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Best option for Indian Point nuclear power station decommission and clean up the whole site within a reasonable period, such as 20 years

Indian Point site should be cleaned up as quickly as possible: Column https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/opinion/valley-views/2018/06/17/indian-point-site-should-cleaned-up-quickly-possible-column/699682002/, By Maggie Coulter, Valley Views  June 17, 2018  

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June 18, 2018 Posted by | decommission reactor, USA | Leave a comment

Oyster Creek nuclear power station will take 60 years to be closed down

That N.J. nuclear plant that’s closing this fall? It’s actually going to take 60 years http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2018/06/nuclear_plant_closing_in_september_but_buildings_w.htmlBy Bill Gallo Jr.  bgallo@njadvancemedia.com For NJ.com

June 8, 2018 Posted by | decommission reactor, USA | Leave a comment

Alaska’s only nuclear power station to be dismantled

Nuclear power plant at Fort Greely to be decommissioned Daily News- Miner , By Sam Friedman sfriedman@newsminer.com, May 15, 2018 

      FAIRBANKS — An Army Corp of Engineers team is planning the formal decommissioning of the only nuclear power plant ever built in Alaska, Fort Greely’s SM-1A plant.

The SM-1A plant provided steam and electricity to the Army post near Delta Junction off and on between 1962 and 1972. It was one of eight experimental projects to test the use of small nuclear power plants at remote installations.

It’s expected to take about 10 years to plan, contract out and complete the SM-1A cleanup, according to a Baltimore-based team from the Army Corps of Engineers that came to Fort Greely for meetings last month……….

When SM-1A shut down in 1972, the Army chose to place the facility into a safe storage status instead of formally decommissioning it. The highly enriched uranium fuel and waste were shipped out of Alaska and radioactive components of the reactor were encased in cement.

The Army chose this temporary method of mothballing the facility out of hope that within a relatively short amount of time significant quantities of radioactive waste would decay to a safer nonradioactive state, according to an Army Corps of Engineers website about the SM-1A at bit.ly/2G7TjVH.

Later studies showed that the volume of radioactive waste wasn’t decreasing as expected and that a more hands-on approach was needed to clean up the plant. The increasing costs of nuclear waste disposal also motivated the Army to begin cleaning up the site.

There’s no estimate yet for the cost of decomissioning SM-1A, but such a project for a similar power plant has a budget of $66.4 million.

A timeline for the project indicates a request for proposals will be sent out by 2021, with a contract awarded in 2022. The actual cleanup work is expected to take about five years. http://www.newsminer.com/news/local_news/nuclear-power-plant-at-fort-greely-to-be-decommissioned/article_d9ba87c4-580f-11e8-a3cb-6bea95b1bfd3.html

May 16, 2018 Posted by | decommission reactor, USA | Leave a comment

UK financial grant for research to develop self-learning robots to decommission nuclear waste

Lincoln University 4th May 2018 , Researchers have secured £1.1 million in grant funding to develop
artificial intelligence systems to enable self-learning robots to be
deployed in place of humans to hazardous nuclear sites.

It is estimated that up to £200 billion will be spent on the clean-up and decommissioning
of nuclear waste over the next 100 years.

Now, a team of computer scientists from the University of Lincoln will create machine learning
algorithms to increase capabilities in several crucial areas of nuclear
robotics, including waste handling, cell decommissioning and site
monitoring with mobile robots.

Machine learning is an application of artificial intelligence (AI) which enables systems to collect data and use
it to inform automated decision-making and make improvements based on
experience without being explicitly programmed.

The Lincoln team will create algorithms for vision-guided robot grasping, manipulation and
cutting, mobile robot navigation, and outdoor mapping and navigation. The
aim is to build systems which can use machine learning to adapt to the
unique conditions of nuclear sites, including locations contaminated by
radiation.

The Lincoln project is part of the National Centre for Nuclear
Robotics (NCNR), a multi-disciplinary EPSRC RAI (Robotics and Artificial
Intelligence) Hub led by the University of Birmingham, and also involves
Queen Mary University of London, the University of West England, University
of Bristol, University of Edinburgh, and Lancaster University.

http://www.lincoln.ac.uk/news/latestnews/

May 5, 2018 Posted by | decommission reactor, technology, UK | Leave a comment

Global nuclear decommissioning services to be valued at USD 8.90 billion by 2025

 

The global nuclear decommissioning services market size is expected to be valued at USD 8.90 billion by 2025
Nuclear Decommissioning Services Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Reactor Type (PWR, BWR, PHWR, GCR), By Strategy (Immediate and Deferred Dismantling, Entombment), And Segment Forecasts, 2018 – 2025   
 BY Sarah Smith Research Advisor at Reportbuyer.com Email: sarah@reportbuyer.com  ReportBuyer   LONDONApril 3, 2018 /PRNewswire/ –According to a new report by Grand View Research, Inc., exhibiting a 6.8% CAGR during the forecast period. Global nuclear phase out and rising support from governments post nuclear accidents are among major factors expected to fuel market growth over the years to come.

Rise in public safety concerns due to hazardous consequences of nuclear accidents is set to actuate market demand over the coming years.In addition, increasing sustainability concerns are likely to positively impact market growth.

The transitioning trend toward renewable energy thanks to various government initiatives and regulations is also projected to promote nuclear decommissioning services over the forecast period.

With extensive research and development underway, various novel decommissioning technologies to enable efficient dismantling of nuclear facilities have been developed. Furthermore, in order to enable sustainable development, government authorities are providing various incentives and support schemes for efficient dismantling of nuclear plants. …….

The global nuclear decommissioning services market size is expected to be valued at USD 8.90 billion by 2025, according to a new report by Grand View Research, Inc., exhibiting a 6.8% CAGR during the forecast period. Global nuclear phase out and rising support from governments post nuclear accidents are among major factors expected to fuel market growth over the years to come.

Rise in public safety concerns due to hazardous consequences of nuclear accidents is set to actuate market demand over the coming years.In addition, increasing sustainability concerns are likely to positively impact market growth.

The transitioning trend toward renewable energy thanks to various government initiatives and regulations is also projected to promote nuclear decommissioning services over the forecast period.

With extensive research and development underway, various novel decommissioning technologies to enable efficient dismantling of nuclear facilities have been developed. Furthermore, in order to enable sustainable development, government authorities are providing various incentives and support schemes for efficient dismantling of nuclear plants.

Key market players include Orano Group; Babcock International Group PLC; Westinghouse Electric Company LLC; AECOM Group; Studsvik AB; Bechtel Group Inc.; GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy; and Magnox Ltd. These companies mainly focus on innovation to improve service quality and meet global demand.

Download the full report: https://www.reportbuyer.com/product/5360564  https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/the-global-nuclear-decommissioning-services-market-size-is-expected-to-be-valued-at-usd-890-billion-by-2025-300623629.html

April 4, 2018 Posted by | 2 WORLD, business and costs, decommission reactor | Leave a comment

375 billion yen (2.86 billion euros) to dismantle Japan’s Monju breeder nuclear reactor

Le Monde 1st April 2018, [Machine Translation] By validating, on Wednesday 28 March, the project to
dismantle the Monju breeder reactor, the Nuclear Regulatory Authority (ARN)
thwarting Japan’s ambition to control the fuel cycle and adds a new nuclear
bill in the archipelago. The project involves a dismantling over thirty
years of the facility built in Tsuruga in the department of Fukui (center).
It should cost 375 billion yen (2.86 billion euros). The operation will
start as soon as July by the removal of the fuel. Then the sodium –
liquid delicate cooling to handle because flammable on contact with air –
will be removed. Disassembly will follow, with an end scheduled for 2048.
http://www.lemonde.fr/energies/article/2018/04/01/nucleaire-les-ambitions-contrariees-du-japon_5279295_1653054.html

April 4, 2018 Posted by | decommission reactor, Japan | Leave a comment

Westinghouse closing down nuclear stations in Sweden

Nucnet 16th March 2018, US-based Westinghouse Electric Company has completed a decommissioning
project at the Barseback nuclear power station in Sweden that included the
underwater segmentation and packaging of the reactor vessel internals.
Westinghouse said it had also carried out upfront engineering studies, and
equipment manufacturing and qualification for the project, which was part
of the first dismantling and decommissioning of a commercial nuclear power
plant in Sweden.

Barseback-2, a 600-MW boiling water reactor unit, began
commercial operation in July 1977 and was permanently shut down in May
2005, with decommissioning work beginning in August 2016. The closure
decision, announced in October 2004, followed what the government described
as failure to reach an agreement with the power industry on the details and
timetable for a voluntary phaseout of Sweden’s nuclear facilities Its
sister unit, Barseback-1, was permanently shut down in November 1999.
Westinghouse said it is now due to begin decommissioning work on
Barseback-1, with an estimated completion date of April 2019.

https://www.nucnet.org/all-the-news/2018/03/16/westinghouse-completes-decommissioning-project-at-sweden-s-barseback

March 22, 2018 Posted by | decommission reactor, Switzerland | Leave a comment

Britain’s Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) wasted tax-payers’money bigtime , in its failed contract with Cavendish Fluor

Nucnet 1st March 2018, The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) completely failed in both the procurement and management of a contract to clean up the UK’s Magnox
nuclear reactor and research sites, a report by the Public Accounts
Committee says.

The report, released on 28 February 2018, says this
disrupted an important component of vital nuclear decommissioning work and
cost the taxpayer upwards of £122m (€137m, $167m). The £6.2bn contract
— one of the largest awarded by the UK government — was to dismantle 12
first-generation Magnox nuclear sites.

It was awarded to Cavendish Fluor Partnership, a joint venture between UK-based Babcock International and
Fluor of the US. The committee, which oversees government expenditure,
said: “The NDA ran an overly complex procurement process, resulting in it
awarding the contract to the wrong bidder, and subsequently settling legal
claims from a losing consortium to the tune of nearly £100m.”

The committee also said the NDA, a public body established in 2004 to oversee
the clean-up of the UK’s nuclear legacy, “drastically
under-estimated” the scale of the work needed to decommission the sites
at the time it let the contract – a failure which ultimately led to the
termination of the Magnox contract nine years early.

The NDA did not have sufficient capability to manage the procurement or the complex process of
resolving differences between what the contractor was told to expect on the
sites and what it actually found, the committee concluded.

The NDA will now  have to spend even more effort and money to find a suitable way of managing
these sites after the contract comes to an official end in September 2019,
the committee said. The NDA may have further wasted taxpayers’ money by
paying its previous contractor for work that was not done. The NDA cannot
fully account for £500m of the £2.2bn increase in the cost of the
contract between September 2014 and March 2017. In particular, it does not
know whether the £500m cost increase was due to its incorrect assumptions
about the state of the sites when it let the contract or underperformance
by the previous contractor.
https://www.nucnet.org/all-the-news/2018/03/01/accounts-committee-says-nda-completely-failed-with-6-2-billion-uk-magnox-contract

March 3, 2018 Posted by | business and costs, decommission reactor, politics, UK | Leave a comment

Removal of spent fuel from Fukui’s defunct Fugen reactor delayed by nine years

 KYODO, JAPAN TIMES,  FEB 26, 2018  The transfer of spent nuclear fuel from the Fugen converter reactor in Tsuruga, Fukui Prefecture, will be postponed for nine years until a new reprocessing facility can be chosen, the Japan Atomic Energy Agency said Monday…….https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2018/02/26/national/removal-spent-fuel-fukuis-defunct-fugen-reactor-delayed-nine-years/#.WpR4vx1ubG

February 26, 2018 Posted by | decommission reactor, Japan | Leave a comment

South Africa’s nuclear decommissioning dilemma

Why decommissioning South Africa’s Koeberg nuclear plant won’t be easy The Conversation,  Hartmut Winkler, Professor of Physics, University of Johannesburg, January 26, 2018 

Africa’s only operational nuclear power plant is in an area called Koeberg, outside Cape Town in South Africa. The life span of the plant was originally meant to end in 2024. But after an upgrade it’s now expected to operate until around 2044.

In theory it could be shut down, or decommissioned, earlier than if, for example, there was a spike in anti-nuclear sentiment, it becomes unprofitable or a serious technical failure developed……

The funding for decommissioning, which is an expensive process, needs to be secured well in advance. Failing to decommission the site properly would saddle Cape Town with a dangerous radiation hazard for generations to come.

Responsibility for Koeberg’s site rehabilitation rests with its operator, the state electricity utility, Eskom. For now decommissioning Koeberg is not a priority for Eskom’s newly appointed board given its need to deal with the financial pressure and allegations of corruption the utility is facing.

But it will nevertheless need to start planning soon……….

All nuclear power plants accredited by the International Atomic Energy Agency must regularly set aside funds to finance the eventual decommissioning. By 2016, Eskom had paid R10.9 billion into a trust for this purpose.

But these provisions seem insufficient and the utility will probably need to raise additional funding to shut down Koeberg.

Eskom is responsible to pay for the site’s rehabilitation, but not for final waste disposal. The funding of that process ultimately becomes the responsibility of the state.

Waste from Koeberg

The arrangement is that low and intermediate-level nuclear waste is transported to a site called Vaalputs in sparsely populated Namakwaland, about 500 km north of Cape Town. High-level waste is kept on site in Koeberg in what are known as fuel pools.

South Africa doesn’t have storage facilities for its high-level waste. Like the rest of the world, construction of nuclear plants was initiated without a specific waste disposal plan, with the understanding that each country would manage and pay for it themselves.

Unfortunately South Africa is likely to approach decommissioning Koeberg in the same way other countries have done it – by effectively leaving the waste on site indefinitely in temporary storage facilities. This avoids the expense of waste processing as well as making difficult political decisions. But it passes the problem to future generations while continuing to expose the nuclear plant’s neighbourhood to contamination risk. This is a serious risk at Koeberg given that it’s a mere 30 km from the Cape Town city centre.

Koeberg’s decommissioning is an awkward reality that cannot be ignored for much longer. This should become the main focus for nuclear professionals in South Africa, rather than new plants. Eskom and other parties in the energy space need to develop detailed, credible decommissioning work plans with realistic costing scenarios and funding strategies. A crisis can be avoided, but only through early and proper planning. https://theconversation.com/why-decommissioning-south-africas-koeberg-nuclear-plant-wont-be-easy-89888

February 10, 2018 Posted by | decommission reactor, South Africa | Leave a comment

The nuclear decommissioning process

Why decommissioning South Africa’s Koeberg nuclear plant won’t be easy  The Conversation,  Hartmut Winkler  Professor of Physics, University of Johannesburg, January 26, 2018  

“……..There are three stages in the rehabilitation of a nuclear facility.

  1. The plant must be dismantled. This is complicated because most of the material in and around the plant is radioactive to varying degrees and therefore dangerous to anything exposed to it. Radioactivity reduces with time, but for some isotopes commonly found in nuclear waste, the drop in radiation levels can be very slow. Because of this a plant will only be dismantled years after it’s been switched off.
  2. The dangerous nuclear waste, or high level waste must be reprocessed. Most of the material stays dangerous for decades but some isotopes retain high levels of radiation levels for thousands of years. A portion of nuclear waste can be converted into reusable or less radioactive forms through nuclear engineering processes. These processes are complex and there are only a few facilities in the world that can perform them. This means that South Africa’s high level waste will have to be transported overseas. Reprocessing facilities include La Hague in France and the Russian Mayak site, thought to be responsible for the 2017 ruthenium leak incident.
  3. The remaining nuclear waste must be secured in storage, virtually forever. This needs an isolated site that can’t be damaged by natural disasters or other processes that could cause radioactive material to seep into the surrounding environment, especially ground water. This final storage need is a massive headache worldwide. An example is the German Gorleben final repository site. It’s been the scene of protests for decades, preventing any further storage of waste on the site.

There are a handful of cases where the first two stages have been completed, typically over periods of ten years. But completing the final storage phase of nuclear waste hasn’t been achieved for any former plants. Their most hazardous waste is still in temporary storage, sometimes even on site……… https://theconversation.com/why-decommissioning-south-africas-koeberg-nuclear-plant-wont-be-easy-89888

February 10, 2018 Posted by | 2 WORLD, decommission reactor, Reference | Leave a comment

The Era of Nuclear Decommissioning

Nuclear power in crisis: we are entering the Era of Nuclear Decommissioning, Energy Post,  by Jim Green  “…………The Era of Nuclear Decommissioning     The ageing of the global reactor fleet isn’t yet a crisis for the industry, but it is heading that way. In many countries with nuclear power, the prospects for new reactors are dim and rear-guard battles are being fought to extend the lifespans of ageing reactors that are approaching or past their design date.

Perhaps the best characterisation of the global nuclear industry is that a new era is approaching ‒ the Era of Nuclear Decommissioning ‒ following on from its growth spurt from the 1960s to the ’90s then 20 years of stagnation.

The Era of Nuclear Decommissioning will entail:

  • A slow decline in the number of operating reactors.
  • An increasingly unreliable and accident-prone reactor fleet as ageing sets in.
  • Countless battles over lifespan extensions for ageing reactors.
  • An internationalisation of anti-nuclear opposition as neighbouring countries object to the continued operation of ageing reactors (international opposition to Belgium’s ageing reactors is a case in point ‒ and there are numerous other examples).
  • Battles over and problems with decommissioning projects (e.g. the UK government’s £100+ million settlement over a botched decommissioning tendering process).
  • Battles over taxpayer bailout proposals for companies and utilities that haven’t set aside adequate funds for decommissioning and nuclear waste management and disposal. (According to Nuclear Energy Insider, European nuclear utilities face “significant and urgent challenges” with over a third of the continent’s nuclear plants to be shut down by 2025, and utilities facing a €118 billion shortfall in decommissioning and waste management funds.)
  • Battles over proposals to impose nuclear waste repositories and stores on unwilling or divided communities.

The Era of Nuclear Decommissioning will be characterised by escalating battles (and escalating sticker shock) over lifespan extensions, decommissioning and nuclear waste management. In those circumstances, it will become even more difficult than it currently is for the industry to pursue new reactor projects. A feedback loop could take hold and then the nuclear industry will be well and truly in crisis ‒ if it isn’t already.

Editor’s Note

Dr Jim Green is the editor of the Nuclear Monitor newsletter, where a longer version of this article was originally published.

http://energypost.eu/nuclear-power-in-crisis-welcome-to-the-era-of-nuclear-decommissioning/

 

February 2, 2018 Posted by | 2 WORLD, decommission reactor, Reference | Leave a comment

Not easy, nor cheap, to shut down South Africa’s Koeberg nuclear plant

The Conversation 25th Jan 2018, Why decommissioning South Africa’s Koeberg nuclear plant won’t be easy.
Koeberg has two units, each generating 930 MW, which contribute about 4% of
South Africa’s power capacity. They were built by French developer
Framatome, now called Areva.

Researchers in France, Germany and the UK have
calculated widely different costs for nuclear cleanups (including waste
disposal) in their countries. The potential cost of decommissioning a site
comparable to Koeberg according to the French costing model would be R8.4
billion. Some analysts say this is unrealistically low. The German model
puts the number at around R39 billion and the UK model at R76 billion.
https://theconversation.com/why-decommissioning-south-africas-koeberg-nuclear-plant-wont-be-easy-89888

January 27, 2018 Posted by | decommission reactor, South Africa | Leave a comment

France’s costly and unsatisfactory efforts at dismantling nuclear reactors

Romandie 12th Jan 2018 [Machine Translation] Dismantling: in France, nuclear country, the task remains immense. EDF may well show international ambitions in terms of nuclear dismantling, the industry still has to prove itself in France, the world’s second largest producer of nuclear electricity, where the task remains immense and the delays numerous.

“We dismantle nine reactors in France We consider that our know-how can put us in a very good position to win real market share internationally,” assured AFP on Wednesday Sylvain Granger director of deconstruction projects at EDF. An ambition
“staggering” for Barbara Romagnan, former PS MP, author of a parliamentary report that highlighted in early 2017 the “underrated” costs and growing delays of these projects.

“None of these French reactors has yet been totally dismantled, even though they were closed between 1985 and 1997,”
she argues. Elsewhere in the world, seventeen reactor vessels (more than 100 MW) have been dismantled in the United States, Germany and Spain, according to the Institute for Radiation Protection and Safety (IRSN).

In Chooz, EDF’s most advanced site, located in the Ardennes, the dismantling of the tank, the ultimate and most delicate stage, began in 2017. But the cutting of the internal components of the tank was suspended after the contamination. in June, a Swedish employee from Westinghouse, to whom EDF subcontracted this operation, according to the French company. EDF
estimates at 79 billion euros the cost of dismantling all its reactors in France (including 18.5 billion spent fuel management), said Thursday the company that spoke in 2000 of 16 billion euros.
https://www.romandie.com/news/880085.rom

January 15, 2018 Posted by | decommission reactor, France | 1 Comment

Radiation problem so serious that Hanford Plutonium Plant demolition has been stopped

Regulators to DOE: No more Hanford demolition until we say it’s safe http://www.tri-cityherald.com/news/local/hanford/article194318189.html, BY ANNETTE CARY, acary@tricityherald.com, January 11, 2018, Hanford regulators have ordered the Department of Energy not to restart demolition of the nuclear reservation’s highly radioactively contaminated Plutonium Finishing Plant until regulators agree the work can be done safely.

 

January 13, 2018 Posted by | decommission reactor, incidents, USA | Leave a comment