The National Nuclear Program (NNP) was launched in 1968 and its structure was finalized once Romania decided upon implementing the CANDU type of nuclear reactor. At the same time, at the recommendation of an IAEA expert mission, a supporting infrastructure for the NNP was established, consisting of the Institute for Nuclear Technologies (ITN), on the Nuclear Platform in Mioveni, and the Nuclear Power Plants and Facilities Design Division (PCIN) of the Institute for Power Studies and Design (ISPE).
ITN, which subsequently became IRNE (Institute for Nuclear Energy Reactors) and later ICN (Institute for Nuclear Research), played a key role in proving the necessary technical and scientific support for launching NNP by developing techniques and technologies for manufacturing CANDU nuclear fuel bundles, testing experimental fuel elements in the TRIGA Research Reactor and evaluating performance in operation, in the Post-Irradiation Examination Lab.
PCIN later became IRNE-P (Design and Engineering Division of IRNE), then ISPE-ON (ISPE Nuclear Department) and CITON (Center of Technology and Engineering for Nuclear Projects). Its mission was to complete the development studies and site selection for the first nuclear power plant in Romania. As General Designer Authority, it conducted design and engineering activities for the CANDU-6 type Cernavoda Nuclear Power Plant, in collaboration with AECL (Canada), ANSALDO (Italy) and General Electric (USA).
Over the years, ICN and CITON have provided technical and scientific support for the National Nuclear Program by commissioning Cernavoda NPP Units 1 and 2, in 1996 and 2007 respectively, and by supplying the equipment and services necessary for them to operate under nuclear safety conditions.
Today, the Technologies for Nuclear Energy State Owned Company (RATEN), through its subsidiaries RATEN ICN and RATEN CITON, continues to provide scientific and technological support for the development of the Romanian Nuclear Power Program, for the safe and competitive operation of Units 1 and 2 from Cernavoda, maintaining the expertise for commissioning of Units 3 and 4 of Cernavoda and other new nuclear power plants, promoting advanced generation IV reactors and implementing the ALFRED demonstrator in Romania, safely storing spent fuel and radioactive waste, developing R&D Programs, education and training in the nuclear field, as well as sustaining international cooperation.
As a Romanian legal entity, under the authority of the Ministry of Economy, Energy and Business Environment, RATEN:
• spearheads nuclear energy research in Romania;
• has a research and testing infrastructure that is unique for Romania, among the very few of its kind worldwide;
• boasts specific knowledge and experience in the field;
• maintains extensive international relations.