VTT supports safe and efficient use of nuclear fission power including nuclear waste management by developing, validating and applying experimental and theoretical methods and tools. The reactor safety topics cover fuel and reactor physics, thermal hydraulics, severe accidents, structural analysis and construction safety, probabilistic risk analysis, automation and control room design, as well as organisational and human issues. Nuclear waste management research concentrates on performance of technical and natural barriers of spent fuel repositories and on technology of the encapsulation facilities. VTT also significantly contributes to nuclear fusion research in plasma physics, fusion materials and remote handling.
The methods and expertise are applied in the analysis of safety and efficient operation of current and future nuclear power plants in Finland and abroad. Safety authorities are the key customers, but VTT also serves nuclear utilities and vendors in many ways. The waste management research concentrates on methods of the direct disposal of spent fuel to bed rock, which is the concept chosen in Finland and Sweden. Fusion research mainly aims at ITER applications.
New interest in nuclear power as low carbon and stable energy source and the approaching decisions to launch construction of the final disposal facilities for radioactive waste increase demand of expertise supplied by VTT. Emerging reactor technologies require attention to new research topics, mostly in international co-operation.
Some 200 specialists concentrate full or part time on various fields of nuclear energy research presenting many technology sectors studied at VTT. The research facilities comprise large selection of computer codes, experimental facilities in the fields of material and structural studies, severe accidents, fire studies, as well as radiochemistry and specific aspects of final disposal of radioactive waste. The TRIGA research reactor is used for cancer treatment by Boron Neutron Capture Therapy (BNCT) and for isotope production.
Olkiluoto 3 , source: TVO