TALISMAN - A European Commission FP7 project promoting transnational access to large infrastructures for a safe management of actinides
Paper in proceedings, 2014
TALISMAN is a large international project funded within the European Commission FP7 EURATOM framework. The aim of TALISMAN is to offer transnational access to large infrastructures for a safe management of actinides. Although clearly focusing on R&D activities from European Union member states, TALISMAN is also open to participation from non-EU countries. TALISMAN is coordinated by CEA (contact by firstname.lastname@example.org), supported by a Governing Board and the ExCom. Dedicated studies on Pu containing materials are integral part of TALISMAN. Safety issues are of fundamental importance for the acceptance and sustainable application of nuclear energy. Actinides play a central role in the nuclear fuel cycle from mining, fuel fabrication, energy production, up to reprocessing, partitioning and transmutation treatment of used fuel, and finally the management and disposal of radioactive waste. Fundamental understanding of actinide properties and behavior in fuel materials during the separation processes and in geological repositories is an imperative prerequisite to tackle the related safety issues. Unravelling the complexity of the actinide components of used nuclear fuel certainly represents one of the great challenges in nuclear science. To meet the needs of safe and sustainable management of nuclear energy it is essential to maintain a high level of expertise in actinide sciences both on a European and international level. Educating and training the next generation of scientists and engineers who will contribute to developing safe actinide management strategies is a key mission. Because actinides are radioactive elements and handling requires specific safety measures, their study requires advanced tools and facilities that are only available to a limited extent. Only a few academic and research organisations have the capabilities and licenses to work on actinide elements. From a European perspective it is therefore strategic to coordinate the existing actinide infrastructures in Europe and strengthen the community of scientists working on actinides. Within TALISMAN we offer (for positively evaluated scientific research proposals submitted in reply to a specific TALISMAN call) access to the previous ACTINET Pooled Facilities (CEA Atalante and CEA DPC, France; ITU Laboratories & hot-cells, European Commission; KIT-INE laboratories and KIT-INE beamline, Germany; HZDR-IRE & ROBL, Germany; PSI microXAS Beamline, Switzerland) to which two new facilities have been added: NNL Central Lab in the UK and CHALMERS in Sweden. TALISMAN is also open to scientists and research organizations from outside the European Union. TALISMAN leads and coordinates a network of actinide facilities across Europe, but also manages a network between facilities and users to increase the knowledge for a safer management of actinides. TALISMAN also enhances the efforts made to support education and training issues by continuing the former ACTINET Summer School series and travel grant attributions for attending international conferences like the Plutonium Futures series. The TALISMAN project website is regularly updated and offers detailed information on all TALISMAN activities at http://www.talisman-project.eu. This is including contact addresses, TALISMAN newsletters, announcements and description of open and forthcoming calls for transnational user access and indicates several other options to perform actinide research within the TALISMAN context.