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Reactive-transport model analyses of bentonite alteration behavior at alkaline condition generated by cement-water interaction in a TRU wastes repository

Oda, Chie; Honda, Akira; Takase, Hiroyasu*; Ozone, Kenji*; Sasaki, Ryoichi*; Yamaguchi, Kohei*; Sato, Tsutomu*

Proposed TRU repository designs for geological disposal envisage the use of a bentonite buffer to limit the migration of radionuclides by impeding groundwater flow. Under highly alkaline conditions due to cementitious materials could cause a complex series of coupled changes in the porewater chemistry, mineralogy and, ultimately, the mass transport properties of the bentonite buffer. To elucidate the consequences of these coupled changes, reactive-transport model analyses have been conducted for eight bentonite alteration test cases using different combinations of secondary minerals that could form in the bentonite buffer. It was found that after 100,000 years the amount of dissolved bentonite was at a maximum when metastable secondary minerals precipitated. It was also found that the diffusion and hydraulic coefficients after 100,000 years in all test cases were on the same order of magnitude as the initial values.

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