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The Nuclear Power and Energy Agency (NuPEA) is coordinating the implementation of the Kenya Nuclear Research Reactor (KNRR) project, guided by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Milestone Approach. The Milestone Approach represents a sequential three-phase development of 19 infrastructure issues. The completion of work at each phase marks a milestone and forms the basis of evaluation and decision-making on progression to the next phase.
Research reactors are nuclear facilities that serve primarily as a neutron source for various applications in education and training, research, health, agriculture, and industry. Research reactors offer a diverse range of applications, such as education and training in all nuclear technology areas, neutron beam research for material studies and non-destructive examination, neutron activation analysis to measure minute quantities of an element, radioisotope production for medical and industrial use, neutron irradiation for materials testing for fission and fusion reactors, neutron transmutation doping of silicon, among others. Therefore, the implementation of the KNRR project will play a key role in the realization of Kenya’s development agenda.
To comprehensively evaluate the progress and status of a research reactor project, an Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Review for Research Reactors (INIR-RR) mission is recommended. An INIR-RR mission is a holistic IAEA coordinated peer review mission, conducted by a team of international experts specialized in research reactor infrastructure areas. It is designed to assist countries in determining the status of its national nuclear infrastructure and to identify further development needs to support a research reactor project in line with international standards and best practices. In this regard, the country will host an INIR-RR mission at the Boma Hotel in Nairobi from 11 th to 19 th December 2023. The output of the INIR RR mission is the production of a report capturing identified good practices, recommendations, and suggestions on the development of the KNRR project infrastructure issues in the country. NuPEA, in collaboration with stakeholder institutions, will thereafter develop an Integrated Action plan (IAP) to address recommendations and suggestions in the mission report.
This event underscores Kenya’s unwavering commitment to transparency and cooperation in advancing nuclear technology for peaceful purposes. The insights gained from this review will propel the country toward achieving Kenya’s goals of harnessing the potential of nuclear energy safely and responsibly. NuPEA extends a warm welcome to participants, experts, and stakeholders involved in the KNRR project. Together, we aim to foster a constructive dialogue that will shape the future of nuclear research, innovation, and development in Kenya.