It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Dr. Jacques-Philippe Berge on February 5th, 2017 at the age of 83 years. Dr. Berge made major scientific and engineering contributions in the fields of corrosion, chemistry & materials for energy. He had a major influence on the development of nuclear energy worldwide, particularly in France and in Europe, but also in Japan and in North America.
Jacques-Philippe Berge graduated from the ESPCI (École Supérieure de Physique et Chimie Industrielles de la ville de Paris). After his PhDs (Docteur-Ingénieur then Docteur-es-sciences), he joined EURATOM before being committed by EDF (Electricité de France) where he was Head of the Department of Materials Studies (Département Etudes des Matériaux) at the R&D Directorate and then the Director of the GDL (Groupement des Laboratoires) at the Thermal and Nuclear Production Directorate. He was heavily engaged in many scientific and engineering associations: he was the President of SF2M and COFREND, and an active member of CEFRACOR and SFEN in France, for instance. He was involved in the creation and the organisation of major conferences in nuclear energy, among them the “Fontevraud conferences” which run every 4 years on materials behavior in nuclear power plants, and the conferences on nuclear water chemistry (NPC) which take place every two years.
Dr. Berge became involved in the EFC by being an active member of the working party on Nuclear Corrosion (WP4). He was elected to chair the WP4 in 1986. During his chairmanship which encompassed nearly 10 years (1986-1994), he introduced great changes, dynamism and enthusiasm. English became the exchange language inside WP4 and he opened debates to the international scientific community. Within WP4, he edited the very first book in the EFC series of “Green Books” (1989) and in 1991 he organised the first workshop on “corrosion problems related to nuclear waste storage” (Handeck, Switzerland). At the end of his chairmanship, WP4 had 140 active individual members and was structured into nine main topic areas: Pressurized Water Reactors (PWRs), Boiling Water Reactors (BWRs), Fuel elements (cladding), high temperature reactors, liquid metal fast breeders, fusion reactors, reprocessing plants and waste management. He was an active member of the Board of Administrators (BoA) and was elected EFC Vice-President (1998-1999) and unanimously elected EFC President (2000-2001). He stayed involved in the administration of EFC and in 2009 he was nominated EFC Honorary Member by unanimous vote of the BoA and of the EFC General Assembly for his long and successful activity at EFC.
These are but a few examples of Berge’s energetic efforts to promote European and international exchanges. He greatly inspired an entire generation of scientists and engineers. He was a leading member in the field of materials and chemistry, promoting research, innovation and dissemination of information via meetings and publications.