• Title, Summary, Keyword: Spent nuclear fuel management

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Technology Trends in Spent Nuclear Fuel Cask and Dry Storage (사용후핵연료 운반용기 및 건식저장 기술 동향)

  • Shin, Jung Cheol;Yang, Jong Dae;Sung, Un Hak;Ryu, Sung Woo;Park, Yeong Woo
    • Transactions of the Korean Society of Pressure Vessels and Piping
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    • v.16 no.1
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    • pp.110-116
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    • 2020
  • As the management plan for domestic spent nuclear fuel is delayed, the storage of the operating nuclear power plant is approaching saturation, and the Kori 1 Unit that has reached its end of operation life is preparing for the dismantling plan. The first stage of dismantling is the transfer of spent nuclear fuel stored in storage at plants. The spent fuel management process leads to temporary storage, interim storage, reprocessing and permanent disposal. In this paper, the technical issues to be considered when transporting spent fuel in this process are summarized. The spent fuels are treated as high-level radioactive waste and strictly managed according to international regulations. A series of integrity tests are performed to demonstrate that spent fuel can be safely stored for decades in a dry environment before being transferred to an intermediate storage facility. The safety of spent fuel transport container must be demonstrated under normal transport conditions and virtual accident conditions. IAEA international standards are commonly applied to the design of transport containers, licensing regulations and transport regulations worldwide. In addition, each country operates a physical protection system to reduce and respond to the threat of radioactive terrorism.

MANAGING SPENT NUCLEAR FUEL FROM NONPROLIFERATION, SECURITY AND ENVIRONMENTAL PERSPECTIVES

  • Choi, Jor-Shan
    • Nuclear Engineering and Technology
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    • v.42 no.3
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    • pp.231-236
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    • 2010
  • The growth in global energy demand and the increased recognition of the impacts of carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel plants have aroused a renewed interest on nuclear energy. Many countries are looking afresh at building more nuclear power stations to deal with the twin problems of global warming and the need for more generating capacity. Many in the nuclear community are also anticipating a significant growth of new nuclear generation in the coming decades. If there is a nuclear renaissance, will the expansion of nuclear power be compatible with global non-proliferation and security? or will it add to the environmental burden from the large inventory of spent nuclear fuel already produced in existing nuclear power reactors? We learn from past peaceful nuclear activities that significant concerns associated with nuclear proliferation and spent-fuel management have resulted in a decrease in public acceptance for nuclear power in many countries. The terrorist attack in the United States (US) on September 11, 2001 also raised concern for security and worry that nuclear materials may fall into the wrong hands. As we increase the use of nuclear power, we must simultaneously reduce the proliferation, security and environmental risks in managing spent-fuel below where they are today.

CONSIDERATIONS REGARDING ROK SPENT NUCLEAR FUEL MANAGEMENT OPTIONS

  • Braun, Chaim;Forrest, Robert
    • Nuclear Engineering and Technology
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    • v.45 no.4
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    • pp.427-438
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    • 2013
  • In this paper we discuss spent fuel management options in the Republic of Korea (ROK) from two interrelated perspectives: Centralized dry cask storage and spent fuel pyroprocessing and burning in sodium fast reactors (SFRs). We argue that the ROK will run out of space for at-reactors spent fuel storage by about the year 2030 and will thus need to transition centralized dry cask storage. Pyroprocessing plant capacity, even if approved and successfully licensed and constructed by that time, will not suffice to handle all the spent fuel discharged annually. Hence centralized dry cask storage will be required even if the pyroprocessing option is successfully developed by 2030. Pyroprocessing is but an enabling technology on the path leading to fissile material recycling and burning in future SFRs. In this regard we discuss two SFR options under development in the U.S.: the Super Prism and the Travelling Wave Reactor (TWR). We note that the U.S. is further along in reactor development than the ROK. The ROK though has acquired more experience, recently in investigating fuel recycling options for SFRs. We thus call for two complementary joint R&D project to be conducted by U.S. and ROK scientists. One leading to the development of a demonstration centralized away-fromreactors spent fuel storage facility. The other involve further R&D on a combined SFR-fuel cycle complex based on the reactor and fuel cycle options discussed in the paper.

CURRENT STATUS OF INTEGRITY ASSESSMENT BY SIPPING SYSTEM OF SPENT FUEL BUNDLES IRRADIATED IN CANDU REACTOR

  • Park, Jong-Youl;Shim, Moon-Soo;Lee, Jong-Hyeon
    • Nuclear Engineering and Technology
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    • v.46 no.6
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    • pp.875-882
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    • 2014
  • In terms of safety and the efficient management of spent fuel storage, detecting failed fuel is one of the most important tasks in a CANada Deuterium Uranium (CANDU) reactor operation. It has been successfully demonstrated that in a CANDU reactor, on-power failed fuel detection and location systems, along with alarm area gamma monitors, can detect and locate defective and suspect fuel bundles before discharging them from the reactor to the spent fuel storage bay. In the reception bay, however, only visual inspection has been used to identify suspect bundles. Gaseous fission product and delayed neutron monitoring systems cannot precisely distinguish failed fuel elements from each fuel bundle. This study reports the use of a sipping system in a CANDU reactor for the integrity assessment of spent fuel bundles. The integrity assessment of spent fuel bundles using this sipping system has shown promise as a nondestructive test for detecting a defective fuel bundle in a CANDU reactor.

DEVELOPMENT OF HOT CELL FACILITIES FOR DEMONSTRATION OF ACP

  • You, Gil-Sung;Choung, Won-Myung;Ku, Jeong-Hoe;Cho, Il-Je;Kook, Dong-Hak;Park, Seong-Won
    • Proceedings of the Korean Radioactive Waste Society Conference
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    • pp.191-204
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    • 2004
  • The research and development of effective management technologies of the spent fuels discharged from power reactors are an important and essential task of KAERI. In resent several years KAERI has focused on a project named "development and demonstration of the Advanced spent fuel Conditioning Process (ACP) in a laboratory scale." The Facility for ACP demonstration consists of two Hot Cells and auxiliary facilities. It is now in the final design stage and will be constructed in 2004. After construction of the facility the ACP equipments will be installed in Hot Cells. The ACP will be demonstrated by some simulated spent fuels first and then by spent fuels.

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The Public Sphere and the Conflict-Structure in Spent Nuclear Fuel Management (사용후핵 연료 관리 이슈 공론장과 그 갈등구조에 관한 소고)

  • Choi, Seong-Kyung
    • Journal of Nuclear Fuel Cycle and Waste Technology(JNFCWT)
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    • v.7 no.1
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    • pp.49-62
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    • 2009
  • Social Acceptance is important to decide policy of spent nuclear fuel management. The idea of a public sphere as a receptacle of dynamic process is the core in this discussion. The purpose of this study is to examine the concept, participants, the conflict-structure and agreeable conditions of a public sphere. A public sphere means in this paper, mechanism and systems that various stakeholders' and public's participation with spontaneous will can affect decision-making process. For good designing and implementing a public sphere, it is necessary to analysis and cope with political, foreign and security, economic, sociocultural environments, the law and systems around spent nuclear fuel management.

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PLUTONIUM MANAGEMENT OPTIONS: LIABILITY OR RESOURCE

  • Bairiot, Hubert
    • Nuclear Engineering and Technology
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    • v.40 no.1
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    • pp.9-20
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    • 2008
  • Since plutonium accounts for 40-50% of the power produced by uranium fuels, spent fuel contains only residual plutonium. Management of this plutonium is one of the aspects influencing the choice of a fuel cycle back-end option: reprocessing, direct disposal or wait-and-see. Different grades and qualities of plutonium exist depending from their specific generation conditions; all are valuable fissile material. Safeguard authorities watch the inventories of civil plutonium, but access to those data is restricted. Independent evaluations have led to an estimated current inventory of 220t plutonium in total (spent fuel, separated civil plutonium and military plutonium). If used as MOX fuel, it would be sufficient to feed all the PWRs and BWRs worldwide during 7 years or to deploy a FBR park corresponding to 150% of today' s installed nuclear capacity worldwide, which could then be exploited for centuries with the current stockpile of depleted and spent uranium. The energy potential of plutonium deteriorates with storage time of spent fuel and of separated plutonium, due to the decay of $^{241}Pu$, the best fissile isotope, into americium, a neutron absorber. The loss of fissile value of plutonium is more pronounced for usage in LWRs than in FBR. However, keeping the current plutonium inventory for an expected future deployment of FBRs is counterproductive. Recycling plutonium reduce the required volume for final disposal in an underground repository and the cost of final disposal. However, the benefits of utilizing an energy resource and of reducing final disposal liabilities are not the only aspects that determine the choice of a back-end policy.

SFR DEPLOYMENT STRATEGY FOR THE RE-USE OF SPENT FUEL IN KOREA

  • Kim, Young-In;Hong, Ser-Ghi;Hahn, Do-Hee
    • Nuclear Engineering and Technology
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    • v.40 no.6
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    • pp.517-526
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    • 2008
  • The widespread concern regarding the management of spent fuel that mainly contributes to nuclear waste has led to the development of the sodium-cooled fast reactor (SFR) as one of the most promising future types of reactors at both national and international levels. Various reactor deployment scenarios with SFR introductions with different conversion ratios in the existing PWR-dominant nuclear fleet have been assessed to optimize the SFR deployment strategy to replace PWRs with the view toward a reduction in the level of spent fuel as well as efficient uranium utilization through its reuse in a closed fuel cycle. An efficient reactor deployment strategy with the SFR introduction starting in 2040 has been drawn based on an SFR deployment strategy in which burners are deployed prior to breakeven reactors to reduce the amount of PWR spent fuel substantially at the early deployment stage. The PWR spent fuel disposal is reduced in this way by 98% and the cumulative uranium demand for PWRs to 2100 is projected to be 445 ktU, implying a uranium savings of 115 ktU. The SFR mix ratio in the nuclear fleet near the year 2100 is estimated to be approximately 35-40%. PWRs will remain as a main power reactor type until 2100 and SFRs will support waste minimization and fuel utilization.

Innovative technologies for spent fuel safe management at Ignalina channel-type reactors

  • Babilas, Egidijus;Dokucajev, Pavel;Janulevicius, Darius;Markelov, Aleksej;Pabarcius, Raimondas;Rimkevicius, Sigitas;Uspuras, Eugenijus;Vaisnoras, Mindaugas
    • Nuclear Engineering and Technology
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    • v.50 no.3
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    • pp.504-511
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    • 2018
  • In Lithuania, all spent nuclear fuel (SNF) resulted from the operation of the Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant (INPP), which had two Russian Acronym for "Channelized Large Power Reactor"-type reactors. After the final shutdown, the total amount of SNF at the INPP was approximately 22,000 fuel assemblies. All these assemblies will be stored for about 50 years and disposed of after that. The decision to shut down and decommission both reactors in Lithuania before termination of design period raises a significant challenge for the treatment of accumulated SNF. Therefore, various techniques and technologies for SNF management were developed and justified for that specific case, and a set of special equipment was installed at the INPP, the effectiveness of which was demonstrated during its operation. This article presents unique techniques related to the management of SNF adopted and commissioned at the INPP after its operation shutdown, namely fuel rod cladding leak tightness control system and special equipment for collection of possible spillage during handling of SNF assembly in the hot cell. The operational experience and measurement results of fuel rod cladding leak tightness control system are presented.

Conceptual design of neutron measurement system for input accountancy in pyroprocessing

  • Lee, Chaehun;Seo, Hee;Menlove, Spencer H.;Menlove, Howard O.
    • Nuclear Engineering and Technology
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    • v.52 no.5
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    • pp.1022-1028
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    • 2020
  • One of the possible options for spent-fuel management in Korea is pyroprocessing, which is a process for electrochemical recycling of spent nuclear fuel. Nuclear material accountancy is considered to be a safeguards measure of fundamental importance, for the purposes of which, the amount of nuclear material in the input and output materials should be measured as accurately as possible by means of chemical analysis and/or non-destructive assay. In the present study, a neutron measurement system based on the fast-neutron energy multiplication (FNEM) and passive neutron albedo reactivity (PNAR) techniques was designed for nuclear material accountancy of a spent-fuel assembly (i.e., the input accountancy of a pyroprocessing facility). Various parameters including inter-detector distance, source-to-detector distance, neutron-reflector material, the structure of a cadmium sleeve around the close detectors, and an air cavity in the moderator were investigated by MCNP6 Monte Carlo simulations in order to maximize its performance. Then, the detector responses with the optimized geometry were estimated for the fresh-fuel assemblies with different 235U enrichments and a spent-fuel assembly. It was found that the measurement technique investigated here has the potential to measure changes in neutron multiplication and, in turn, amount of fissile material.