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Packing Nuclear Fuel


Development of Scientific Foundations of the Technology of the Metal Matrix Packing of Leaky Unreprocessible Spent Nuclear Fuel of Different Purpose Reactors for a Long-term Environmentally Safe Storage.

Tech Area / Field

  • ENV-RWT/Radioactive Waste Treatment/Environment

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
All-Russian Scientific Research Institute of Non-Organic Materials named after A. Bochvar, Russia, Moscow


  • GNB (Doughtier Company of GNS), Germany, Essen\nGesellschaft für Nuklear-Service mbH (GNC), Germany, Essen

Project summary

Goal of Project

Development of scientific foundations for the technology of leaky spent fuel (which is not subject for reprocessing) of different purpose reactors into canisters for a long-term environmentally safe dry storage. The canisters are filled with a corrosion resistant metal (an additional barrier) that prevents the release of radionudide from fuel to the environment and under conditions of storage and short-term off normal events is inert to the atmospheric air, steam, water, stainless canister, a fuel cladding material and UO2.

Anticipated Results

It is anticipated that the work implementation will make available the results of physic-chemical calculations and experiments studying the interaction of nuclear fuel and its fission products (cesium, iodine and oth.) with a metal matrix as well as getters will be developed to bind those products, the canister structural material will be chosen, a SFA packing rig will be produced and experimental data on filling SFA mock-ups will be generated.

The final result of the work will be the development of scientific foundations for the technology of packing leaky spent fuel (which is not subject for reprocessing) of different purpose reactors into a metal matrix to be long-term safety stored (disposal of unreprocessible fuel).

Advantages of project

The storage of leaky SFA in a corrosion resistant metal matrix (lead or its alloys) will make it possible:

- to eliminate diffusion of radionudides to the wall of a confining canister and their release to the environment as a result of corrosion processes;

- to provide the confinement of leaky fuel rods;

- to fix fuel rods or assemblies against mechanical displacements or fuel spilling to ensure the nuclear safety;

- to lower the storage temperature of fuel rods through the use of a high heat conductivity matrix material to avoid the damage of fuel claddings, spacer grids and canister components.

The operation of SFA packing will make it possible to avoid the radionudide release outside the canister both during packing and a long-term storage of packed fuel thus ensuring the environmentally dean and safe long-term storage and disposal of nuclear fuel.

Foreign collaborators (invitation).

Participants of the project believe this project may be interesting and we are ready for collaboration with any organization which is interested in receiving tha results of this investigation. At the early stages, the following items are subjects for discussion, revising (if needed) and approval by collaborators:

definition of the problem, selection of structural materials for comprehensive investigation, additional equipment design and fabrication or order, the work plan.

The German company GNS responsible for all aspects of spent fuel and spent wastes treatment in Germany (with GNB) has agreed to carry not the functions of COLLABORATORS and supervisors for this project in the framework of 1 STC. (Letter from Dr. K. Janberg, Director, GNS, Gesellschaft fur Nudear-Servise mbH, 29.03.96, Essen).


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