On June 20, President Toshio Hirano and other representatives from Japan’s National Institute for Quantum and Radiological Science and Technology (QST) met the press to explain the FY19 reorganization of the organization into “QST 2.0,” with research on quantum life science at its core.
The institute was created in April 2016 through the partial merger of its predecessor, the National Institute of Radiological Sciences (NIRS), together with the Quantum Beam Directorate and the Nuclear Fusion Directorate of the Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA).
On the occasion of entering its fourth year, QST is carrying out the major structural reorganization, aiming to reinforce its R&D efforts using its next-generation charged-particle cancer therapy device, known as the quantum scalpel. It will also continue to develop human resources to work in radiation emergency medicine.
The Quantum Life Science Directorate, a new organization directly under President Hirano, will take a nationwide approach, developing organic linkages among several research bases and cross-appointing re...more
On July 8, the Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) resumed vitrifying high-level radioactive waste (HLW) at its Tokai Reprocessing Plant. The waste resulted from the reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel at the plant. This is the first time that the action has been taken since a decommissioning plan for the plant was approved last month by the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA).
Under the plan, the decommissioning of all processes will require some seventy years. In addition to normal safety measures, an immediate top priority is to reduce the risk from radioactive waste held at the plant as soon as possible. Accordingly, the intention is to complete the vitrification of all the HLW by FY28 (March 31, 2028), at the latest.
After carrying out preparatory work, including the maintenance of remote equipment at the Tokai Vitrification Facility (TVF), JAEA resumed vitrification after a hiatus of some two years, and will produce fifty vitrified packages before mid-November. Thereafter, with further inspections and maintenance, the number of vitrified packages will be gradually increased with each cycle, in an effort to complete the whole task as early as possible, an...more