On 28 June, the Materials Ageing Institute, the one-of-a-kind centre of excellence specialising in the ageing of nuclear power plant materials, commemorated its 10th  anniversary, surrounded by a hundred guests from around the world. Watch the images recapping the highlights of this sunny day of festive and convivial celebrations. A beautiful example of the dynamic energy in the international nuclear sector.

The anniversary was celebrated in the wings of the World Nuclear Exhibition, making it a unique opportunity to convene some one hundred partners who helped make the institute a success, including the five full members: Kansai (Japan), EPRI (USA), CGN (China), REA (Russia) and EDF Energy (United Kingdom).

On the agenda: greetings from Dominique Minière(1), Bernard Salha(2) and testimonies of the five MAI full members, tours of flagship laboratories (Vercors, Microscopics, the Energy Loop, FATCOR2 and Stress Corrosion Cracking), conferences in tandem with partners to discuss international cooperation projects, such as stress corrosion cracking, non-destructive evaluation methods and vessels internals.

The day ended on a friendly note with a birthday cocktail reception and a concert by the EDF Les Renardières jazz ensemble. There was also a ceremonial cutting of the birthday cake decorated in MAI colours by Hing Ip Wong, the MAI’s current director, and the two former directors of the institute, Régis Nhili and Jan van der Lee. The visit to the Fontainebleau Chateau at the end of the day was a big hit, especially for foreign partners.

In 10 years, the MAI has succeeded in uniting and convening the world’s major energy companies to address common interests relating to the ageing of materials in a context where the ongoing operation of 40-year old nuclear power plants is a key challenge to continue the safe production of abundant, competitive and carbon-free electricity. Over the last 10 years, the institute has received more than 100 million Euro in cumulative budget. As it stands today, the MAI represents over two-thirds of the World’s installed nuclear power and benefits from close to 5000 combined years of reactor operating experience. In the current nuclear context and 10 years after its creation, the MAI’s reasons for being are more relevant than ever.

This celebration made it possible to consolidate current and future international collaboration within the MAI, for the greater benefit of the nuclear sector. The many touching testimonials showed that the MAI has managed to develop strong, lasting bonds that go well beyond purely technical interactions.

This day confirmed the need for and the dynamism of cooperative international nuclear projects. As Dominique Minière said, “let us wish the MAI a long life! After all, that is precisely its specialty…!”


  • (1) Group Senior Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer, Generation and Engineering, Existing Nuclear and Thermal Fleet.
  • (2) Senior Executive Vice President, Head of EDF Research and Development

 Contact: Hing Ip Wong – hing-ip.wong@edf.fr

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