Horizon Europe is complemented by the Euratom 2021-2025 research and training programme. The Euratom Research and Training Programme uses mainly the same instruments and rules for participation as Horizon Europe.
It focuses on Fusion, nuclear safety, radiation protection and radioactive waste management and decommissioning.
The Euratom Programme complements the achievement of Horizon Europe’s objectives including in the context of the energy transition as well as contributing to the implementation of the European fusion roadmap.
This programme has a budget of EUR 1.4 billion over the period 2021- 2025.
Euratom Programme has direct and indirect actions. Directactions are activities undertaken by the Commission's Joint Research Centre (within a separate work programme). Indirectactions are research activities undertaken by multi-partner consortia.
The indirect actions of the Euratom Programme focus on 2 areas:
- nuclear fusion research and development;
- nuclear fission, safety and radiation protection.
The new programme places increased emphasis on non-powerapplicationofnucleartechnology. In this regard, the medical field is the most prominent and EURATOM is supporting the European’s Beating Cancer Plan (cf. ionising radiation used for diagnostics and therapy). There is also much potential in the application of nuclear science to fields like agriculture, environment and space.
The new programme contains five main novelties:
Fusion, nuclear safety, radioactive waste management and decommissioning, and radiation protection remain at the core of the Euratom research. The new Programme has five new features:
- Simplification. The structure of specific objectives has been streamlined and the number of objectives have been reduced.
- Education and Training. These activities have been strengthened to maintain and develop further nuclear expertise and knowledge in Europe. Nuclear researchers will be eligible to the Postdoctoral Fellowships of the Marie Skłodowska Curie actions to enhance the mobility of nuclear scientists.
- Synergies with Horizon Europe. A clearer legal base for synergies with Horizon Europe has been provided.
- Synergies between actions. It will also develop synergies with other areas (e.g. artificial intelligence and robotics). Regarding synergies between indirect actions and direct actions, the Commission's Joint Research Centre will complement activities of the consortia receiving Euratom grants in areas where it has the necessary competences, expertise and dedicated infrastructure. The JRC will not receive funding from indirect actions. Closer coordination and co-design of Work Programmes will allow nuclear researchers to better access to Joint Research Centre expertise and its research infrastructure. Where relevant, the JRC will complement activities of the consortia receiving Euratom grants.
- Focus on health issues. The new Euratom Work Programme addresses research on cross-sectorial fertilisation and non-power applications. An emblematic example is the use of ionising radiation to support safe and optimised medical procedures, contributing to Europe’s Beating Cancer action plan. This will be implemented through a new Partnership initiative and topic in the Euratom work programme for 2021-22.