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Research Programme of the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Construction and Reactor Safety (BMUB) on the safety of nuclear facilities

To implement its political aims, the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Construction and Reactor Safety (BMUB) requires scientifically sound criteria and assistance for its decisions. To this end, the departmental research of the BMUB makes a significant contribution as a bridge between research and government policy. It is oriented towards the priorities and objectives of the BMUB.

The medium-term research needs required here are described by the BMUB in its research framework.

This research framework is substantiated in the departmental research plan

This substantiation of the research framework through individual research and development projects is undertaken annually in the departmental research plan (known previously as the Environmental Research Plan - Umweltforschungsplan UFOPLAN). The BMUB publishes its departmental research plan online (only in German).

With the aid of these research and development projects and for the clarification of specialist and legal issues in the field of the safety of nuclear facilities, concrete decision aids are compiled to fulfil specialist tasks and to give political advice.

The projects encompass all relevant aspects

  • of nuclear safety,
  • of safety in nuclear supply and waste management, and
  • of the decommissioning of nuclear facilities.

They ensure that the international standard of science and technology forms a basis for the further development of nuclear policy and technical safety requirements. Furthermore, the investigations serve to solve fundamental and current safety-related problems of the operation of nuclear facilities.

The technical-scientific foundation is likewise developed through participation in international activities to further develop regulatory requirements and to evaluate experiences from other countries.

Task-based departmental research

In order that decisions can be made, scientific-technical and legal foundations must be created and complex issues must be assessed. This also requires the incorporation of external expertise. Budget funds from the BMUB are available for this within the framework of the task-based departmental research , to ensure that investigations, expert assessments and studies for the clarification of individual issues are allocated to universities, research institutes, expert organisations or private enterprises.

The findings of departmental research are used in

  • the amendment of laws and regulations,
  • the compilation of guidelines, rules, manuals and technical documents, and
  • the granting of licences.

Tasks of the Federal Office for the Safety of Nuclear Waste Management (BfE)

The BfE supports the BMUB in the planning, coordination and implementation of research and development projects. This includes

  • the formulation of relevant parts of the departmental research plan,
  • priority setting in light of budgets,
  • support with the inter-ministerial coordination of research projects,
  • the allocation and the specialist and administrative support for research and development projects,
  • specialist analysis and the documentation of results.

By funding research projects, the BMUB directly and indirectly makes a significant contribution to the composition and retention of expertise in nuclear safety within authorities, expert organisations, operators and manufacturers.

State of 2017.05.30

© Federal Office for the Safety of Nuclear Waste Management