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Emirati engineers embark on FANR nuclear training programme

posted on 11/01/2016: 2392 views

The UAE's Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation, FANR, has welcomed to its staff nine Emirati engineers freshly graduated from UAE universities as part of its innovative strategy to build long-term sustainability by developing Emirati talent in the nuclear sector.

The group is embarking upon a year-long nuclear regulatory development programme that will provide its members with the fundamental knowledge they need in order to understand the technical concepts applicable to nuclear engineering and regulation.

"We're proud to bring on board such a promising generation of young Emiratis who will contribute substantively to the UAE's energy future," said FANR Director-General, Christer Viktorsson.

The first-of-its-kind programme for the new engineers is based on a modular approach with a mix of both technical and soft skills development. Consisting of 10 modules, it kicks off with a two-week FANR orientation programme and an introductory course in nuclear engineering.

With the addition of the new engineers, FANR now has a core of 34 Emirati engineers and health physicists who represent FANR's sustained commitment to overseeing peaceful, safe and secure nuclear activities in the UAE. FANR also supports the mid-career development of its staff, and to date 26 Emirati staff members hold masters or doctorate degrees in the nuclear field.

"Nuclear energy has a bright future in the UAE, which can't rely on petroleum alone to produce its electricity in the future," said new programme engineer, Fatima Al Hammadi, who recently received a degree in mechanical engineering from Khalifa University in Abu Dhabi. "The FANR programme is a great opportunity for people like me to help the UAE meets its energy goals."

The second part of the programme consists of an intensive 13-week nuclear fundamentals course at Khalifa University and focusses on the "3-S" nuclear principles: Safety, Security and Safeguards. Next, the engineers will undergo four eight-week job rotation modules followed by an overseas study tour where they will visit an operating plant, complete basic control room simulator orientation and experience a waste storage site. The entire programme will then be capped with participation in a Nuclear Management course provided by the International Atomic Energy Agency.

"The FANR programme offers excellent choices for the new staff members compared to other engineering employers in the country," said programme engineer, Amal Bin Lootah, a recent civil engineering graduate from Khalifa University.

After deciding to pursue nuclear energy in 2009, the UAE reached an agreement for South Korea to supply the UAE's first nuclear power station. Four reactors are currently under construction at the Barakah Nuclear Power Plant in the Western Region of Abu Dhabi. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


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