FACE project meeting

The FACE (Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station Accident Information Collection and Evaluation) project is a constructive and integrative extension of already completed projects (BSAFPreADES and ARC-F) related to the Fukushima Daiichi accident analysis and the preparation of the fuel debris retrieval operations.

The FACE project started in July 2022, and is nearing its halfway point. In this context, the project brought together around 70 international experts on 29-31 January 2024 to discuss the latest developments. The fourth FACE meeting was hosted by Gesellschaft für Anlagen- und Reaktorsicherheit - Global Research for Safety (GRS) in Cologne, Germany.

During the meeting, the Japanese partners introduced the recent findings and investigation plans for Units 1 and 2 of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. Project members from Ukraine presented their activities in monitoring fuel-containing materials at Chernobyl. Meeting participants also shared updates on the activities in the three main FACE tasks and decided during the next FACE meeting to review remaining major nuclear safety gaps identified through Fukushima-Daiichi accident analyses and forensic investigations.

The first Symposium of Round Robin Debris Analysis Activity (RRDAA) held on 31 January 2024 in conjunction with the fourth FACE meeting invited experts from other NEA projects and working groups. During the symposium, participants discussed updates on the corium round robin preliminary findings in the United States, analytical plan and previous tests in Japan, as well as oxidic Molten Core Concrete Interaction (MCCI) samples project in France. The NEA representatives presented the FRAME workshop (Future Research for Accident Management Enhancement in operating and future reactors, informed by Fukushima Daiichi insights), its objectives and programme. The event will be held at Argonne National Laboratory in September 2024. Organised by the NEA and the US organisations in conjunction with the fifth FACE project meeting, the workshop will reunite regulators, industry and plant operators to identify core research capabilities that will be needed to collaboratively address in the short and long term remaining safety issues for operating and future reactors.

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