World Association of Nuclear Operators
Moscow Regional Centre

Round Table on Nuclear Infrastructure at ATOMEXPO-2022

Round Table on Nuclear Infrastructure at ATOMEXPO-2022
WANO Moscow Centre Director Vasily Aksenov took part in the Round Table session on the topic ‘Harmonization of the Licensing Process: Utopia or Reality’ held on 22 November 2022 in the frames of the XII-th International Forum ATOMEXPO 2022 in Sochi.

The Round Table speakers – managers of nuclear and radiation safety regulators from Russia, Bangladesh, Belarus, Hungary, Egypt, Turkey, Uzbekistan, discussed key issues of national safety regulation system development in atomic energy utilization, and the licensing process as an integral element of nuclear structure development as a whole and implementation of the nuclear project.
Among others, they discussed the licensing process aspects that motivate the international community to develop new initiatives in the licensing process harmonization area, and requirements both from the operator and regulator points of view. The speakers stressed the importance of establishing the requirements management system with due account of international recommendations to simplify the licensing process.

In his turn, WANO Moscow Centre Director V.Aksenov emphasized the problem issues faced by the new and mature operating organizations: “NPP designs shall consider international operating experience and best practices, approaches of WANO as an aggregator of the world practical experience in safe nuclear plant operation. Our experience shows the need and expediency of implementing nuclear plant construction and commissioning projects based on the codes and rules acting at the time of issuing the construction and commissioning licenses, regardless of subsequent changes in national legislation requirements. All subsequent changes aimed at bringing the rules to conformity with new requirements should be made after the unit is transferred to commercial operation. Otherwise, a significant uncertainty arises with project time-frames and financing from investors, customer and contractor”.

At the conclusion of the Round Table, the participants expressed the opinion that the event provided an efficient platform for experience exchange in establishing and development of safety regulation infrastructure in nuclear energy utilization area, preparation of licensing documents and licensing projects of new high and low capacity nuclear power plants.

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Author: Chichikin Dmitry