Interview

with Meera Venkatesh, Director of Division of Physical and Chemical Sciences in the Department of Nuclear Applications, at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)

Edited by Gaetano Borrelli

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When common people “think” about nuclear, the feeling is on energy production or “bomb” technology. De facto, scientists use a large amount of nuclear data for different research activities. How is the preservation of this fundamental knowledge handled, being an invaluable resource for nuclear science?

Yes; ‘Nuclear Data’ is the fundamental underpinning need for all the applications that involve nuclear reactions or ‘nuclear phenomena’. It is not only important to preserve the invaluable nuclear data, but it is also essential to continuously update and add new data to incorporate the recent research work done all through the world. And, while doing so, it is indeed necessary to validate and check the published data. Recognizing the important role of nuclear data for the nuclear community, the IAEA has been providing ‘Nuclear Data Services’ since more than 50 years. The Nuclear Data Section, through engagement of experts on different aspects of nuclear/atomic/molecular data development and assessment, provides a variety of databases to suit the needs of researchers from different fields of specialty. One may visit the nuclear data services page (https://www.iaea.org/resources/databases/nuclear-data-services) for more details. It may also be of interest to know that an App, “Isotope |Browser”, that can provide the properties of more than 4000 isotopes, suitable for i-phones as well as android devices, has been developed and can be freely downloaded (http://play.google.com/store/apps). …