YOGYAKARTA-Faculty of Engineering UGM, particularly Department of Engineering Physics, now begins to pioneer research on the latest nuclear reactor design. The research will consist of reactor power plants and reactors for isotope production that are used, for example, for health and industrial sectors. This was explained by Head of Nuclear Energy Technological Laboratory of the Faculty, Dr. Ir. Andang Widiharto, M.T, on the sidelines of UGM Joint Seminar and JICC with the theme "Fukhusima Accident and the Future of Nuclear Power Plant in Japan and the Prospect for Indonesia", in Meeting Room of Administration Office, Faculty of Engineering, Monday (3/10).
Andang said that nuclear energy research, especially for power plant, is expected to create nuclear reactor designs and concepts that are better than those already existing presently. "The concepts and designs of a reactor will be more fuel-efficient, for example by waste recycling. In addition, it is certainly better level of security system," Andang said.
Besides saving fuel, the concept of a future nuclear reactor design has better security system. This refers to the Fukushima incident some time ago. "Passive security system needs to be prepared for cases when, for example, the diesel engine stops working, or existing reserves," Andang said.
In view of Andang, the need for nuclear power in Indonesia is quite important, especially the level of national electricity demand which continues to increase. In 2025 it is predicted that electrical energy needs of Indonesia will reach 100 thousand mega-watts. Meanwhile, Indonesia in 2011 is just able to meet its need of about 30 thousand mega-watts. To meet the 70 thousand mega-watts shortage of power is not enough if only relying on energy from coal, oil and gas and geothermal. "Well, here's where one of the roles of nuclear energy comes to meet our electricity needs. We design a reactor concept that has the latest technology compared with the existing one today," he explained.
Previously, Dean of Faculty of Engineering, Ir. Tumiran, M. Eng., Ph.D., provided an overview of the national electrical energy consumption which is still smaller than the electrical energy consumption in several neighboring countries, such as Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam, and South Korea. Indonesia’s electrical energy consumption currently has reached 591 (kwh/capita), Malaysia (3490 kwh/capita), Singapore (8185 kwh/capita), Vietnam (799 kwh/capita) and South Korea (8853 kwh/capita). Meanwhile, the U.S reaches 13,654 kwh/capita and Canada 17,061 kwh/capita. "That’s Indonesia's electricity condition compared to the condition in neighboring countries. Moreover, the distribution is uneven and centered on Java Island," Tumiran said.
Head of Department of Engineering Physics, Prof. Ir. Sunarno, M. Eng., Ph.D., described that the event also presents some nuclear experts from Japan, namely Akira Kaneuji, Dr. Masamichi Chino, Dr. Yutaka Kawakami and Takehiko Mukaiyama. The seminar also aims to obtain information directly about the explosion that occurred at Fukushima in March 2011 and the handling by Japanese Government. There is also discussion on prospects for nuclear power plants in Japan. In addition, it is to provide perspective for Indonesia, which plans to build nuclear power plants for energy security.