What we know to do
We know how to characterize the nuclear waste, following the steps listed below:1. Representative sampling of waste categories;
2. Sample preparation in order to perform global measurements in view of chemical procedures application for radiochemical segregation of isotopes of interest;
3. Performing global gamma measurements and determining specific activities of gamma emitters;
4. Measuring the specific alpha/beta global activity;
5. Chemical procedures application for radiochemical segregation;
6. Measuring the specific activity of alpha emitters by alpha-spectrometry;
7. Measuring specific activities of H-3, C-14, Ni-63, Sr-90, Y-90;
8. Application of exclusion procedures from the category of radioactive waste;
9. Setting of correlation and scale factors.
Each of the steps listed, includes developing specific procedures, containing in detail, issues related to sampling, samples preservation, their decomposition, the chemical treatment in order to separate radiochemical each isotope of interest, their measurement. Also, procedures for using equipments, systems, devices and measuring instruments are developed, as well as procedures for implementation of quality systems. All these procedures are reviewed whenever circumstances require (i.e. purchase of new devices/instruments/equipment/supplies, the need of a new type of waste characterization etc.).
We know how to perform nuclear waste pre-processing (collecting and sorting) and processing operation
In all handling and processing operations of nuclear waste, a series of measures are required, in order to:- Ensure the radioprotection of the personnel involved in these actions;
- Reduce the contaminant dispersion in the work area and in the outdoor environment;
- Fix the contaminant in order to avoid migration during the intermediate storage;
- Process so that the dispersion during the final disposal to be minimized.
An important class of the radioactive waste produced by a nuclear power plant is represented by organic liquids. These wastes include spent oils from the pumps of the primary cooling system and the moderator system (in case of CANDU power plants), solvents from maintenance and decontamination activities, spent scintillator liquids etc. The storage and/or transport of these wastes show additional risks due to their high flammability. Usually, storages are authorized on Cernavoda NPP site for solid wastes, leading to a mandatory solidification of organic liquid waste.
- Is not flammable but can be incinerated, which further reduces the volume of waste;
- The increasing of volume is about 1,5 times;
- Effectively retains H-3, an important contaminant in the case of CANDU type power plants.
Small scale solidification
|Large scale solidification|