Visiting scientist from Kiev and Fraunhofer team conduct research into decommissioning destroyed nuclear infrastructure
Ukrainian robotics specialist at Fraunhofer IWS in Dresden
The Fraunhofer-Zukunftsstiftung (Fraunhofer Future Foundation) is promoting scientific exchange between German and Ukrainian researchers to help repair war damage and prepare for rebuilding using climate and environmentally friendly technologies. To this end, the foundation is fully funding Ukrainian experts and their research activities with research stays of up to six months at Fraunhofer institutes in Germany. Oleksandr Proskurin, who has joined Fraunhofer IWS in Dresden, is the first visiting scientist from Ukraine to take part in the initiative.
The Ukrainian robotics specialist has been working with researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Material and Beam Technology IWS in Dresden as a visiting scientist since the beginning of 2023. Together, they are developing methods to decommission infrastructure destroyed and contaminated by nuclear radiation using laser technology. Proskurin is a robotics expert at the Institute for Safety Problems of Nuclear Power Plants (ISP NPP), part of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine (NASU). “During Oleksandr’s six-month research stay in Dresden, we’ll be using the example of the damaged nuclear power plant in Chernobyl to examine which innovative methods can be used to safely analyze and remove radioactive material from Chernobyl sarcophagus,” says Dr. Andreas Wetzig, Technology Field Manager for Cutting and Joining at Fraunhofer IWS in Dresden, describing the project. The project findings will then be applied to the management of other infrastructure that has been destroyed and contaminated by radiation.
The Fraunhofer Future Foundation’s initiative will help ensure that the latest findings from applied research are taken into account when repairing war damage, and in particular when rebuilding Ukraine. The focus of the research is therefore on sustainable construction, climate-friendly energy, the resource-efficient production of goods, and secure and resilient supply structures. “Rebuilding a country is a great opportunity to redesign infrastructure from scratch. We want to help Ukrainians rebuild their country in such a way that it meets the requirements of sustainable development, ensuring it is ecologically intact, socially balanced and economically sustainable,” says Prof. Hans-Jörg Bullinger, Chairman of the Fraunhofer Future Foundation, of the foundation’s objective.
For its initiative, the Fraunhofer Future Foundation can draw on the expertise of the 76 Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft institutes and research units across Germany. In the future, further research projects are to be developed and implemented jointly with Ukrainian experts in cooperation with companies and the public sector in both countries.
About the Fraunhofer Future Foundation
The Fraunhofer Future Foundation supports and shapes the transformation to a sustainable economy and way of life.
Its support enables the development of products, services and business models that make an important contribution to resolving global challenges. The foundation was founded in 2008. In line with its statute, it exclusively funds projects at institutes of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft.
Fraunhofer Future Foundation
Hansastrasse 27 c, 80686 Munich
Phone +49 89 1205-01080