EQ6 Calculations for Chemical Degradation Of N Reactor (U-Metal) Spent Nuclear Fuel Waste Packages

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The Monitored Geologic Repository (MGR) Waste Package Department of the Civilian Radioactive Waste Management System Management & Operating Contractor (CRWMS M&O) performed calculations to provide input for disposal of spent nuclear fuel (SNF) from the N Reactor, a graphite moderated reactor at the Department of Energy's (DOE) Hanford Site (ref. 1). The N Reactor core was fueled with slightly enriched (0.947 wt% and 0.947 to 1.25 wt% {sup 235}U in Mark IV and Mark IA fuels, respectively) U-metal clad in Zircaloy-2 (Ref. 1, Sec. 3). Both types of N Reactor SNF have been considered for disposal at the proposed Yucca ... continued below

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Bernot, P. February 27, 2001.

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The Monitored Geologic Repository (MGR) Waste Package Department of the Civilian Radioactive Waste Management System Management & Operating Contractor (CRWMS M&O) performed calculations to provide input for disposal of spent nuclear fuel (SNF) from the N Reactor, a graphite moderated reactor at the Department of Energy's (DOE) Hanford Site (ref. 1). The N Reactor core was fueled with slightly enriched (0.947 wt% and 0.947 to 1.25 wt% {sup 235}U in Mark IV and Mark IA fuels, respectively) U-metal clad in Zircaloy-2 (Ref. 1, Sec. 3). Both types of N Reactor SNF have been considered for disposal at the proposed Yucca Mountain site. For some WPs, the outer shell and inner shell may breach (Ref. 3) allowing the influx of water. Water in the WP will moderate neutrons, increasing the likelihood of a criticality event within the WP; and the water may, in time, gradually leach the fissile components from the WP, further affecting the neutronics of the system. This study presents calculations of the long-term geochemical behavior of WPs containing two multi-canister overpacks (MCO) with either six baskets of Mark IA or five baskets of Mark IV intact N Reactor SNF rods (Ref. 1, Sec. 4) and two high-level waste (HLW) glass pour canisters (GPCs) arranged according to the codisposal concept (Ref. 4). The specific study objectives were to determine: (1) The extent to which fissile uranium will remain in the WP after corrosion/dissolution of the initial WP configuration (2) The extent to which fissile uranium will be carried out of the degraded WP by infiltrating water (such that internal criticality is no longer possible, but the possibility of external criticality may be enhanced); and (3) The nominal chemical composition for the criticality evaluations of the WP design, and to suggest the range of parametric variations for additional evaluations. The scope of this calculation, the chemical compositions (and subsequent criticality evaluations) of the simulations, is limited to time periods up to 6.35 x 10{sup 5} years. This longer time frame is closer to the one million year time horizon recently recommended by the National Academy of Sciences to the Environmental Protection Agency for performance assessment related to a nuclear repository (Ref. 5). However, it is important to note that after 100,000 years, most of the materials of interest (fissile materials) will have either been removed from the WP, reached a steady state, or been transmuted.

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  • Report No.: CAL-EDC-MD-000010, Rev. 00
  • Grant Number: NA
  • DOI: 10.2172/899943 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 899943
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc882313

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  • February 27, 2001

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Sept. 22, 2016, 2:13 a.m.

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  • Nov. 23, 2016, 6:57 p.m.

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Bernot, P. EQ6 Calculations for Chemical Degradation Of N Reactor (U-Metal) Spent Nuclear Fuel Waste Packages, report, February 27, 2001; Las Vegas, Nevada. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc882313/: accessed June 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.