Near-surface Disposal and Interim Storage

Inventory development, safety-integrated design, and site assessment for IRAQ near-surface facility for short-lived low level waste and short-lived intermediate level waste (2014-2018)

MCM led inventory development, and provided Key Expert for the site characterisation, conceptual design, detailed design for an engineered radioactive waste disposal facility for the Iraqi Ministry of Science and Technology (MoST), with the support of the European Commission (EC).

Together with NUKEM Technologies, BGE TEC (formally DBE TECH) and JAVYS, who led the detailed design, safety assessment aspects and developed additional licensing documentation, MCM delivered a credible design for a near-surface disposal facility proposed for a site at Al-Tuwaitha. The conceptual design required capacity for in excess of 5,000 m3 of packaged Short-Lived Low Level Waste and Short-Lived Intermediate Level Waste (SL-LLW/ILW) originating from nuclear site decommissioning and radioactive waste treatment operations across Iraq.

Following a preliminary site assessment, assessing regional features such as geology, hydrogeology, geochemistry and seismicity and the national context within which radioactive waste disposal was planned, a Multi-Attribute Analysis optioneering process was carried out leading to the conceptual design of an above-ground, modular facility.

Work is currently continuing to finalise the detailed facility design and final safety assessment in readiness for acceptance by the Iraqi MoST, with all work due to be completed in early 2019.

Concepts for near-surface and intermediate-depth disposal of radioactive wastes (2017)

MCM, and their partners AMEC Foster Wheeler, were contracted by RWM to investigate near-surface (NSD)  and  intermediate-depth  disposal  (IDD) concepts as potential alternatives to geological disposal where certain categories of HAW are concerned.

Numerous generic NSD & IDD disposal concepts were investigated along with analysis of the existing disposal facilities in France, the UK, Finland, Sweden and Japan. The strengths and weaknesses of NSD & IDD where HAW disposal is concerned were used to assess the feasibility of such a programme along with the identification of information gaps which must be closed in order to move along with a NSD/IDD HAW disposal implementation plan.

ILW Container Integrity Limits and Targets (2013)

Dr Tara Beattie (MCM) worked with Wood (formerly AMEC Foster Wheeler) to support RWM with their GDF Disposal System Specification, providing a review of the underpinning and justification for integrity related requirements on ILW waste packages during interim storage and the different phases of geological disposal. This involved documenting the origins and supporting evidence for the ILW container integrity requirements and re-evaluating their relevance, quantification and formulation along with identifying potential options for alternative solutions.

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