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COMPARISON OF WASTE MANAGEMENT ASPECTS OF DIRECT DISPOSAL OF SPENT FUEL AND REPROCESSING

Objective

THE OVERALL AIM OF THE WHOLE JOINT PROJECT IS TO COMPARE, ON THE BASIS OF THE COSTS AND RADIOLOGICAL IMPACT OF THE MANAGEMENT AND DISPOSAL OF ALL THE ASSOCIATED WASTES, REPROCESSING OF LIGHT WATER REACTOR FUEL WITH ITS DIRECT DISPOSAL BY EMPLACEMENT IN A DEEP GEOLOGICAL FORMATION ON LAND. THE STUDY INCLUDES AN ANALYSIS OF THE SENSITIVITY OF THE RESULTS TO VARIATIONS IN KEY ASSUMPTIONS, SUCH AS THE TIME FOR WHICH SPENT FUEL IS STORED PRIOR TO REPROCESSING. THE STUDY FOLLOWS THE MAIN BASIC SCENARIO AND ITS VARIATIONS, AS SPECIFIED FOR THE JOINT STUDY (20 GWE REACTOR PARK CONSISTING OF PWRS, ETC.).

THIS PART OF THE JOINT PROJECT COVERS THE DIRECT DISPOSAL PART OF THE COMPARISON AND MAINLY INVESTIGATES FOLLOWING AREAS:
- SPENT FUEL STORAGE IN ENGINEERED STRUCTURES WITH 3 OPTIONS OF PRECONDITIONING ((I) DISASSEMBLED ELEMENTS PRECONDITIONED ACCORDING TO THE NUKEM/DWK-PAE PROCESS; (II) DISASSEMBLED ELEMENTS PRECONDITIONED ACCORDING TO THE DWK-PROCESS; (III) DISASSEMBLED FUEL ELEMENTS, RODS CUT AND PRECONDITIONED ACCORDING TO THE DWK-PROCESS);
- CONDITIONING FOR FINAL DISPOSAL IN A SALT DOME REPOSITORY;
- DISPOSAL OF LOW AND INTERMEDIATE LEVEL WASTES IN THE KONRAD MINE (INCLUDING RADIOLOGICAL CONSEQUENCES AND CRITERIA).
An investigation has been carried out of aspects of the waste management of spent light water reactor fuel by direct disposal in a deep geological formation on land.

The areas covered are:
interim dry storage of spent fuel with three options of preconditioning;
conditioning of spent fuel for final disposal in a salt dome repository;
disposal of spent fuel (heat generating waste) in a salt dome repository;
disposal of medium and low level radioactive wastes in Konrad mine.

Dose commitments, effluent discharges and potential incidents were not found to vary significantly for the various conditioning options/salt dome repository sites.

Due to uncertainty in the cost estimates, in particular the disposal cost estimates, the variation between the three conditioning options examined is not considered as being significant. The specific total costs for the direct disposal stategy are estimated to lie in the range ECU 600 tp 700 per kg hm (basis 1988).
1. SPENT FUEL STORAGE AND PRECONDITIONING
A. EVALUATION OF THE BASIC DATA:
B. DETERMINATION OF THE STORAGE PHASE PRIOR TO THE PRECONDITIONING;
C. DETERMINATION OF THE PRECONDITIONING PROCESS (3 OPTIONS);
D. DETERMINATION OF THE INTERIM STORAGE PHASE AFTER PRECONDITIONING.

2. CONDITIONING FOR FINAL DISPOSAL
- PROCESS FLOW AND HANDLING SCHEMES, BUILDING STRUCTURE, EQUIPMENT, STAFF, MEDIA SUPPLY, SECONDARY WASTES CHARACTERISTICS;
- COSTS OF BUILDING, EQUIPMENT AND OPERATION;
- SAFETY PARAMETERS (ACCORDING TO 1.C.).

3. DISPOSAL OF LLW AND MLW
- COMPARISON OF WASTE CHARACTERISTICS WITH KONRAD ACCEPTANCE CRITERIA;
- MINE STRUCTURE AND HANDLING SCHEME, EQUIPMENT, STAFF, MATERIAL SUPPLY;
- SAFETY PARAMETERS (OCCUPATIONAL EXPOSURE, EFFLUENTS, INCIDENTS, LONG TERM SAFETY).

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts

Coordinator

Nukem GmbH
Address
Industriestraße 13
63755 Alzenau
Germany