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Finland in Front: The World’s Likely First Spent Fuel Repository Moves Toward Licensing
The year 2024 is shaping up to be a historic one for Posiva, the waste management organization owned by Finland’s two nuclear power plant utilities, Fortum and Teollisuuden Voima. The company is looking to receive regulatory approval of its operating license for the Onkalo deep geological repository for high-level radioactive waste by the end of the year.
Athena A. Sagadevan, Sunil S. Chirayath
Nuclear Technology | Volume 208 | Number 3 | March 2022 | Pages 428-436
Technical Paper | doi.org/10.1080/00295450.2021.1922259
Articles are hosted by Taylor and Francis Online.
Until a long-term solution is finalized, interim storage of sufficiently cooled spent nuclear fuel (SNF) assemblies in dry casks is the predominant practice. Since these dry casks can contain approximately 160 kg of reactor-grade plutonium, they require safeguards monitoring. Results of a simulation study conducted on the design development and analysis of a remote monitoring system (RMS) are presented. The goal of the study was to determine the suitability of this RMS to meet the SNF monitoring objectives. MCNP simulations of a dry cask with all its contents and a set of simulations with one or two removed SNF assemblies were performed to test the detection capabilities of the RMS. The removed assemblies were substituted with dummy assemblies to simulate concealment. The studies showed that the RMS design is suitable to monitor and detect the removal of even a single SNF assembly from the cask.