Application of optimization methods for nuclear energy system performance assessment by the MESSAGE software
The future nuclear energy systems should meet the following basic requirements: to be resource-sufficient and produce a low amount of wastes in the long run; to be cost effective; to maintain the necessary level of safety and reliability; to ensure the effective resistance to nuclear weapons proliferation. Considering the significant uncertainty specific to the problem field, the uncertainty analysis is another inevitable step expected to provide better grounds for judgments. Uncertainties may not be ignored in the assessment process and their examination should enable the decision maker to reach a conclusion regarding the stability of results.
This paper delineates the multi-objective optimization and uncertainty treatment modules for the IAEA energy planning software MESSAGE intended for multi-objective optimization and sustainability assessments of innovative nuclear energy systems with account of uncertainty. Some results of implementation of these tools for multi-objective nuclear energy system optimization studies are presented. The developed software allows searching for compromises between the conflicting factors that determine the nuclear energy systems’ effectiveness and calculating corresponding trade-off rates; carrying out comparative multi-criteria analysis of alternatives as well as choosing, ranking, and sorting corresponding options taking into account the evolution dynamics, structure and organization of a nuclear fuel cycle and the most important system constraints and restrictions. The application of the state-of-the-art multi-objective optimization and uncertainty treatment methods for integrated, analytical and foresight studies on a nuclear energy system deployment provide added values to an analysis of possible options and give reasonable stable well-interpreted and decision-making oriented results clarifying the pro and cons of considered alternatives on quantitative methodologically-proven and well-elaborated foundations. Wide application of these techniques allows searching for compromises between the conflicting factors that determine nuclear energy system performance, calculating corresponding trade-off rates as well as carrying out comparative multi-criteria alternative analyses, choosing, ranking, and sorting corresponding options.
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