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DESTRUCTION OF CONTAMINATED SODIUM OF THE PRIMARY CIRCUIT OF EXPERIMENTAL RAPSODIE REACTOR

Objective

French regulations prohibit, for safety reasons, the disposal of sodium with other low-level radwaste in shallow land burial. The development of an industrial-scale procedure for the transformation of sodium into an acceptable product is thus a useful target generally for all LMFBRs.

The CEA has developed, at laboratory-scale, the so-called NOAH procedure transforming sodium by controlled addition of water into aqueous sodium hydroxide.

The objective of the present contract is to conceive and manufacture an industrial-scale facility (600 Kg/d), based on the NOAH process and its application to 13 t (out of a total of 37 t) of contaminated sodium (specific activity 4.1 KBq/g, mainly caesium-137) from the RAPSODIE pilot FBR. The facility will be conceived such (mobile system, limited dimensions, easy adaptation), that it can be used on other FBR-sites.

The facility will be installed at the containment building of RAPSODIE (DESORA programme). Contractual work will be implemented in cooperation between 2 departments of the CEA-UDIN (Unite de Demantelement des Installations Nucleaires) and LEPE (Laboratoire d'Etudes, de Procedes et d'Expertises).

In particular, the generation of specific data on costs, working hours and job doses as well as on the amount of created secondary waste is considered as an important objective of this project.
The Commissariat a l'Energie atomique (CEA) has developed, at laboratory scale, the so called NOAH procedure transforming sodium by controlled addition of water into aqueous sodium hydroxide. The objective of the present contract is to conceive and manufacture an industrial scale facility, based on the NOAH process and its application to contaminated sodium from the RAPSODIE pilot fast breeder reactor (FBR). The facility will be conceived in such a way that it can be used on other FBR sites.

All basic studies and the draft safety report are completed. The equipment, divided into 4 groups, is being manufactured. The construction of the soda group is finished and the plant is installed in the containment building. Active commissioning tests are planned.
WORK PROGRAMME

1. Conceptional studies

1.1. Studies for the industrial application of NOAH (LEPE)
1.2. Studies for the installation of NOAH into the RAPSODIE containment building, including the needed auxiliary equipment (UDIN)

2. Manufacturing, installation and testing of equipment

2.1. Manufacturing and installation of equipment (UDIN)
2.2. Commissioning, testing of equipment and operator training with non-radioactive sodium (UDIN)

3. Main operation for the transformation of sodium (UDIN)

4. Conditioning and disposal of generated liquid waste

4.1. Investigations into possible ways for utilisation or treatment of waste including associated costs (LEPE)
4.2. Temporary storage of liquid waste (UDIN)

5. Technical and economical balance on the feasibility for an industrial application of NOAH (UDIN)

5.1. Preliminary balance before main operation
5.2. Final balance after main operation, including generation of specific data on costs, radioactive job doses, working time and secondary waste arisings, derived from the execution of items 3. and 4.

Coordinator

Commissariat à l'Energie Atomique (CEA)
Address
Centre D'études De Cadarache Sere-ders
13113 Saint-paul-lez-durance
France

Participants (3)

ASC
France
Address

75001 Paris
COMMISSARIAT A L'ENERGIE ATOMIQUE
France
Address
Rue De La Federation 31-33
75015 Paris
Novatome SA
France
Address
La Boursière - Rn 186
92350 Le Plessis-robinson