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PReliminary Demonstration Test for Disposal of High Level Radioactive Waste in CLAY (CERBERUS)

Publications

The Cerberus project: Demonstration test to study the near-field effects of an HLW canister in argillaceous formation

Author(s): NOYNAERT L ET AL (SCK/CEN, Mol (BE))
Published in: EUR 18151 EN (1998) 146pp., FS, ECU 26.50, 1998, Page(s) 146, ISBN 92-828-2533-7

The Praclay project: Demonstration test on the Belgian disposal facility concept for high activity vitrified waste

Author(s): ONDRAF/NIRAS (Ondraf/NIRAS, Bruxelles (BE))
Published in: EUR 18047 EN (1998) 41pp., FS, ECU 8.50, 1998, Page(s) 41, ISBN 92-828-2369-5

Exploitable results

Follow up and monitoring of the long term behaviour of the concrete lined part, also called Test Drift, of the HADES underground research facility, of its terminal shotcreted front and of the surrounding clay mass. Measurements around the Test Drift show a slow stabilization. Comparison between pressure and deformation on the different measuring sections show a good agreement of the convergence and confinement curves. Comparison between direct measurements of the lining pressure (by way of pressure cells) and calculated ones (from load cell measurements) showed that pressure cells measurements were systemically lower than those of the load cells. This was due to a significant drift of the zero point value of the internal pressure transducer. After recalibration, all measures were in good agreement and pressure build-up was similar. Measurements of the displacements in the clay mass above the Test Drift (settlingmeter and inclinometer devices installed before construction) were compared to those, at the same distance of the gallery axis, of the extensometer installed during the construction: the delayed convergence (the displacement after installation of the lining, measured by the second device) is only a small part of the total one. This is confirmed by the comparison between the clay wall displacement (inferred from the first type of devices) and the lining diametrical convergence.
This project aims at demonstrating the feasibility of an underground repositroy for high level radioactive waste. The constructive and operational soundness, as well as the long term safety of the repository has to be demonstrated. So far, the project has focussed on general design aspects and on gathering technical data needed to carry out long term assessments. To this end, an underground laboratory was built to carry out on site investigations into one of the rock formations that could host the repository. The project is now focussing on the demonstration of the technical feasibility of boring and completing disposal galleries, of handling radioactive waste canisters and on the near field effects of the gallery construction and of the radioactive waste thermal output. This will be carried out by simulating in the underground laboratory a 30m long disposal gallery over a 5-year period.

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