West of England Metals and Materials Association
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Back to the future — Natural analogues and the long term safety of radioactive waste disposal

Ian Crossland, Independent Consultant (ex-Nirex)

Venue: BAWA Filton

Wednesday November 4, 2009 at 19:30

Disposal of long-lived radioactive waste aims to provide containment for as long as the waste remains hazardous, which can mean hundreds of thousands of years. Assurance of long-term safety largely comes from 'natural analogues' that are used to support computer models by providing long-term data. Perhaps the most famous analogues are the Oklo natural reactors in Gabon, but many others have been studied over the past 30 years relating to such issues as long-term degradation of concrete, metal corrosion, sealing properties of clay and so on. The lecture will describe some recent studies.

Copper cannon being retrieved from the Baltic Sea after 310 years.
Cannon from Baltic

Corrosion studies on the cannon have been used to support long-term modelling of copper canisters in a deep radioactive waste repository.

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