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Title: Integrating Management of Spent Nuclear Fuel from Generation to Disposal

Abstract

The current management system in the United States for commercial spent nuclear fuel does not emphasize integration among storage, transportation, and disposal. Unless a path can be implemented that addresses the long-term needs for integration, the United States could end up leaving substantial quantities of stranded commercial spent nuclear fuel stored at decommissioned reactor sites in an increasingly wide variety of containers. This lack of integration does not cause safety issues, but may delay transporting the spent fuel and complicate options for permanent disposal. The large containers now in use for dry storage remain at high temperatures for decades, thereby delaying transportation from decommissioned reactors. The large containers also have no easy path to disposal unless (1) disposal is further delayed (up to 150 years or more for some mined repository concepts); (2) the contents are repackaged into smaller, cooler packages; or (3) the high temperatures are used as de facto site-selection and design criteria for a repository. Implementing consolidated interim storage could address many issues that exist because of this lack of integration. A consolidated interim storage facility that includes appropriate capabilities can allow existing disparate parts to integrate as a system. Previous agencies and commissions have noted thismore » theme before as a way to provide flexibility in the waste management system. This report uses the rationale for such an approach as a framework to discuss the complexities of reconfiguring the waste management system to include consolidated storage. However, concerns that increased storage capacity will reduce the national urgency for a repository are unavoidable, and continued effort will be necessary in public dialogues on the societal aspects of moving commercial spent nuclear fuel into consolidated interim storage. A single optimal solution for integrating current storage and planned transportation with disposal is unlikely. Rather, efforts to integrate various phases of spent fuel management should begin promptly and continue throughout the remaining life of the current fuel cycle. These efforts will need to adapt continuously to evolving circumstances.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [1]
  1. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States). Nuclear Energy and Fuel Cycle Programs Center
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
OSTI Identifier:
1504841
Report Number(s):
SAND-2015-5503
594786
DOE Contract Number:  
AC04-94AL85000
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English

Citation Formats

Rechard, Robert P., Price, Laura L., and Kalinina, Elena Arkadievna. Integrating Management of Spent Nuclear Fuel from Generation to Disposal. United States: N. p., 2015. Web. doi:10.2172/1504841.
Rechard, Robert P., Price, Laura L., & Kalinina, Elena Arkadievna. Integrating Management of Spent Nuclear Fuel from Generation to Disposal. United States. doi:10.2172/1504841.
Rechard, Robert P., Price, Laura L., and Kalinina, Elena Arkadievna. Mon . "Integrating Management of Spent Nuclear Fuel from Generation to Disposal". United States. doi:10.2172/1504841. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1504841.
@article{osti_1504841,
title = {Integrating Management of Spent Nuclear Fuel from Generation to Disposal},
author = {Rechard, Robert P. and Price, Laura L. and Kalinina, Elena Arkadievna},
abstractNote = {The current management system in the United States for commercial spent nuclear fuel does not emphasize integration among storage, transportation, and disposal. Unless a path can be implemented that addresses the long-term needs for integration, the United States could end up leaving substantial quantities of stranded commercial spent nuclear fuel stored at decommissioned reactor sites in an increasingly wide variety of containers. This lack of integration does not cause safety issues, but may delay transporting the spent fuel and complicate options for permanent disposal. The large containers now in use for dry storage remain at high temperatures for decades, thereby delaying transportation from decommissioned reactors. The large containers also have no easy path to disposal unless (1) disposal is further delayed (up to 150 years or more for some mined repository concepts); (2) the contents are repackaged into smaller, cooler packages; or (3) the high temperatures are used as de facto site-selection and design criteria for a repository. Implementing consolidated interim storage could address many issues that exist because of this lack of integration. A consolidated interim storage facility that includes appropriate capabilities can allow existing disparate parts to integrate as a system. Previous agencies and commissions have noted this theme before as a way to provide flexibility in the waste management system. This report uses the rationale for such an approach as a framework to discuss the complexities of reconfiguring the waste management system to include consolidated storage. However, concerns that increased storage capacity will reduce the national urgency for a repository are unavoidable, and continued effort will be necessary in public dialogues on the societal aspects of moving commercial spent nuclear fuel into consolidated interim storage. A single optimal solution for integrating current storage and planned transportation with disposal is unlikely. Rather, efforts to integrate various phases of spent fuel management should begin promptly and continue throughout the remaining life of the current fuel cycle. These efforts will need to adapt continuously to evolving circumstances.},
doi = {10.2172/1504841},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {2015},
month = {6}
}