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AIM-CI > Keynotes

Melanie Rickard

Monday February 5, 2023 | 9:00 - 10:45 AM

Melanie Rickard
Director General
Directorate of Assessment and Analysis
Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission

Keynote Title: Sustainability from a Nuclear Regulator's Perspective

Abstract: As a lifecycle nuclear regulator, the CNSC plays a role in energy sustainability by ensuring that nuclear projects are carried out safely, at all stages, from cradle to grave. For nuclear power plants, there are several aspects of regulation that enable, with proper management and oversight, plants to operate for well over 60 years. The role of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) in its oversight of major component replacement and/or Refurbishment activities, as supported by CNSC REGDOC 2.3.1, Conduct of Licensed Activities: Construction and Commissioning Programs, as well as the linkages to the conduct of a Periodic Safety Review, will be discussed. Aging Management and Fitness for Service play an important role in terms of integrity management of systems and structures. Some recent experiences with the refurbishment of the Darlington Nuclear Generating Station carried out between 2016 and 2023 will be provided. Additionally, Canadian experience with the discovery of elevated Hydrogen concentrations within regions of the pressure tube will be highlighted as an ongoing area of investigation and research regarding the extended operation of pressure tubes in certain CANDU plants in Canada.

Biography: Melanie Rickard is the Director General of the Directorate of Assessment and Analysis at the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, Canada’s nuclear regulator.

She leads a team that performs safety assessments (design, engineering and safety analysis) of existing CANDU reactors and advanced nuclear/small modular reactors in Canada. Her team produces technical assessments related to licensing and compliance; plans and reacts to nuclear events and emergencies; represents the CNSC as leading experts in various nuclear safety fields and influences and contributes to the development of the regulatory framework. With 23 years at the CNSC, she has had a variety of experience in numerous facets of nuclear regulation.

Melanie holds a Masters degree in Chemistry from the University of New Brunswick.

When not at work Melanie is busy with her husband, her 15 year old son and their dog, Lochlan. She and her family love to stay active together, biking, skiing, cooking and travelling.



AJ McKean

Monday February 5, 2023 | 9:00 - 10:45 AM

AJ McKean
Operations Supervisor
Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA)

Keynote: Integrity Management for Federally Regulated Pipelines: PHMSA's Data Update

Abstract: PHMSA will provide insight into the overall categorization by incidents for Gas Distribution, Gas Transmission, and Hazardous Liquid pipelines. This presentation will communicate the overall reporting by leading cause of failure for these systems for the last 20 years.

Biography: Amy Jo "AJ" McKean began in 2018 at PHMSA as a General Engineer (Inspector) in the Central Region and now serves as an Operations Supervisor in the Central Region.

AJ has 27 years in the pipeline industry as an operator and consultant to the industry. She has worked for Williams, Southern Star and TransCanada (Keystone XL) in engineering/operations/project management.

AJ holds a bachelor of science degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Missouri – Rolla (S&T).



Isabelle Chartier

Monday February 5, 2023 | 9:00 - 10:45 AM

Isabelle Chartier
Director of Research and Innovation
Hydro-Quebec's Research Institute (IREQ)

Keynote Title: Asset Management at Hydro-Québec as a Mean Towards a Decarbonized and Prosperous Québec

Abstract: With the challenges related to the energy transition, the impact of climate change and the decarbonization objectives of Quebec by 2050, Hydro-Québec has an ambitious action plan for 2035. In a context of asset sustainability and strong growth in demand, asset management appears to be an essential subject to enable our managers to make informed decisions based on reliability and inherent risk. It is in this context that we decided last year to set up a corporate innovation program in asset management and reliability in order to join forces to address short- and long-term issues. The presentation outlines the contribution of asset management in general at Hydro-Québec and its innovation program in asset management in particular in achieving the ambitious action plan 2035 aiming at decarbonization objectives of Quebec by 2050.

Biography: Isabelle Chartier is director of research and innovation assets at the Hydro-Québec research center. She has 20 years of service within Hydro-Québec with experience in the fields of energy efficiency and R&D. For 10 years now, she has been responsible for managing research teams and a research portfolio for production, transmission and distribution assets.

Holder of a Master's degree in business administration from the University of Quebec in Montreal and passionate about outdoor sports.