•  Lessons learned for overcoming conversion challenges, increasing the effectiveness of research reactor use, and enabling new reactor missions;

•  Future research reactor conversion plans, challenges, and opportunities; and

•  Actions that could be taken by U.S. and Russian organizations to promote conversion.

The statement of task for the project is included as Appendix C.

The preparation of the symposium agenda and the production of this summary report were carried out by a committee of U.S. experts appointed by the National Academies and a committee of Russian experts appointed by the Russian Academy of Sciences. Biographical sketches of the committee members are provided in Appendix B. These organizing committees met jointly three times over the course of the project: First, in November 2010 to plan the symposium; second, in June 2011 to hold the symposium; and third, in September 2011 to finalize the symposium report. The agenda for the symposium is provided in Appendix A, along with a list of briefings presented at the November 2010 meeting.

NNSA and the NRC agreed that the symposium would not produce consensus findings or conclusions but would instead be used to encourage discussion among U.S. and Russian participants. For this reason, this symposium summary does not contain findings, conclusions, or recommendations and does not represent a consensus of symposium participants.5 This report represents a summary record of the briefings and discussions that occurred during the symposium. Although the U.S. and Russian organizing committees are responsible for the content of this report, any views contained in the report are not necessarily those of these committees, the National Academies, or the Russian Academy of Sciences.

The remainder of the chapter provides background information on proliferation risks associated with civilian use of HEU; basic operating principles and terminology associated with research reactors; and potential impacts of reducing HEU use in research reactors. Much of the content of this discussion is drawn from symposium briefings (Adelfang, 2011; Arkhangelsky, 2011; D’Agostino, 2011; Dragunov, 2011; Matos, 2011; Roglans, 2011a). Additionally, some basic concepts and definitions were added for the benefit of non-expert readers.


5 Important statements of opinion are attributed to individual workshop participants where appropriate, but no attempt has been made to attribute statements of fact.

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