atw - October 2016

IAEA Supporting to Combat Zika Virus Outbreaks
UK Academics Share Their Thoughts on Hinkley Point C
Legal Aspects of Shut-down and Decommissioning
The New Site Selection Process in Germany 
The Nuclear Fuel Bank Project

UK Academics Share Their Thoughts on Hinkley Point C


The proposed Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant project has experienced controversy in the public since its inception. However the proposed Hinkley plant has many benefits. It will be the biggest construction site in Europe, providing 25,000 jobs. It will generate low carbon energy, providing enough power for six million homes, and supplying seven per cent of the UK´s electricity needs over its 60 year lifetime. Six experts from Imperial College London, one of Europe’s top science-based universities, give their opinions on Hinkley Point C.

International Atomic Energy Agency: Supporting Member States to Combat Zika Virus Outbreaks Through its Human Health Programme

Taric Becic, Diana Paez und Mai Abdel-Wahab

Zika virus, discovered in late 1940s in Uganda, has rapidly spread into other parts of Africa and Asia. Since 2007, outbreaks have been documented in a great number of countries and territories, with Latin America and Caribbean region carrying the highest burden. The IAEA has therefore undertaken immediate actions to support members states as part of the global effort led by WHO. Due to its well-established know-how in the use of molecular diagnostic techniques, the IAEA organised a training course for detection of Zika virus in coordination with WHO-PAHO and provided equipment and reagents to some member states in Central America and the Caribbean as well as Pacific islands. In addition, the IAEA’s support also comprises SIT as part of integrated vector management control.

The Common Good Accompaniment on the Long Road to the Site Selection – The Report of the Commission Disposal of Highly Radioactive Wastes and the Site Selection Act

Ulrike Feldmann

Almost in time, on 5 July 2016 the “Commission Disposal of High Radioactive Waste” presented its report according to the German Site Selection Act (for disposal of radioactive waste). On July 20, 2016, the act for reorganisation of the organisational structure in the field of radioactive waste disposal entered into force. The new law raises a number of institutional, organisational and fundamental questions on the way to a final repository for high-level waste. The path continues to appear rocky and long.

Tobias Leidinger

The legally phase-out the peaceful use of nuclear energy in Germany has put into focus the topics decommissioning and dismantling of nuclear power plants. Technically and legally issues have to be managed, which are often closely connected. From a legal perspective it is important, that the initial situation of operation and operation phases of the nuclear power plant are settled. Some of the most relevant legal issues are more accurate presented and discussed. They are related to the period after shut-down and before granting the decommissioning license.

A Task for Generations – A Commission Plans for the Future (Part 2): Public Participation, Time Required, International Comparison, Past Conflicts

Bernhard Fischer and Gerd Jäger

German Federal and State governments have committed the political foundations for the disposal of high radioactive, heat-generating waste with the Repository Site Selection Act (StandAG). The act defines a new site selection procedure and the “Kommission Lagerung hoch radioaktiver Abfallstoffe” (Commission Disposal of High Radioactive Waste). The Commission should evaluate the site selection process criteria, processes and decision-making basis, evaluate the StandAG and make proposals for public participation and transparency. The commission presented its final report on 5 July 2016. atw spoke with the representatives of industry, Dr Bernhard Fischer and Prof Dr Gerd Jäger, on the commission work.

The New Site Selection Process in Germany: Results of the Commission Disposal of High Radioactive Waste

Klaus-Jürgen Brammer and Stefan Weber

After the open exploration of the salt dome Gorleben was suspended for political reasons and in favour of a new selection process in Germany the German Bundestag passed the site selection law mid -2013. It provides a three-phase process, which shall lead to the designation of a site with “best possible safety” in particular for highly radioactive waste in the year 2031. Early July 2016 the “Commission Disposal of High Radioactive Waste” submitted now its final report. Thus it is up to the legislator to legally implement the commission’s recommendations and to clear the path for the start of phase 1 of the selection process.

Comparative Study on Thermal Performance of Natural Draft Cooling Towers with Finned Shells

Mohsen Goodarzi

The cooling efficiency of natural draft cooling towers under crosswind condition should be improved. In the present research work three different externally finned shells were considered for a typical natural draft cooling tower to investigate the cooling improvement. They were numerically simulated under normal and crosswind conditions. Numerical results show that twisting four fin plates over the tower shell along the 45° peripheral angle, could improve the cooling efficiency up to 6.5 %. Because of the periodic shape of the fin plates, the cooling efficiency of the cooling tower with finned shell is less sensitive to the change of wind.

AMNT 2016: Workshop: Preserving Competence in Nuclear Technology

Wolfgang Steinwarz

On the 18th workshop Preserving Competence in Nuclear Technology 24 young scientists presented the scientific results from their work covering a broad spectrum of technical areas. This demonstrated again the strong engagement of the younger generation as part of the German nuclear society. Prof. Dr.-Ing. Eckart Laurin, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Marco K. Koch, Dr. Katharina Stummeyer, and Dr.-Ing. Wolfgang Steinwarz as members of the jury assessed the written compacts and the oral presentations to award the Siempelkamp Competence Price 2016 to Andreas Wanninger from Technische Universität München.

Development of Computational Methods to Describe The Mechanical Behavior of PWR Fuel Assemblies

Andreas Wanninger, Marcus Seidl and Rafael Macián-Juan

To investigate the static mechanical response of PWR fuel assemblies (FAs) in the reactor core, a structural FA model is being developed using the FEM code ANSYS Mechanical. To assess the capabilities of the model, lateral deflection tests are performed for a reference FA. For this purpose we distinguish between two environments, in-laboratory and in-reactor for different burn-ups. The results are in qualitative agreement with experimental tests and show the stiffness decrease of the FAs during irradiation in the reactor core.

Enhancement of ASTEC and COCOSYS Regarding Fission Product Release During MCCI

Kathrin Agethen

The focus in this paper is on the enhancement of the fission product release model during molten core concrete interaction in the severe accident analysis codes ASTEC and COCOSYS. After both codes are harmonised and the model interaction as well as the input parameters are adapted, extended model approaches are implemented. These lead to an improvement of the release rates for selected semi-volatile species validated against the ACE tests under ex-vessel conditions.

Experimental Investigation on Isothermal Stratified Flow Mixing in a Horizontal T-Junction

Alexander Isaev, Rudi Kulenovic and Eckart Laurien

Turbulent and stratified flows can lead to thermal fatigue in piping systems of nuclear power plants (NPP). Such flows can be investigated in the University of Stuttgart Fluid-Structure-Interaction (FSI) facility with a T-Junction at thermal conditions with temperature differences of up to 255 K and at pressures of maximum 75 bars.

AMNT 2016 Key Topics: Enhanced Safety & Operation Excellence and Decommissioning Experience & Waste Management Solutions

Tatiana Salnikova, Andreas Schaffrath and Stefan Weber

Summary report on the Key Topics “Enhanced Safety & Operation Excellence” and “Decommissioning Experience & Waste Management Solutions” of the 47th Annual Conference on Nuclear Technology (AMNT 2016) held in Hamburg, 10 to 12 May 2016. Other Sessions of AMNT 2016 have been and will be covered in further issues of atw.

As Nuclear Fuel Bank Project Moves Ahead, Support for Facility Cannot Falter

John Shepherd

During the summer 2016, the historic next steps were taken to establish an international nuclear fuel bank under the auspices of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The ‘bank’, officially known as the IAEA Low Enriched Uranium (LEU) Storage Facility is scheduled to be ready for operations by this time next year. The key role of the fuel bank will be to hold a reserve of LEU, the basic ingredient of nuclear fuel.


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