There are two main purposes of the preparatory phase. Firstly, to ensure that the team leader and the IAEA coordinator have a full understanding of the scope of the proposed appraisal, particularly the specific issues that the host country wishes to be included. Secondly, to ensure that the host country is fully informed about the ORPAS overall process and the procedures followed by the appraisal team either in the required involvement from the host country or in the style in which the appraisal is conducted.
The preparatory phase includes:
- Development of agreement between the IAEA and the host country on the objectives and scope of the proposed appraisal;
- Research by the IAEA coordinator on any background information relevant to the appraisal;
- Identification of all IAEA IT systems that contain information on host country (i.e. RASIMS) that can store centrally and make available all the mission information to the team members
- Identification of information that must remain confidential;
- Preparation for the preparatory mission by host country counterpart and the IAEA coordinator; and
- A preparatory visit by the potential team leader and the IAEA coordinator.
How does IAEA gather information?
The ORPAS has a modular structure designed to be tailored to the three set of participants that may be involved in an ORPAS mission: the Regulator(s), the Operators (Practices) and the TSP. A set of questionnaires has been prepared addressed to each participant in order to structure the gathering of the necessary information.
The questionnaires have been incorporated in computer software called Self-assessment of Regulatory Infrastructure for Safety (SARIS) which automates and streamlines the use of the questionnaires and the production of reports. It is strongly recommended that SARIS is used for the completion of the questionnaires. In case of this is not possible, other suitable methods maybe used for the same question sets.
Why conduct a preparation and preparatory mission?
In this phase, the team leader and the IAEA coordinator, in co-operation with the counterpart of host country, will determine the need for a preparatory mission. The purpose of the preparatory mission visit is to become orientated in the host country, meet involved persons, assess the magnitude of the task, propose an initial team expert and prepare the schedule for the appraisal mission. A preparatory mission visit will be necessary for most appraisals and is essential for appraisals addressing nuclear reactor or nuclear fuel cycle facilities.