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Dismantling of BR-10 Fast Reactor


Development of Technology of the BR-10 Reactor Dismantling and Radioactive Wastes Processing Before Utilization

Tech Area / Field

  • FIR-DEC/Decommissioning/Fission Reactors

8 Project completed

Registration date

Completion date

Senior Project Manager
Tocheny L V

Leading Institute
FEI (IPPE), Russia, Kaluga reg., Obninsk


  • CEA / DRN / DER / CEN Cadarache, France, Cadarache

Project summary

One the urgent problems of nuclear power are decommissioning of nuclear reactors, in particular those using plutonium fuel. The BR-10 is experimental fast neutron sodium cooled reactor, which has been in operation since 1959. The reactor was used during 17 years for the plutonium fuel testing, and in order to determine fuel element lifetime, they were operated until cladding failures, causing release of fuel and fission products into the primary circuit. About 13 tons of radioactive sodium containing fission products and fissile materials are now in the long term storage tanks and cold traps. According to the decision of the Minister, the reactor should be shut down at the end of 1998.

The scope of the project includes R&D works on preparation of the reactor for the decommissioning, and in particular, development of the following issues:

- concept of BR-10 test reactor decommissioning;
- order of the core unloading;
- technology of primary circuit cleaning from the sodium residues, fission products and fissile materials;
- technology of the plant dismantling;
- classifying and certifying of radioactive wastes;
- the list of the most important studies to be performed before and after dismantling;
- technology of sodium removal from the cold traps and their cleaning from the sodium residues;
- cleaning from cesium and sodium residues of stack-filters used for cesium removal from the primary circuit;
- reprocessing technology, for the sodium radioactive wastes.

This work is to be completed by the issue of request for proposal on the BR-10 reactor decommissioning, and request for proposal on the facility for elimination of sodium radioactive wastes from the BR-10 reactor.

The project provides support for scientific and engineering personnel earlier involved in weapons production (management of uranium-235, measurements of parameters of reactors used for submarines and measurements of some nuclear data for the space application reactors).


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