National Radiation Protection Institute as the youngest member of ETSON
The National Radiation Protection Institute - SÚRO v.v.i. - became the youngest member of ETSON from January 1, 2021. It replaced the Research Centre Řež (CV Rez), which had been the TSO in the Czech Republic since 2011. The key reason for this change was the fact that CV Rez belongs together with ÚJV Řež to the CEZ Group, and for this reason it was not formally an independent institution as required by international practice for TSO organizations.
The National Radiation Protection Institute - SÚRO v.v.i. - is a research institute established by the State Office for Nuclear Safety (SUJB) in 1995 and its scope was exclusively oriented towards radiation protection. Only since 2017, with the intensive assistance of CV Rez, the institute started to build its expertise in the field of nuclear safety as well. This process of transfer of "know-how" in analytical nuclear safety assessment was formally completed in 2020, when a group of analytical staff was transferred from CV Rez to SÚRO.
At present, there is a Nuclear Safety Section within SURO consisting of two departments and one independent division – see the simplified organizational chart:
- Nuclear Safety Research and Evaluation Department,
- Department of Support to the State Supervision of Nuclear Safety,
- Division of Support to the SÚJB in the field of Radioactive Waste.
Nuclear Safety Research and Evaluation Department:
- carries out research activities in the field of nuclear safety and develops the knowledge base in various areas of nuclear safety in accordance with the state of the art and technology,
- ensures the operational availability and up-to-date availability of computer codes and computational models of nuclear facilities for the purpose of nuclear safety analysis,
- provides analytical and computational support to the SÚJB in the field of nuclear reactor core neutronics, system thermohydraulics, thermomechanical behaviour and subchannel analysis of nuclear fuel, including severe accident analysis for the purposes of independent nuclear safety assessment,
- at the request of the SÚJB, assesses safety documentation and prepares expert opinions in the framework of the SÚJB licensing procedures.
Department of Support to the State Supervision of Nuclear Safety
- provides support to the state supervision in ensuring nuclear and technical safety in the field of management systems, siting, design, construction and operation of nuclear installations, quality assurance, conformity assessment and verification of selected facilities, periodic, continuous and special safety assessments,
- ensures the performance of the activities of the invited person in the inspection activities of the SÚJB,
- provides expert support to the SÚJB in negotiations with licence holders,
- contributes to the development of legislation and safety instructions in its field.
Division of Support to the SÚJB in the field of Radioactive Waste:
- carries out research activities in the field of radioactive waste management and develops knowledge base in this field in accordance with the state of the art,
- provides support to the SÚJB in the siting, design, construction, operations and closure of radioactive waste disposal facilities,
- assesses safety documentation and prepares expert opinions at the request of the SUJB in the framework of the SÚJB licensing procedures.
All three Departments, as requested by the SÚJB, cooperate in the development of legislation and safety instructions in their area of competence and participate, in agreement with the SÚJB, in the activities of international organisations, in particular the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) OECD/NEA , WENRA, ENSREG, SITEX.Network and ETSON.
An example of active international cooperation is SÚRO's membership of the GRS and IRSN consortium within the ongoing project Framework Contract 939770 "NL-Petten: Topical studies on nuclear power plants operating experience".