¡@J-PARC News - September 2013 (Issue #101)
œSubmission of Report on Improvement Measures for the J-PARC Accident to Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology on September 26
      In response to the radioactive material leak accident at J-PARC's Hadron Experimental Facility on May 23, the High Energy Accelerator Research Organization (KEK) and the Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) were instructed on May 28 by the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, Hakubun Shimomura, to establish an External Expert Panel made up of third parties and reconfirm the safety management system and emergency response procedure while listening to comments. The causes of the accident were investigated by the External Expert Panel at a total of six meetings in the two months after June. Based on the developed improvement measures and other steps to prevent accident recurrence, KEK and JAEA submitted a report on measures to be taken to the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology on September 26.


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œSafety Lecture "Fostering a Safety Culture to Prevent Accidents" by an Invited External Expert
      On August 29, the J-PARC Center invited as a speaker Professor Kenichi Takano of Keio University-an expert highly knowledgeable in the fields of safety and human factors-and held a safety lecture. Professor Takano is a member of the External Expert Panel on the Accident at the J-PARC Hadron Experimental Facility (the Panel). He made great effort to investigate the causes of the accident and compile a report on measures to prevent recurrence. The title of the lecture was "Fostering a Safety Culture to Prevent Accidents" and Professor Takano spoke passionately to the members of the J-PARC Center who packed the large lecture hall of the Nuclear Science Research Institute (NSRI). Following Prof. Takanofs lecture, Dr. Yoshimi Kasugai, who is a sub-leader of the Neutron Source Section of the Materials and Life Science Division of the J-PARC Center and an important member of the investigation team of the Panel, gave a talk entitled "Issues in the safety management system at the J-PARC Center, which may have caused the accident and a future safety management system, which would enforce the safety".

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œTraining for a Radiation Accident Conducted at the Materials and Life Science Experimental Facility (MLF)
      On September 13, training for dealing with an accident was conducted, assuming an accident involving leakage of mercury, which is the target for neutron beam production at the MLF. Due to the recent accident at the Hadron Experimental Facility, a wide-ranging review has been conducted of accident response, and has suggested a revised management system includes the introduction of gAlert Statush. This was the first training based on that review. The training was initiated by the occurrence of a mercury leak alarm at 13:30. It then proceeded according to a series of accident scenarios and finished at about 16:00. Reviews on all responses during the training will be reflected in development of a better emergency procedures manual. Similar training is planned to be held at the Neutrino Experimental Facility this year.

      An emergency evacuation drill in case of earthquake and tsunami was held with JAEA on September 5, and it was confirmed that we could complete the ghead countingh of all staffs and users within 30 minutes after the alarm.

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œWorking Group for Evaluating Partitioning and Transmutation Technologies, Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT)
      This working group was established by MEXT. Up to now, the members met three times, on August 7, on September 9, and on September 13. At these meetings, there was lively discussion of a variety of topics including: the R&D situation regarding ADS (Accelerator Driver Systems) for conducting research on partitioning (for separating and classifying radioactive materials based on differences in their half-lives) and transmutation technologies; the situation regarding review of TEF (Transmutation Experimental Facility); development of human resources such as the researchers engaged in this research; and the significance and necessity of international cooperation with projects such as the MYRRHA Project, which aims to demonstrate an ADS in Belgium, Europe.


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œReports by J-PARC staff at Research Meetings on Neutron Utilization
      For fiscal 2013, the Industrial Users Society for Neutron Application has planned more than twenty research meetings on 10 themes using neutrons in which there is strong corporate interest. Two meetings were held in Tokyo in September. At the research meeting on soft matter neutron scattering held on September 6, Dr. Kentaro Suzuya of the J-PARC Center (Principal Researcher, JAEA) reported on research concerning the physical properties of amorphous materials such as glass. At the research meeting on September 17 on residual strain and stress analysis, Dr. Stefanus Harjo (Assistant Principal Researcher, JAEA) reported on factors involved in the degradation of characteristics of superconducting cable for the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER). Harjo's report was based on recent experimental results at BL19 "TAKUMI" of the MLF.

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