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Initial Standardized Canister System Evaluation

Josh Jarrell
Robby Joseph
Rob Howard
Richard Hale
Gordon Petersen
Blake Wilkerson
Jeff Fortner
Elena Kalinina
Publication Date

Attachment Size
prelimstadassessm22015-09rev1final_3.pdf (2 MB) 2 MB

This report documents an initial evaluation of integrating standardized canisters into the nuclear waste management system, which is an intermediate step in the quantitative assessment of standardization. This is a technical report that does not take into account the contractual limitations under the Standard Contract (10 CFR Part 961) that DOE has in place with nuclear utilities. Under the Standard Contract, DOE is obligated to accept only bare UNF. Acceptance of canistered UNF would require a mutual agreement to modify the contract. This report reflects research and development efforts to explore technical concepts which could support future decision making by DOE. No inferences should be drawn from this report regarding future actions by DOE.

The evaluation focuses on scenarios in which standardized canisters designed for storage, transportation, and disposal are loaded at reactors before being stored onsite or shipped to an interim storage facility (ISF) or repository. Other strategies, such as shipment of bare fuel to an ISF and using standardized canisters for storage and subsequent transportation and disposal from that point forward, will be evaluated in future studies. This report highlights preliminary observations, identifies needed information moving forward, and guides future evaluation work. No observations in this report should be considered final, as additional system model logic verification, data verification, and collection are ongoing and will impact these observations.

The larger standardization assessment is a multi-year undertaking with a goal to fully understand the impacts of integrating standardized canister systems into the waste management system. At its conclusion, the standardization assessment will quantify the relative impacts (cost, operational, etc.) on the nuclear waste management system if standardization strategies are selected before disposal requirements are known. These impacts will be quantified whether the standardization strategies are determined to be compatible or incompatible with the final repository concept. Standardization options are of significant interest in the context of the Administration’s Strategy for the Management and Disposal of Used Nuclear Fuel and High-Level Radioactive Waste, which includes a consent-based siting process. A consent-based siting process keeps all generic repository concepts as potential options. Because the repository site and design is not yet determined, it is important to quantify and understand how changing canister-related options may impact the waste management system. This initial evaluation report details how initial (i.e., near-term) standardization strategies (including no standardization) might be impacted by the ultimate determination of waste package (WP) size.