Page 1 ATL03
Thumbnail profile: Lower Austria
Lower Austria is one of Austria’s nine federal states. With a land area of almost 20,000 km² and a population of 1.6 million, it is Austria’s largest state. In terms of population, it ranks second only to Vienna, which also is a federal state but is completely encircled by Lower Austria.
Geography and Climate
The name Austria means "eastern realm" and is derived from the Old German word Ostarrîchi. “Lower” Austria designates where this state is situated on the Danube River, which flows from west to east . This state borders on Slovakia, the Czech Republic and the other Austrian states of Upper Austria, Styria and Burgenland.
Although Austria is mountainous, the high alpine chains to the west gradually recede as one travels eastwards down into the Danube Valley, Lower Austria and onwards towards the country’s capital, Vienna.
In the east of the country, in the Pannonian Plain and along the Danube valley, the climate shows continental features with less rain than the alpine areas. Although Austria is cold and snowy in winter, summer temperatures can be rather warm, reaching 35ºC.
Radionuclide laboratory ATL03 is located in the small town of Seibersdorf in the province of Lower Austria, about 35 km southeast of Vienna, on the premises of the Austrian Research Centers, Seibersdorf (ARCS). ATL03 is part of the radionuclide network making up the CTBTO's International Monitoring System (IMS).
This site was dedicated by the Austrian Government as a nuclear research centre soon after the country re-acquired its post-World War II independence in the mid-1950s. The aim was to designate a site close enough to Vienna to accommodate commutes to/from the city while still remaining outside the city limits. The first operating licenses were granted in 1958. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) also has its laboratories here, adjacent to the ARCS complex.
ARCS hosts other nuclear research fields as well, such as biogenetics, biomedical engineering, energy, radiation safety and applications, life sciences, nano-system technologies, nuclear engineering and technology transfer.
ATL03 is the only IMS facility located on Austrian territory. Austria is host to the CTBTO's headquarters in Vienna.