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PREPARE: Innovative integrated tools and platforms for radiological emergency preparedness and post-accident response in Europe

Research project under the European Commission’s 7th Framework Programme, EURATOM for Nuclear Research and Training Activities (work programme 2012), Fission-2012-3.3.1, Grand Agreement Number 323287

Nature and scope of the project

This project aims to close gaps that have been identified in nuclear and radiological preparedness following the first evaluation of the Fukushima disaster. Among others, the project will address the review of existing operational procedures for dealing with long lasting releases, cross border problems in monitoring and food safety and further develop missing functionalities in decision support systems ranging from improved source term estimation and dispersion modelling to the inclusion of hydrological pathways for European water bodies. In addition, as the management of the Fukushima event in Europe was far from optimal, a so called Analytical Platform will be developed exploring the scientific and operational means to improve information collection, information exchange and the evaluation of such types of disasters. This will be achieved through a collaboration of industry, research and governmental organisations in Europe taking into account the networking activities carried out under the NERIS-TP project. Furthermore, the NERIS Platform member organisations (so far 45 partners) will be actively involved in the development of the new tools.

Activities

This project intends to carry out activities to meet the research challenges defined above. This comprises the evaluation of operational procedures, food safety criteria, atmospheric dispersion and deposition, aquatic modelling, source term estimation, communication with the public and information collection and the scientific evaluation of an on-going nuclear or radiological disaster. The tools developed within the project will be partly integrated into the two decision support systems ARGOS and RODOS. Further methods and tools will be made available for scientific or operational institutions to complement decision support systems. The Analytic Platform may have the potential to become a European centre for collecting and evaluating information and therefore has to be self-sustaining. It is important to note, that improvements can only be made by fostering the interaction between science and operational centres and also by improving communication to the public. This can be achieved in following-up the successful activities started in the European project NERIS-TP and with the NERIS Platform (NERIS – European Platform on Preparedness for Nuclear and Radiological Emergency Response and Recovery), which comprise the key players in Europe. As the engagement with potential end users is also a key for success, the NERIS Platform members and the members of the ARGOS and RODOS user groups will be integrated in this project as associated partners. The chair of the NERIS platform will become a member of the proposed Management Committee. With the ARGOS and RODOS users groups running under the umbrella of the proposed platform, all European Member States, Associated States and even countries outside Europe are part of the dissemination and communication network of the project.