The HERACLES-CP kick-off meeting in Brussels has been a huge success.
Together with more than 60 guests in the audience,
representatives from Germany, France, Belgium, the US and from the EU
discussed the possibilities and perspectives of the worldwide efforts to
minimize the use of highly enriched Uranium in civil research reactors and
neutron sources together with the HERACLES partners at the CP kick-off meeting
in the Bavarian Representation to the European Union.
After the welcome by Michael Hinterdobler, Director of the Representation of the Free State of Bavaria, Winfried Petry, Scientific Director of FRM II (Technische Universität München, Germany) introduced the audience to the HERACLES CP project. He showed how the project seamlessly integrates into the world-wide non-proliferation efforts and stressed the importance of international collaboration. Roberto Passalacqua, the CP Project Officer from EC/DG Research & Innovation, informed about the funding opportunities within HORIZON 2020 and how CP integrates into this context.
Eric van Walle, General Director of SCK-CEN (Belgium), moderated the evening and passed on the word to Marc Delpech (CEA, France) and the discussion panel. His guests were Alberto Fernandez Fernandez (Head of Unit Nuclear Applications / Directorate-General Energy, FPS Economy, SMEs, Self-Employed and Energy, Belgium), Guillaume Gillet (Advisor for Nuclear affairs, French Permanent Representation to the EU, France), Thomas Roth (Head of Referat 713, Federal Ministry of Education and Research BMBF, Germany) and Ute Blohm-Hieber (Head of Unit Nuclear Fuel Market Operations, EC/DG Energy - Euratom Supply Agency ESA, European Commission). The panel discussed the importance of high performance neutron sources and research reactors for Europe and laid out strategies for the conversion to lower enrichment.
This view was shared by the American guest, Jeffrey Chamberlin, Director of the U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Office of Material Management and Minimization's (M3) Office of Conversion, who welcomed the intensified cross-atlantic collaboration. The talks were concluded by William Stirling, Director of ILL, who gave an impressive overview on what today's high performance research reactors are able to achieve with their neutrons. He made clear that HPRRs play a key role in answering the grand challenges of modern societies and their performance must therefore be preserved.
The evening finished with a reception and lively discussion between audience and our guests from the podium. As befits for the location, typical Bavarian food and beer were served, which greatly perfected the successful evening.