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Journal Articles

Modelling concrete degradation by coupled non-linear processes

Oda, Chie; Kawama, Daisuke*; Shimizu, Hiroyuki*; Benbow, S. J.*; Hirano, Fumio; Takayama, Yusuke; Takase, Hiroyasu*; Mihara, Morihiro; Honda, Akira

Journal of Advanced Concrete Technology, 19(10), p.1075 - 1087, 2021/10

Concrete in a transuranic (TRU) waste repository is considered a suitable material to ensure safety, provide structural integrity and retard radionuclide migration after the waste containers fail. In the current study, coupling between chemical, mass-transport and mechanical, so-called non-linear processes that control concrete degradation and crack development were investigated by coupled numerical models. Application of such coupled numerical models allows identification of the dominant non-linear processes that will control long-term concrete degradation and crack development in a TRU waste repository.

Journal Articles

Using natural systems evidence to test models of transformation of montmorillonite

Savage, D.*; Wilson, J.*; Benbow, S.*; Sasamoto, Hiroshi; Oda, Chie; Walker, C.*; Kawama, Daisuke*; Tachi, Yukio

Applied Clay Science, 195, p.105741_1 - 105741_11, 2020/09

 Times Cited Count:1 Percentile:0.02(Chemistry, Physical)

Safety functions for the clay buffer in a repository for high-level radioactive waste (HLW) are fulfilled if the presence of montmorillonite with high swelling capacity and low permeability is maintained in the long-term. The transformation of montmorillonite to the non-swelling mineral likely illite is addressed in most safety assessments by using simple semi-empirical kinetic models, but this approach contrasts with more complex reactive-transport simulations. In the present study, reactive-transport simulations are compared with simple semi-empirical kinetic models. Results suggest that reactive-transport simulations err on the side of conservatism, but may produce unrealistic estimates of illitization. This comparison demonstrates that reactive-transport models may be carefully applied to simulate the long-term evolution of near field environment for HLW disposal.

Journal Articles

A Coupled modeling simulator for near-field processes in cement engineered barrier systems for radioactive waste disposal

Benbow, S. J.*; Kawama, Daisuke*; Takase, Hiroyasu*; Shimizu, Hiroyuki*; Oda, Chie; Hirano, Fumio; Takayama, Yusuke; Mihara, Morihiro; Honda, Akira

Crystals (Internet), 10(9), p.767_1 - 767_33, 2020/09

 Times Cited Count:1 Percentile:37.3(Crystallography)

Details are presented of the development of a coupled modeling simulator for assessing the evolution in the near-field of a geological repository for radioactive waste disposal where concrete is used as a backfill. The simulator uses OpenMI, a standard for exchanging data between simulation software programs at run-time, to form a coupled chemical-mechanical-hydrogeological model of the system. The approach combines a tunnel scale stress analysis finite element model, a discrete element model for accurately modeling the patterns of emerging cracks in the concrete, and a finite element and finite volume model of the chemical processes and alteration in the porous matrix and cracks in the concrete, to produce a fully coupled model of the system. Combining existing detailed simulation software in this way with OpenMI has the benefit of not relying on simplifications that might be necessary to combine all of the modeled processes in a single piece of software.

Journal Articles

Natural systems evidence for the effects of temperature and the activity of aqueous silica upon montmorillonite stability in clay barriers for the disposal of radioactive wastes

Savage, D.*; Wilson, J.*; Benbow, S.*; Sasamoto, Hiroshi; Oda, Chie; Walker, C.*; Kawama, Daisuke*; Tachi, Yukio

Applied Clay Science, 179, p.105146_1 - 105146_10, 2019/10

 Times Cited Count:5 Percentile:57.36(Chemistry, Physical)

Natural systems evidence for the effects of temperature and the activity of aqueous silica upon montmorillonite stability was evaluated. Thermodynamic modeling using three different TDBs shows that stability fields for montmorillonite exist from 0 to 140$$^{circ}$$C, but at low values of silica activity, a stability field for illite replaces that for montmorillonite. Pore fluid chemical and mineralogical data for sediments from ODP sites from offshore Japan show a trend from montmorillonite + amorphous silica stability at temperatures up to 60$$^{circ}$$C to that for illite + quartz at higher temperatures. However, even over very long timescales ($$gg$$ 1 Ma), smectite does not transform to illite under thermodynamically-favourable conditions at temperatures less than 80$$^{circ}$$C.

Oral presentation

Using natural systems data to test models of transformation of montmorillonite

Savage, D.*; Wilson, J.*; Benbow, S.*; Sasamoto, Hiroshi; Oda, Chie; Walker, C.*; Kawama, Daisuke*; Tachi, Yukio

no journal, , 

Safety functions for the clay buffer in a repository for HLW are fulfilled if the presence of montmorillonite is maintained in the long-term. Its transformation to non-swelling minerals (e.g. illite) is addressed in most safety assessments by using semi-empirical kinetic models. However, this approach contrasts with all other near-field geochemical modelling activities that employ complex reaction-transport simulations. Here we investigate the consistency of these two approaches by modelling the montmorillonite to illite transformation in the marine sediment profile penetrated by the Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Site 1174. Illitisation of smectite at Site 1174 using the semi-empirical approach has been modeled by previous studies, and shown to provide a reasonable match to the gradual change of illite content with depth. In comparison, the initial results of reaction-transport simulations showed rapid (conservative) conversion of montmorillonite to illite. The cause of this rapid conversion appears to be the transformation of amorphous silica to quartz over a similar timescale. Subsequent simulations have focused on alternative mechanisms for mineral growth that may explain the discrepancies between the semi-empirical and reaction-transport approaches.

Oral presentation

Evolution of radionuclide transport and retardation processes in uplifting crystalline rocks

Metcalfe, R.*; Kawama, Daisuke*; Benbow, S. J.*; Tachi, Yukio

no journal, , 

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