NNR Operational Safety Senior Specialist, Vanessa Maree, won 1st prize for her poster on Regulatory Environmental Surveillance Initiatives at Koeberg Nuclear Power Station (KNPS) at the 25th WiN Global Annual Conference which took place in China from 28th August – 1st September. Vanessa submitted an abstract under the topic of Nuclear Energy Environment. The abstract was evaluated on the contents of the proposed paper and accepted by the Programme Committee for presentation as a poster during the conference. There were 80 posters presented in total. While the attendees were allowed to vote for the best posters a panel of experienced nuclear professionals formally judged the posters based on quality, relevance of the information displayed, layout and design.

Vanessa with her prizes.

The objective of the conference was to exchange information on the latest developments, trends and challenges in the nuclear field, provide opportunities for the members to share experience amongst each other, communicate and raise public awareness of the benefits of nuclear science & technology and foster interest among women pursuing careers in nuclear related fields. The conference highlighted the vital role that women play in all applications of nuclear science and technology. It also enabled the women to have opportunities for global networking, a platform to exchange ideas, technical visits and obtain current information on the nuclear programmes and facilities around the world.

The winning poster, Regulatory Environmental Surveillance Initiatives at Koeberg Nuclear Power Station (KNPS), speaks about two critical NNR projects that have been derived from a needs analysis by reviewing national and international standards and by integrating lessons learnt from the Fukushima accident. The poster presents the milestones of the projects; the challenges encountered and the unexpected issues during implementation. These projects are; the implementation of an online radiation monitoring system and the establishment of an NNR Laboratory capacity.

Currently the NNR is dependent on the on and off-site radiological information supplied directly by the licensees. The NNR does not have a full in-house capability to collect and analyse the samples hence services one of its license holders. These projects will enable the NNR to monitor normal and incident/ accident conditions during an event at the KNPS, enhance the implementation of the protective actions based on independent data and provide confidence to the public of the Regulator’s capacity to oversee the safety of operations.

“The presentation of the poster at the conference is a long process and includes extensive work if you are a perfectionist like me. The final aim is to be proud of the poster and portray the successful work accomplished by the NNR as a regulator driven by excellence” said Vanessa.

In 2015 Vanessa also presented a winning poster which focused on the role played by the regulator in encouraging and promoting the participation of women in the nuclear space. The poster also outlined the challenges faced by female regulatory inspectors with specific reference to nuclear power plant inspections.

About WiN Global

Founded in 1993, Women in Nuclear Global (WiN Global) is a global organisation which supports and encourages women working in nuclear industries throughout the world, particularly energy and radiation applications. WiN Global aims to promote the understanding and public awareness of the benefits of nuclear and radiation applications through a series of active networks, national, regional and international. Chapters have their own domestic WiN networks, often very active.