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India must build a nuclear database: Experts
Lalitha Vaidyanathan in Manipal | November 13, 2006 16:51 IST
India has the capability to be a world class leader in the field of nuclear data in the next ten years and should set up a National Data Base Centre, experts have said.
"India has the expertise and capabilities to become a world leader in the field of nuclear data within a decade and lot of young scientists should come forward to make it a reality, experts have said.
A nuclear data base can assist users in the determination of the characteristics and performance of nuclear reactors, and permit improved nuclear power plant operation through the reduction and elimination of certain types of uncertainties.
Dr Alan Nichols, Head, Nuclear Data Section, International Atomic Energy Agency said India should take pride in the manner its energy needs are being addressed with 16 pressurised heavy water reactors operating, constructing fast breeder reactor and working on advanced heavy water reactor.
"It is important that India stands up and registers its nuclear data needs for industrial development and sound commercial goals," he said.
"The workshop provided an excellent opportunity to define its nuclear data needs, show the way forward to our understanding and ability to predict the nuclear-based behaviour of these relatively novel thorium-Uranium reactor systems," Nichols told PTI.
"It is time for India also to start its own centre for its nuclear programme needs in the 21st century," Takahashi said. Other countries, which have nuclear data centres, include USA, Italy, France, Japan, South Korea, Russia and Germany.
Meanwhile, Nichols pointed out that the centres in China and Russia needed to do more that what they are doing now in comparison with the number of operating nuclear plants.
"The inputs from China, Russia and Europe are disappointing," Nichols said.
Dead of Spectrometry Facility CSNSM, France, George Audi stressed that India can consider taking up evaluation of fundamental quantities such as nuclear masses and join the international efforts.
He said, currently in the international efforts, 80 per cent of the evaluation is done by US scientists and non-US contribution is only 20 per cent. "I recommend that India can lead in the area of evaluation of nuclear data in South Asian region," Audi added.
Nichols said that IAEA has been involved in the formulations and maintenance of a wide range of atomic and nuclear databases for over 40 years. Most of these were brought together to work in unison through well defined IAEA coordinated research projects and more modest data Development Programmes, he said.
The IAEA expert said that the primary aim is to improve such data services to all users in the subcontinent.
Late last year, BARC had set up mirror site server for IAEA nuclear data base to to enable Indian nuclear engineers and physicists to access recommended good quality nuclear data rapidly and timely manner, he said.
Dr G Kim, Head, Accelerator Facility of Republic of Korea said the existing informed collaboration between India and Korea on 'Neutron time and flight experiments' will continue and invited Indian students to make use of his facility.