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Report No.

Alternative repository design concepts for HLW disposal; Challenges and initiatives

Masuda, Sumio*; Kawamura, Hideki*; McKinley, I. G.*; Kitayama, Kazumi*; Umeki, Hiroyuki

Many of the "standard" designs for deep geological radwaste repositories were developed decades ago and have altered little since. Changing boundary conditions - both technical and socio-economic - are driving increasing interest in the consideration of alternatives, particularly for disposal of higher activity and longer-lived wastes. This was particularly the case in Japan, following the decision by NUMO to proceed with site selection based on a volunteering process. The work by NUMO to examine alternatives provides a good illustration of the range of possibilities which are available to allow flexible tailoring of design to fit both the characteristics of volunteer sites and the desires of local communities. On an even larger scale, however, the 21st century can be expected to bring challenges that will affect the future nuclear power generation at both national and global levels. As repository project are planned and implemented over timescales of many decades, such uncertainties should be taken into account to ensure that waste disposal projects initiated now remain appropriate to the future generations who will build, operate and close them.



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