Jules Horowitz Materials Testing Reactor (JHR)

It is named after the physicist Jules Horowitz, one of the great pioneers of nuclear research in France.

This research reactor is under construction at the Commissariat à l'énergie atomique et aux énergies alternatives (CEA) en Cadarache (France).

The JHR reactor will offer experimental irradiation capabilities to study structural materials and fuel behaviour under irradiation by generating a high neutron flux, which will allow, among other things

  • Support advanced modelling of phenomena to predict behaviour beyond that demonstrated by experimental means.
  • Operate experimental devices in controlled conditions (pressure, temperature, flux, etc.) representative of pressurized water reactors.

It will also help to cover between 25% and 50% of Europe's annually increasing demand for artificial radioisotopes, especially for nuclear medicine.

When commissioned, it will be a high-performance materials test reactor designed to generate up to 100 MWt and will have the capacity to perform 20 materials and fuel experiments at the same time, as well as to produce radioisotopes, mainly for the medical industry.

This experimental irradiation tool, unique in Europe, will not only be available to the nuclear industry and the medical industry but will also be available to the medical industry.

Photo: CEA

The JHR will be operated as an international facility for users associated with the project and will be open to international collaboration. Therefore, the JHR is welcoming scientists and engineers from various organisations and institutions.

These seconded individuals become part of the team for a defined period (typically 1 year) and are asked to work in various fields, e.g. physics to help develop experimental devices (neutron physics, thermohydraulics, etc.) and/or to support the future operator in areas such as nuclear safety analysis or smart instrumentation and control systems. This is an opportunity for countries willing to invest in nuclear technology to create know-how.

The JHR seconded personnel programme provides nuclear field experience and offers the possibility of practical work in real nuclear facilities. This type of training can bridge the gap between academic education and product-specific technical training for all types of existing practices in such reactors. This is fully in line with the recent IAEA initiative, which aims to certify 'International Centres Based on Research Reactors' (ICERRs) to rationalise the use of research reactors worldwide and harmonise their respective operations and nuclear safety activities.

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