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FP5

Impact of the Excavation Disturbed or Damaged Zone (EDZ) on the Performance of Radioactive Waste Geological Repositories, Proceedings of a European Commission CLUSTER Conference and Workshop

Funded under: FP5-EAECTP C

Abstract

Management of high-level, long-lived radioactive waste is an important environmental issue today for all nuclear-power-generating countries. Deep geologic disposal of these wastes is one of the promising options. Potential rock types being considered for geologic disposal include crystalline rocks, salt, indurated clay, and plastic clay. An essential feature that needs to be considered for the long-term safety of a high-level waste underground repository is the excavation disturbed/damaged zone near the repository, and its hydromechemical and geochemical evolution with time.
The creation of an excavation disturbed or damaged zone is expected for all man-made openings in geologic formations. Macro- and microfracturing, and in general a rearrangement of rock structures, will occur in this zone, resulting in drastic increases of permeability to flow, mainly through the fractures and cracks induced by excavation. The implications of such high permeability and its time evolution under various repository scenarios need to be evaluated as part of waste repository safety assessment. Various issues, such as processes creating fractures in the excavation damaged zone, the degree of permeability increase, and the potential for sealing or healing (with permeability reduction) in the zone, all need to be part of the evaluation.

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Record Number: 6537 / Last updated on: 2005-01-04
Category: PROC
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