HEAD OF THE NUCLEAR POWER TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT SECTION OF THE INTERNATIONAL ATOMIC ENERGY AGENCY (IAEA)
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) actively supports its Member States in the development of evolutionary and innovative nuclear reactors. With the fundamental support of its Technical Working Groups, the IAEA defines and implements multiannual programs which, in particular, are intended to help Member States in improving their capabilities in the development, design, safety analyses and deployment of nuclear power reactors.
Supporting the verification, validation and qualification of the simulation codes used for the design and safety analyses of innovative reactors is a relevant part of this program. Thanks to the information provided by the Member States, the IAEA is in the position to carry out benchmark exercises based on the experimental data gathered during the past operation of prototypes and demonstrators. Examples of such initiatives are the coordinated research projects on: SCWR Thermal-Hydraulic, HTGR Uncertainty Analysis, BN-600, Monju, Phenix, EBR-II and PFBR reactors, as well as the planned one on FFTF.
The exchange of information is also a major objective. In the frame of its Nuclear Safety Action Plan, in February 2015 the IAEA conducted the “International Experts Meeting on Strengthening Research and Development Effectiveness in the Light of the Accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant”, which was followed by a Technical Meeting on “Post-Fukushima Research and Development Strategies and Priorities”. Furthermore, after the two successful “IAEA Conferences on Fast Reactors and Related Fuel Cycles”, held in 2009 in Kyoto and in 2013 in France, the preparation of the next event, to be held in 2017 in the Russian Federation, has just started. The collection of data also allows the IAEA to publish and update status reports and technical documents, as well as to develop databases with the most up-to-date information on advanced reactor technologies. The major service offered by the IAEA in this area is the “Advanced Reactors Information System (ARIS)”, a web-accessible database that provides Member States with comprehensive and balanced information about all advanced reactor designs and concepts.
The IAEA is also committed to promote the international harmonization of many aspects of the fast reactors technology. A major example is the development – together with the Generation IV International Forum - of internationally agreed Safety Design Criteria and Safety Design Guidelines for sodium cooled fast reactors and High Temperature Gas Reactors. The ongoing CRP on “Sodium properties and safe operation of experimental facilities in support of the development and deployment of Sodium-cooled Fast Reactors (SFR) - NAPRO” is aimed at harmonizing several technical aspects of SFR research. With complementary objectives, the IAEA is developing a catalogue of existing and planned experimental facilities in support of liquid-metal cooled fast neutron systems.
Finally, the IAEA is very much committed on the education and training of the next generation nuclear engineers and researchers, and regularly organizes training courses using its large suit of PC-based NPP simulators for education.
Dr. Stefano Monti is currently the Head of the Nuclear Power Technology Development Section of the International Atomic Energy Agencyin Vienna. From May 2011 to January 2015 he covered the position of IAEA Team Leader for Fast Reactor Technology Development.
For more than 30 years he has been working on several national and international projects and programmes on advanced nuclear systems, leading a number of international research groups. As Director of Research at ENEA (Italian National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development), he was Head of the Division Reactor and Fuel Cycle Safety and Security Methods, President of the SIET company carrying out safety tests for the licensing of advanced GEN-III and SMR systems, and scientific coordinator of the Italian R&D programme on nuclear fission. He has served in a number of national and international nuclear committees, among which the Board of Directors of the Italian National Institute for Nuclear Physics, the Steering Committee of the OECD Nuclear Energy Agency, the Executive Committee of the European Sustainable Nuclear Energy Technology Platform.
He has published more than 200 papers in refereed international journals and conference proceedings. Dr. Monti holds a Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering from the University of Bologna (Italy).