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SCK•CEN: Studiecentrum voor Kernenergie – Centre d’Etude de l’énergie nucléaire, Belgium

The Belgian Nuclear Research Centre, SCK•CEN, is a Foundation of Public Utility (FPU), with a legal status according to private law, under the tutorial of the Belgian Federal Minister in charge of energy. SCK•CEN has about 600 employees, of which one third has an academic degree.

The statutory mission gives the priority to research on problems of societal concern:

  • Safety of nuclear installations
  • Radiation protection
  • Safe treatment and disposal of radioactive waste
  • Fight against uncontrolled proliferation of fissile materials and nuclear terrorism

The main facilities of SCK•CEN are:

  1. BR2: a 100 MWth material testing reactor
  2. BR1: a 4 MWth graphite gas research reactor
  3. VENUS: a zero power critical facility
  4. BR3: the first PWR reactor built outside the USA, presently serving as a European demonstration programme for reactor dismantling since 1990 after a 25 years of operation
  5. HADES: (an underground research laboratory at -225 m in clay for high level waste disposal
  6. LHMA: laboratory for high and medium activity with various hot cells for irradiated fuel and structural materials
  7. Nuclear chemical laboratories for research on highly radioactive materials including irradiated MA

Since 1998 SCK•CEN is developing in collaboration with IBA s.a. and many other European laboratories and research centres MYRRHA, an Accelerator Driven sub-critical System (ADS). It consists of a proton accelerator proton coupled to a liquid Pb-Bi spallation target in a Pb-Bi cooled and a sub-critical fast core. MYRRHA will serve as a basis for the European experimental ADS. It will provide protons and neutrons for various R&D applications, among others transmutation studies.

SCK•CEN has participated in the European TWG on European Roadmap for ADS transmutation and coordinated the ADOPT Thematic Network. SCK•CEN has participated in the following FP5 P&T projects: PDS-XADS, FUTURE, SPIRE, TECLA, MEGAPIE-Test, ASCHLIM, MUSE, and coordinates today the domain DM1 of the FP6 EUROTRANS Project.

Dr. Ir. Gert Van den Eynde, is the head of the Expert Group Reactor Modeling and Safety. He holds a Master degree in Engineering in Computer Science, a Master degree in nuclear engineering and a PhD in nuclear engineering. He is involved in the MYRRHA project since 1999 and was task leader in the FP6 IP-EUROTRANS for the XT-ADS core design. His main fields of research are computational methods for neutron transport and reactor core modeling and analysis.

Prof. dr. Hamid Aït Abderrahim, is the Director of the Institute of Advanced Nuclear Systems (+/- 100 persons). He is the MYRRHA project leader since 1998. He has a Nuclear Engineering degree and a Reactor Physics Ph.D. He participated in many FP5 projects related to P&T and ADS development such as PDS-XADS, ADOPT, FUTURE, ASCHLIM, MUSE, SPIRE, TECLA, MEGAPIE-Test.

Prof. dr. Peter Baeten, is the Deputy Director of the Institute of Advanced Nuclear Systems. He has a master degree in Applied Physics Engineering and a PhD in Nuclear Engineering. He is involved in the MYRRHA support team since 2000 where his main field of research was with regard to ADS coupling experiments via FP5 MUSE and FP6 IP-EUROTRANS GUINEVERE. From 1999-2008, he was also responsible for the exploitation and experimental programmes of the VENUS (zero power critical facility) and BR1 (4 MWth graphite-gaz-natural uranium reactor) research reactors at the Mol-site.

Website: www.sckcen.be