IRSN, Institut de radioprotection et de sûreté nucléaire

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Research units

Equipment and structure analysis department (SAMS)

The Equipment and Structure Analysis Department (SAMS) is responsible for conducting specialised analyses required for safety assessments in construction (design, materials, manufacture, inspection and qualification of materials under accident conditions) and operation (operating experience, anomalies and incidents, maintenance, in-service surveillance) of mechanical and electrical equipment, software, civil engineering structures and structures contributing to the safety of the facilities.

This department therefore:

  • analyses the provisions adopted at the design and production stages, during modification or repair, and checks their suitability for the safety objectives and their compliance with good practices,
  • examines the consequences of design anomalies or errors for safety, discrepancies between production and maintenance and feedback from incident and accident operation, to formulate an opinion on the consequences of these discrepancies and measures to be implemented,
  • makes the most of these analyses and those from the departments responsible for the facilities to advise on preventive maintenance and in-service equipment monitoring,
  • supports national and international regulatory bodies charged with defining and drafting rules, codes and standards within its areas of expertise,
  • drafts doctrine guides and all usage documents for IRSN to make it easier for the Institute’s other units to allocate its positions within its areas of expertise,
  • participates in defining and implementing R&D programmes in its areas of expertise,
  • in its areas of expertise, performs support studies in the analysis or carrying out of the Institute’s cross-cutting projects.


To successfully complete its missions, SAMS consults as necessary with designers and operators, other units in the Division and the other IRSN Divisions, within its areas of expertise.



SAMS sections


  • Civil Engineering and Structures Analysis Section (BAGCS)
  • Instrumentation Control and Power Systems Analysis Section (Basec)
  • Mechanical Equipment Analysis Section (BAMM)

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Evaluation des sytèmes programmés ©Olivier Seignette/Mikaël Lafontan/IRSN


By phone : +33 (0)


by e-mail, head of unit, Laurent-Jacques Foucher


Equipment and structure analysis department


BP 17
92262 Fontenay-aux-Roses
Cédex France


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