VVD Member of Parliament Silvio Erkens and CU Member of Parliament Pieter Grinwis, both spokespersons for Climate and Energy for their parties, visited the Energy & Health Campus in Petten on 11 February. This afternoon Erkens and Grinwis discussed the development of new nuclear knowledge infrastructure for energy and health applications with board members and program managers of NRG|PALLAS.
The visit took place in response to an amendment that Silvio Erkens and Laurens Dassen of VOLT had submitted to give the nuclear knowledge infrastructure a boost.
Europe must be climate neutral by 2050. Nuclear energy may become part of the solution. Among other things, the new cabinet has decided to build two new nuclear power stations, and this requires reinforcement of knowledge. There was extensive discussion about the nuclear knowledge infrastructure, about research, and about the need to build a new reactor to replace the HFR. This reactor is needed for research and for the production of medical isotopes. In the first quarter of 2022, the cabinet will make a decision about the replacement of the HFR by the PALLAS-reactor.
Experimental research into applications of nuclear technology has been conducted for decades at the Energy & Health Campus in Petten. NRG conducts research into the safe and reliable production of nuclear energy in existing nuclear power plants and new innovative concepts such as the thorium reactor. These new concepts aim to make nuclear energy more sustainable through more efficient use of raw materials and reduction of the amount of radioactive waste.
During the talks, the production of medical isotopes (for 30,000 patients per day) and the development of new therapeutic applications of medical isotopes and the opportunities that lie there were also discussed.
The visit was concluded with a visit to the Hot Cell Laboratory and a tour of the Campus.