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1st semester 2016 scientific news

EventIRSN takes part in RICOMET 2016
The second International Conference on Risk Perception, Communication and Ethics of Exposures to Ionising Radiation (RICOMET 2016) is being held from the 1st to 3rd of June 2016 in Bucharest, Romania. This second edition aims to discuss the opportunity to develop a transdisciplinary approach of radiation protection research, combined to social sciences and humanities. The focal points of this year's conference are:
  • the proposal of a Strategic Research Agenda (SRA) on social sciences and humanities in radiation protection ;
  • the policy making related to different applications of ionizing radiation.
RICOMET 2016 is organised under the auspices of 4 Euratom projects, EAGLE1, OPERRA2, CONCERT3 and PLATENSO4. IRSN takes part in this major event by its strong involvement in three of these projects (EAGLE, OPERRA and CONCERT) and by its intervention in several sessions.
The conference continues the dialogue started by RICOMET 2015 on social and ethical issues. It permits to bring together the stakeholders - technical platforms representatives such as NERIS, EURADOS, ER-ALLIANCE and MELODI, policy decision makers, experts or representatives of informed civil society – so as to think about an improved radiological risk governance.
1. Enhancing Education, Training And Communication Processes For Informed Behaviors And Decision-Making Related To Ionizing Radiation Risks
2. Open Project for the European Radiation Research Area
3. European Joint Programme for the Integration of Radiation Protection Research
4. Platform for Enhanced Societal Research related to nuclear energy in Central and Eastern Europe

AwardA Best Poster Award for an LNR PhD student

Photo_Vaibhav_JAISWAL.jpgVaibhav Jaiswal, a first-year PhD student at the IRSN's "Laboratoire de recherche et d'expertise en neutronique des réacteurs" (Reactor Physics Research and Safety Assessment Laboratory - SNC-LNR), received the Best Poster Award at the last ISIS neutron training course held from April 12 to 21, 2016.


Vaibhav Jaiswal's thesis deals with data on nuclear thermalization 1 of neutrons in water, in temperature and pressure conditions representative of pressurized water reactors (PWR).


The ISIS neutron training course is held once a year by the British Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (RAL) of the STFC (Science and Technology Facilities Council). It is aimed at PhD students and post-doctoral fellows with little to no experience in neutron scattering but whose future work will involve using instrumentation tools from the ISIS research center (source of neutrons and muons). The ISIS research center is located at the RAL. An average of 30 participants attended the ISIS neutron training course.


1. Neutron thermalization involves slowing neutrons in a thermal spectrum nuclear reactor (PWR type) to allow a nuclear chain reaction with fuel with low fissile matter.

Read the poster
Find out more about Vaibhav Jaiswal's thesis
Find out more about the Reactor Physics Research and SafetyAssessment Laboratory


A special issue of Aktis, IRSN’s scientific newsletter, 5 years after Fukushima


The eleventh English-language issue of Aktis, the quarterly newsletter on IRSN’s research, is focused on research on nuclear reactor accidents, 5 years after Fukushima accident.


It is available on a HTML and PDF package. Aktis is published only in a digital version and available in HTML or text format for e-mail, RSS and a pageflip PDF. 


This issue begins with a panorama of the research on nuclear reactor accidents, and then focuses on several programmes, which are about effectiveness and control of water injections in a core during meltdown, better prevention of hydrogen explosion risks, the modelling of forest or fish contamination, or the analyse of the accident from the organisational and human factor angle.


The subscription for the English and French versions is complimentary. To read this issue or subscribe, go to
Read the pageflip PDF


AgendaRegistrations open for the final JASMIN workshop
On May 19, 2016, the IRSN, as project coordinator, is organizing the final workshop for the European JASMINLogo_Jasmin.jpg project (Joint Advanced Severe accidents Modeling and Integration for Na-cooled fast neutron reactors). The workshop is open not only to project partners, but to anyone working in the nuclear field (including research bodies, universities, manufacturers and safety bodies, etc.). The meeting will provide an opportunity to discuss the results from the project and also the prospects for research into the safety of sodium-cooled fast neutron reactors. Those interested can register now by downloading the form on the right.
The JASMIN project was launched in 2011 as part of the European Commission's 7th Framework Program (FP) in nuclear fission safety. Its objective is to extend the use of the ASTEC package to sodium-cooled fast neutron reactors (SFRs). ASTEC was designed initially to simulate numerically  core-meltdown accidents in water-cooled nuclear reactors. JASMIN subscribes to the general objective of enhancing the resistance of 4th-generation SFRs to severe accidents, a major objective of the Strategic Research Agenda set by the SNETP (Sustainable Nuclear Energy Technology Platform).
Closing date for workshop registration: May 2, 2016.

Find out more about the JASMIN project
Workshop program and practical details
To register for workshop, please send the registration form to Nathalie Girault

Experimental facilities
The MIRCOM facility has been unveiled
On January 28th, the MIRCOM facility was unveiled at Cadarache, after eighteen months of work. The event brought together the IRSN and the Centre d’Études Nucléaires de Bordeaux Gradignan (CENBG), scientific partners of the project, local political and administrative leaders, as well as the main companies that worked on the project. In total, nearly 100 people attended the event.

Mircom2 (2).jpgThis facility is part of radiobiology research efforts seeking to understand the mechanisms induced by ionizing radiation at the cellular and subcellular level. MIRCOM will particularly contribute to a major radiobiology research project at IRSN on understanding the complications of radiation therapy, ROSIRIS. One of this project’s objectives is to establish a link between the energy deposits at the nanoscale and early biological effects. These studies will also be useful for understanding the effects of low doses of ionizing radiation.

In practice, the MIRCOM microbeam is one of ten facilities in the world capable of targeting, with micrometric precision, cellular or subcellular elements with a defined number of ions, and monitoring the early biological effects of this radiation using video microscopy. The facility will be used to explore radiation-induced malfunctions not only at the DNA level but also in intra- and intercellular communication. The MIRCOM line is supported by the AMANDE facility and uses its 2 MV Tandetron™ accelerator, which produces light-hydrogen and deuterium ion beams in the 100 keV to 4 MeV range. The possibilities for MIRCOM are expanded with the addition of two new ion sources, a helium source and a light-ion source producing boron, carbon, nitrogen and oxygen.
In the coming months, the MIRCOM facility will be characterized and the first experimental protocols put in place in order to facilitate the first irradiation campaigns beginning in early 2017.

Photo: Jacques Repussard, IRSN's Director General © IRSN

PublicationsThe 10th issue of Aktis, IRSN’s scientific newsletter, is available 


Aktis-10-EN.jpgThe tenth English-language issue of Aktis, the quarterly newsletter on IRSN’s research, is available on a HTML and PDF package. Aktis is published only in a digital version and available in HTML or text format for e-mail, RSS and a pageflip PDF. 



In this issue, focus on improving the ability to assess seismic hazard and the effects on installations. Aktis n° 10 also tackles the evaluation of how much exposure to natural radioactivity comes from food and an advanced measurment technique for validating ISIS, fire simulation software. As well, it deals with the modelization of the physics-chemistry of sodium aerosols during an SFR core accident.


The subscription for the English and French versions is complimentary. To read this issue or subscribe, go to


Read the pageflip PDF

Research programs
The RENEB network is operational
Started in January 2012 under the 7th call for projects PC-Fission-2011, the RENEB project (Realizing European Network in Biodosimetry) aimed to create and introduce a European network in biological and physical dosimetry that could be rapidly mobilized for dose evaluations in radiological emergencies. The final meeting for the project took place from 2 to 4 December 2015 in Lisbon (Portugal).

The past four years have witnessed the birth of the RENEB network, which is now operational and brings together 19 European reference laboratories (including LDB and LDRI of IRSN) qualified to be activated in a crisis situation. In parallel, connections to other existing networks (Asia, South America, South Africa) have also been set up during the course of the project. The network is also open to other partner laboratories which would like to join it (after intercomparison, training, etc.).

In order to standardize the practices of the various member laboratories, IRSN has drawn up a quality manual covering the different biological and physical dosimetry techniques that can be used in the event of a major radiological emergency. This manual states the rules for organization and traceability to be observed, and also the standard protocols, so as to standardize the working methods of the various European laboratories that have joined the network.

RENEB must continue its training, especially by regular intercomparisons. The network plans to participate in research requiring the analysis of a large number of samples (molecular epidemiology).

Find out more about the RENEB project


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