The Ministry of Science and ICT released the South Korean government’s nuclear technology development plan for next year on December 18.
According to the plan, a total of 203.6 billion won (US$183 million) will be invested for R&D in the nuclear industry next year and approximately one-third of the investment will be spent on nuclear power plant safety, security and decommissioning technology. For reference, 60 billion won (US$54 million) has been invested in these fields this year.
The government is going to increase the utility of its nuclear technology by combining it with sectors such as medical and biotech. In this context, the technology will be utilized for marine nuclear system development, neutron radiographic testing and so on while radiological technology is going to be applied to the environment industry, material development, etc. 64.3 billion won (US$57 million) will be invested to this end.
The government also focuses on the export of the technological elements including nuclear power plant fuels and software for nuclear power plant analysis, too. At the same time, the ministry will support the preparation of future energy sources like nuclear fusion and provides more support for the Hanaro research reactor. In this regard, technical support will be provided for the production of ITER procurement items such as vacuum vessels and thermal shields, and high-performance plasma operation technologies shall be developed by the use of the Korea Superconducting Tokamak Advanced Research (KSTAR).