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Institute of Energy and Climate Research

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Research at IEK-6 contributes to the Helmholtz program „Nuclear Waste Management, Safety and Radiation Research“ (NUSAFE) and focuses on topics related to the safe management of nuclear waste and international safeguards as well as reactor safety.

Nuclear Waste Management - The safe management of radioactive waste and its final disposal in a deep geological repository is one of the grand challenges of our times and an integral part of the German “Energiewende”. The related research is multidisciplinary – while IEK-6 research mainly considers nuclear aspects, it addresses the behavior of radionuclides and the relevant waste form materials by combining radio-, geo- and materials chemistry aspects and by integrating experiment and simulation. Research covers the complete chain from waste generation to waste disposal, including research in support of the long-term safety for deep geological disposal, research on unresolved issues prior to waste disposal e.g. pre-disposal, and research on international safeguards. IEK-6 operates radiochemistry laboratories and is strongly linked to the Ernst Ruska-Centre, ER-C, to the Helmholtz Nanofacility with atom probe tomography, to the Jülich Supercomputer Centre, SC, and the Central Institute for Engineering, Electronics and Analytics, ZEA.

Reactor Safety - Reactor safety research performed at Forschungszentrum Jülich advances the state of scientific and technical knowledge on accident-related phenomena and processes for design-basis and beyond design-basis accidents. Strong interconnections of experiments up to technical scale and model development are the driver for the institute’s expertise which is internationally requested through projects with scientific and industrial partners. Alongside the development of coupled modeling approaches for fuel element behavior simulation, unique experimental facilities in the fields of hydrogen recombination, aerosol behavior and wall condensation enable valuable insights in relevant containment phenomena and support the development of integrated modeling strategies for the application of refined CFD codes for advanced analyses on the hydrogen issue and the radiological source term.

Being well linked in the scientific community, research at IEK-6 creates impact by contributing to international projects with scientific and key industrial partners,e.g. waste management organizations and technical support organizations, as well as neighboring universities.