SARNET - Severe Accident Research NETwork of Excellence.
A network of excellence federating European research on severe accidents in nuclear power plants.
Despite the accident prevention and management measures adopted in nuclear power plants, a very low probability remains that some accident scenarios may develop into a severe accident with core melting, plant damage and subsequent dispersal of radioactive materials into the environment. The severe accidents at Fukushima-Daiichi (Japan) in March 2011 have strongly underlined the necessity of ongoing efforts to prevent such accidents and limit their consequences.
The SARNET network has been set up under the aegis of the Framework Programmes (FP) of the European Commission on research to perform R&D on severe accidents in water-cooled nuclear power plants. Two projects have been performed, both coordinated by IRSN (France), in the FP6 (2004-08) and FP7 (2009-13).
Since mid-2013, SARNET continues as a network fully integrated in the Technical Area N°2 (TA2), named “Severe accidents” and still coordinated by IRSN, of the NUGENIA association (see www.nugenia.org). NUGENIA is an international non-profit Association of Belgian law officially launched in Brussels in March 2012 and devoted to R&D on fission technology of Generation II and III. It gathers the main actors in Europe as well as a few non-European organizations (Canada, Korea…).
The TA2 scope has been extended to the issues of emergency management and to severe accident impact on environment.