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[en] The French fleet of reactors is made up of 58 pressurized water reactors (PWR). Before being loaded in the core of a reactor, the nuclear fuel comes from a long process, beginning in the mine and going through enrichment and the manufacturing of fuel assemblies. After a 4-year long irradiation in reactor, used fuels are unloaded, separated and packaged for final disposal. Separation allows the recovery of plutonium and uranium and their re-use as nuclear fuel in reactors. This article details every stage of nuclear fuel from mining to disposal via reprocessing. A graph shows how in 2013, the recovery of plutonium allowed the fabrication of 100 tonnes of mixed uranium and plutonium oxides fuel (MOX) and the recovery of uranium allowed the fabrication of 70 tonnes of re-enriched fuel (URE). The total amount of nuclear fuel required to feed 58 reactors is 1000 tonnes a year. (A.C.)
[en] In this meeting we will continue the established tradition to inform each other about the most important achievements of both projects and results of activities identified on last meeting which include areas of Proliferation Resistance, Economics, Safety, and Non-electric applications. We are also expecting discussion of new areas of potential cooperation such as Modelling and Simulation, SMRs, Institutional innovations, Advanced fuel cycles including Thorium, advanced materials, and Education and Training.
[en] This article addresses the comparative environmental impacts of possible future implementations of several uranium- and thorium-based fuel cycles at steady-state. After carefully defining an appropriate, meaningful, and consistent reference set of fuel cycles for both thorium- and uranium-based options-along with varied extents of recycle-material flow analyses are conducted to determine the mass throughputs in the constituent steps of the fuel cycles. These mass flows are combined with mass-normalized environmental metrics encompassing safety, waste (both low- and high-level) management, and resource sustainability to provide overall perspectives on the environment, health, and safety performance of these fuel cycles. The results indicate that the extent of recycle is generally a more important predictor of environmental metric performance than whether the fuel cycle uses uranium or thorium, although there are still some differences between uranium and thorium for certain metrics. Different fuel cycles perform better with regards to certain metrics, and there is no “best” fuel cycle with regards to environmental impact; the varying relative performance is discussed.
[en] Experimental reactor physics is an essential element of physics design of a nuclear reactor and plays an important role in the safe design and operation of nuclear reactors. Approximations in modelling the reactor using computer codes and the ‘uncertainty in the nuclear data’ that goes as input into these codes contribute to the uncertainty of the theoretically computed design parameters. Reactor physics experiments provide estimates of the uncertainty in the design by comparing the measured and computed values of these parameters. A thorium fuel cycle based advanced heavy water reactor (AHWR) is being designed in Reactor Physics Design Division, BARC. A zero power critical facility (CF) was commissioned to generate the experimental data for physics design validation of AHWR. A number of experiments were carried out in CF which includes the measurement of differential/integral parameters and various reaction rates. The covariance analysis of these measurement will be carried out to generate the relevant covariance matrices
[en] Conclusion: • GIF Cost Estimating Methodology is available for use by all GIF projects. • Training for users is available at varying levels of detail. • The EMWG continues to monitor Methodology applications. • Small scale activities on additional GEN IV related case studies.
[en] Authors discuss the issues of protection of fast reactors and relevant nuclear fuel cycles from the proliferation of nuclear weapons using knowledge, technology and materials of nuclear energy in military programs. The features of the closed nuclear fuel cycle of fast reactors to maintain the global nonproliferation regime in comparison with the non-closed cycle of thermal reactors are also discussed
[ru]В статье обсуждаются вопросы защищенности быстрых реакторов и соответствующих ядерных топливных циклов от распространения ядерного оружия за счет использования в военных программах знаний, технологий и материалов атомной энергетики. Обсуждаются также особенности замкнутого ядерного топливного цикла быстрых реакторов по поддержанию глобального режима нераспространения
[en] Nuclear Energy Data is the OECD Nuclear Energy Agency's annual compilation of statistics and country reports documenting nuclear power status in the OECD area. Information provided by member country governments includes statistics on installed generating capacity, total electricity produced by all sources and by nuclear power, nuclear energy policies and fuel cycle developments, as well as projected generating capacity and electricity production to 2035, where available. Total electricity generation at nuclear power plants and the share of electricity production from nuclear power plants increased slightly in 2014, by 1.4% and 0.3% respectively, despite Japan's nuclear fleet remaining offline throughout the year. No new reactor was connected to the grid in OECD countries and one, in the United States, was permanently shut down. Governments committed to having nuclear power in the energy mix advanced plans for developing or increasing nuclear generating capacity, with the preparation of new build projects making progress in Finland, Hungary, Turkey and the United Kingdom. Further details on these and other developments are provided in the publication's numerous tables, graphs and country reports. This publication contains 'StatLinks'. For each StatLink, the reader will find a URL which leads to the corresponding spreadsheet. These links work in the same way as an Internet link. (authors)
[en] Nuclear Energy Data is the Nuclear Energy Agency's annual compilation of statistics and country reports documenting nuclear power status in NEA member countries and in the OECD area. Information provided by governments includes statistics on total electricity produced by all sources and by nuclear power, fuel cycle capacities and requirements, and projections to 2035, where available. Country reports summarise energy policies, updates of the status in nuclear energy programmes and fuel cycle developments. In 2017, nuclear power continued to supply significant amounts of low-carbon base-load electricity, in a context of strong competition from low-cost fossil fuels and renewable energy sources. Governments committed to having nuclear power in the energy mix advanced plans for developing or increasing nuclear generating capacity, with the preparation of new build projects making progress in Finland, Hungary, Turkey and the United Kingdom. Further details on these and other developments are provided in the publication's numerous tables, graphs and country reports. This publication contains 'StatLinks'. For each StatLink, the reader will find a URL which leads to the corresponding spreadsheet. These links work in the same way as an Internet link. (authors)
[en] According to the provisions of the 2006 law, the long-term management of long-lived high- and intermediate-level waste (LLHLW and LLILW) has three components: its industrial storage, its disposal in geological repositories and the separation-transmutation of long-lived radioactive elements. In addition, the nuclear industry and the dismantling of decommissioned facilities produce waste of lower activity which requires specific management, in particular because of the large quantities produced. This report evaluates the progress of studies and research on these themes. The purpose of the Cigeo project is to build and operate a geological repository for LLHLW and LLILW radioactive waste. This repository should be created at a depth of 500 m in the 130 m-thick Callovo-Oxfordian (COx) argillite formation in Meuse - Haute-Marne. It has benefited from more than twenty years of studies and research carried out by Andra and the scientific community, notably in the underground laboratory at Bure. The models developed to calculate the sizing of underground structures are convincing because of the care taken with the qualification of the thermo-hydro-mechanical (THM) behaviour of the argillite. Continuous improvement of the physico-chemical modelling of the repository has made it possible to refine quantification of water and gas flows both during the operation of Cigeo and after its closure. Andra must now apply these models to finalise plans for Cigeo. Andra must clarify all the criteria used to validate the configuration and sizing of the structures envisaged. Astrid is a technological demonstrator of a fast-neutron reactor (FNR). It will supply electricity while sustainability recycling plutonium from the reprocessing of spent fuel. In accordance with the 2006 law, for which transmutation aimed at reducing the radiotoxicity of long-lived nuclear waste is a fundamental component, Astrid will evaluate the industrial feasibility of the transmutation of minor actinides. Astrid should also establish the conditions for increased plutonium consumption in order to stop production of nuclear electricity without wasting a large stock of plutonium. All basic nuclear facilities must be cleaned-up and dismantled after they are shut down. This procedure sometimes implies recovery of waste that is stored there. R and D to develop the equipment has been conducted for more than a decade and the actual waste recovery operations will continue for at least two decades. These operations continue under normal conditions. The study carried out by the CEA and the producers provides important information concerning the storage of bitumens. Still to be verified, however, is the possibility of a waste package catching fire and the fire spreading to the entire sector. The Board recommends further experiments on this subject. Finally, it is necessary to re-evaluate alternatives to incineration of these bitumens based on updated data. Very low-level waste (VLLW) represents a considerable volume and Andra expects that its Cires repository, even when extended to 900 000 m3, will be full by 2030; a second repository must then be opened. Andra estimates that about half of VLLW has such low activity that it could be placed in simplified repositories. The Board has already recommended ensuring a consistent policy for the management of low-level waste, whether or not it originates from a nuclear industry. It considers that waste management policy should be based solely on toxicity studies. Isolation and containment times with regard to the biosphere must also be defined, taking account of society's expectations. The issues of a release threshold and low doses clearly underlie these questions. All countries using nuclear energy consider that geological disposal of LLHLW-LLILW is the reference solution. The most advanced European countries are Finland, which has begun construction of its granite repository at a depth of 430 m, and Sweden, where the procedures for authorisation to build a granite repository are expected to come to fruition in 2018. In the United States, the procedure for granting authorisation for Yucca Mountain is restarting. Canada is looking for repository sites in geologically well-adapted areas that also benefit from a societal agreement. Accelerator-Driven Systems (ADS) have been proposed as alternatives to fast reactors for the transmutation of actinides. Research continues internationally, principally in the framework of the European Myrrha project, piloted by the Belgian SCK.CEN and included in the ESFRI road map. Most countries with a nuclear industry have already undertaken dismantling operations (reactors, fuel plants, reprocessing plants (etc.). They show that the technologies are available to perform dismantling while observing all the conventional and nuclear safety standards. The methodologies for estimating the costs have been validated.
[en] The New Areva group, refocused on the nuclear fuel cycle operations (including in particular the Mining, Front End and Back End operations), was created on November 10, 2016 in the framework of the implementation of the Areva SA restructuring plan described in the '2016-2020 road-map' presented to the market by the AREVA SA company on June 15, 2016. This 2016 activity report presents: 1 - The situation and activities of the company and its subsidiaries; 2 - The presentation of the annual financial statements; 3 - The information on share capital; 4 - The Management of the company - Statutory auditors; 5 - Other information (Injunctions and fines, Agreements, Review of regulated agreements..); 6 - The social, societal and environmental information; 7 - Appendices to the annual activity report: the consolidated financial statements at December 31, 2016; the financial statements for the period ended December 31, 2016; the report of the board of directors on the compensation of executive officers to the combined general meeting of June 22, 2017; the Social, environmental and societal responsibility report (CSR); the Independent verifier's report on consolidated social, environmental and societal information presented in the management report; the Report of the Chairman of the Board of Directors on the conditions for preparing and organizing the work of the Board of Directors and on internal control and risk management procedures; the Statutory Auditors' report on the corporate financial statements; the Statutory Auditors' report on the consolidated financial statements; the Statutory Auditors' special report on regulated agreements and commitments; the Report of the statutory auditors on the report of the Chairman of the Board of Directors.