Spent-Fuel Test - Climax: An evaluation of the technical feasibility of geologic storage of spent nuclear fuel in granite: Executive summary of final results Page: 3 of 21
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An Evaluation of the
Technical Feasibility of
Geologic Storage of Spent
Nuclear Fuel in Granite
Executive Summary of Final Results
This summary volume outlines results that are covered in more detail in the final
report of the Spent-Fuel Test-Climax project. The project was conducted between 1978
and 1983 in the granitic Climax stock at the Nevada Test Site. Results indicate that spent-
fuel can be safely stored for periods of years in this host medium and that nuclear waste
so emplaced can be safely retrieved. We also evaluated the effects of heat and radiation
(alone and in combination) on emplacement canisters and the surrounding rock mass.
Storage of the spent-fuel affected the surrounding rock mass in measurable ways, but did
not threaten the stability or safety of the facility at any time.
The National Waste Terminal Storage
(NWTS) Program was established in 1976 by the
predecessor of the U.S. Department of Energy
(DOE) to evaluate the feasibility of retrievable
deep geologic storage of commercial nuclear reac-
tor wastes. In September 1983 the NWTS became
the Civilian Radioactive Waste Management pro-
gram. This large, multidisciplinary program plans
to create an operational repository in the 1990s.
Although it was clear that a large-scale field
test would be ideal for demonstrating essential
technologies and revealing unexpected effects of
waste emplacement, it was also evident that there
would be few opportunities for such testing early
in the program. Therefore, the Spent-Fuel Test-
Climax (SFT-C) was undertaken to demonstrate
the feasibility of spent-ful handling and to ad-
dress technical concerns related to granitic rocks.
The final report (which will be published as
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Liver-
more, CA, Report UCRL-53702, 1987) covers all
aspects of the design, development, conduct, and
results of the SFT-C. This summary volume is
intended to be sufficiently detailed to present key
aspects of site characterization, test facility and
equipment design, and test results. These topics
vary in complexity, and the depth of discussion
Each chapter of this volume is a summary of
the corresponding chapter in UCRL-53702. Please
refer t( the full report for discussions of each sub-
ject and for specific references. The Bibliography
at the end of this volume lists all reports pub-
lished concerning the SFT-C.
The SFT-C was conducted under the tech-
nical direction of the Lawrence Livermore Na-
tional Laboratory (LLNL) for the DOE. As part of
the Nevada Nuclear Waste Storage Investigations,
it was managed by the Nevada Operations Office
of the DOE.
The SFT--C facility (shown in Fig. 1) was lo-
cated 420 m below surface in the Climax stock
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Patrick, W.C. Spent-Fuel Test - Climax: An evaluation of the technical feasibility of geologic storage of spent nuclear fuel in granite: Executive summary of final results, report, September 2, 1986; California. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc690048/m1/3/: accessed February 17, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.