UK and Japanese Collaboration at Symposium on Fukushima Daiichi Research

The University of Bristol recently hosted a three-day symposium that brought together researchers from the UK and Japan to discuss research into the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant accident of 2011. The event was generously supported by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) London.

The theme of the symposium was intentionally wide and encompassed the entire tranche of work being undertaken around the world to analyse the short and long-term environmental impacts of the FDNPP accident. This topic is now more important than ever, with the clean-up of the contaminated Fukushima Prefecture continuing at an unabating pace and with the repopulation of formerly evacuated citizens back to their homes. The current field of research is cross-cutting across numerous scientific disciplines – including physics, chemistry, ecology and materials sciences; with this symposium seeking to establish a forum for valuable discussions.

The symposium was opened by the director of the JSPS London, Prof. Nobou Ueno, emphasising the bi-directional collaboration between Japan and the UK in the longer-term. Prof. Ueno noted that the University of Bristol was one of the UK universities that was most significantly engaged in collaborations with Japan and that this was evident by the networks that had already been established and impressive history of output.

Guest Speakers from Japan

Visiting overseas speakers at the event included those from the Japanese Atomic Energy Agency's  newly established Collaborative Laboratories for Advanced Decommissioning Science (CLADS) and Kyoto University Research Reactor Institute (KURRI).

Talks at the event included those from Prof. Nick Beresford (Centre for Ecology and Hydrogeology), drawing comparisons between Fukushima and Chernobyl; Prof. Neil Willey (UWE), on the radiation induced damage to plants; Prof. Philip Thomas (UoB), on the societal impact of a large nuclear accident such as Fukushima, Dr. Neil Fuller (University of Portsmouth), on the impact of radiation on marine life; Dr. Tomas Martin (UoB), on new analytical technique to isotopically evaluate fallout particulate; and Dr. Rob Malkin (UoB), on the current monitoring ongoing on the FDNPP site.

This served as an opportunity to further strengthen the links between Bristol and these institutions, in particular the JAEA with whom the university has a five year partnership agreement.

Japan Society for the Promotion of Science

Information about the JSPS can be found on their website, including their newsletter and UK & Ireland Alumni Assocation. A big thank you to their sponsorship of this event.


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