Thermal Management and Analysis for a Potential Yucca Mountain Repository

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In the current Yucca Mountain repository design concept, heat from the emplaced waste (mostly from spent nuclear fuel) would keep the temperature of the rock around the waste packages higher than the boiling point of water for hundreds to thousands of years after the repository is closed. The design concept allows below-boiling portions of the pillars between drifts to serve as pathways for the drainage of thermally mobilized water and percolating groundwater by limiting the distance that boiling temperatures extend into the surrounding rock. This design concept takes advantage of host rock dry out, which would create a dry environment ... continued below

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7 pages

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van Luik, A. November 23, 2004.

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Description

In the current Yucca Mountain repository design concept, heat from the emplaced waste (mostly from spent nuclear fuel) would keep the temperature of the rock around the waste packages higher than the boiling point of water for hundreds to thousands of years after the repository is closed. The design concept allows below-boiling portions of the pillars between drifts to serve as pathways for the drainage of thermally mobilized water and percolating groundwater by limiting the distance that boiling temperatures extend into the surrounding rock. This design concept takes advantage of host rock dry out, which would create a dry environment within the emplacement drifts and reduce the amount of water that might otherwise be available to enter the drifts and contact the waste packages during this thermal pulse. Table 1 provides an overview of design constraints related to thermal management after repository closure. The Yucca Mountain repository design concept also provides flexibility to allow for operation over a range of lower thermal operating conditions. The thermal conditions within the emplacement drifts can be varied, along with the relative humidity, by modifying operational parameters such as the thermal output of the waste packages, the spacing of the waste packages in the emplacement drifts, and the duration and rate of active and passive ventilation. A lower range has been examined to quantify lower-temperature thermal conditions (temperatures and associated humidity conditions) in the emplacement drifts and to quantify impacts to the required emplacement area and excavated drift length. This information has been used to evaluate the potential long-term performance of a lower-temperature repository and to estimate the increase in costs associated with operating a lower-temperature repository. This presentation provides an overview of the thermal management evaluations that have been conducted to investigate a range of repository thermal conditions and includes a summary of the technical basis that supports these evaluations. The majority of the material presented here is summarized from the Yucca Mountain Science and Engineering Report [l]. A companion paper in this publication entitled ''Characterizing the Evolution of the In-Drift Environment in a Proposed Yucca Mountain Repository'' schematically illustrates the processes being controlled through the management of thermal loading in its Figure 3.

Physical Description

7 pages

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INIS; OSTI as DE00840130

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  • Other Information: PBD: 23 Nov 2004

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  • Report No.: NONE
  • Grant Number: NONE
  • DOI: 10.2172/840130 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 840130
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc780918

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Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

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  • November 23, 2004

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Dec. 3, 2015, 9:30 a.m.

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  • Feb. 10, 2016, 6:41 p.m.

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van Luik, A. Thermal Management and Analysis for a Potential Yucca Mountain Repository, report, November 23, 2004; Las Vegas, Nevada. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc780918/: accessed November 18, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.