Nuclear Energy and Economic Growth
Chinese HTR Test Facility
Approval Regulations Interim Storage
Challenges Year 2016
Ten of the 12 major projects established by the World Association of Nuclear Operators (WANO) following the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear accident in 2011 have been completed. WANO chief executive officer Ken Ellis said that the closure of the projects means WANO had correct shortfalls that contributed to its inability to identify and direct the global industry support necessary to have prevented the Fukushima-Daiichi accident.
The relationship between nuclear energy consumption and economic growth in 13 OECD countries from 1980 to 2012 is analyzed. The panel causality results supported the feedback hypothesis in both the short-run and long-run. There is a positive relationship between nuclear energy consumption and economic growth. As such, nuclear energy consumption and economic growth complement and reinforce each other. Nuclear energy conservation policies may negatively affect economic growth rates.
Since 2007, the KONRAD final disposal for radioactive waste with negligible heat generation is approved; finally legally established by the Bundesverwaltungsgericht. Since then preparations for the disposal of waste are under the way under the direction of the Bundesamt für Strahlenschutz (BfS). But there are certain delays with the start of the operation. The reasons announced are becoming less convincing.
Cheng Ren, Xingtuan Yang and Shengyao Jiang
The first two 250-MWt high-temperature reactor pebble bed modules (HTR-PM) have been installing at the Shidaowan plant in Shandong Province, China. The values of the effective thermal conductivity of the pebble bed core are essential parameters for the design. For their determination, Tsinghua University in China has proposed a full-scale heat transfer experiment to conduct comprehensive thermal transfer tests in packed pebble bed and to determine the effective thermal conductivity.
Safety margins are an essential factor of the safety philosophy for nuclear power plants. They support to cover future requirements even today. The basic safety concept is one key topic as also aspects of process engineering, the dimensioning and mechanical analysis of systems and ageing management. Calculations with today’s capabilities are an integral part of the determination of safety margins. They can be used to analyse and to assess retrofit measures.
Pavel Bartoš, Petra Haladova and Petr Otčenášek
Options for the handling of spent nuclear fuel are described and a packaging cask for an underground repository is presented as also a robotic surface workplace for the repository. The potential for the closing the nuclear fuel cycle is discussed. Currently, a team of Czech experts is developing a project of fully robotic technology for manipulation and storage of packaging casks for spent nuclear fuel in host rock of underground repository.
The Act “Gesetz zur Suche und Auswahl eines Standortes für ein Endlager für Wärme entwickelnde radioaktive Abfälle” on the search and selection of a site for a repository for heat-generating radioactive waste as also other acts insert a new topic for interim site storage. The operation should be restricted for 40 years. This part of the act is analysed with respect to future requirements for the storage of waste.
The global supply of Mo-99 relies on a limited number of research reactors and processing facilities. Its production is essential as medical diagnostic imaging techniques using Tc-99m account for approximately 80% of all nuclear medicine procedures worldwide. The short half-life's of the radioisotopes requires a continuous supply. Several severe disruptions have been experienced over the past decade. Fortunately, the situation encouraged the industry to develop new projects and new production routes. The current status of Mo-99 supply is described and the efforts made to achieve a reliable Tc-99m availability for nuclear medicine is summarized.
Pravin U. Singare
The present study deals with the application of radiotracers 131I and 82Br as a non-destructive tool to evaluate the performance of Amberlite IRN78 (nuclear grade) and Indion NSSR (non-nuclear grade) anion exchange resins. In general based on radiotracer applications it was observed that Amberlite IRN78 resins show superior performance over Indion NSSR resins under identical operational parameters.
Matthias Lamm; Thorsten Hollands
Summary report on the Technical Sessions “Know-how, New Build and Innovations” and “Operation and Safety of Nuclear Installations, Fuel | SA: WASA-BOSS + CESAM” of the 46th Annual Conference on Nuclear Technology (AMNT 2015) held in Berlin, 5 to 7 May 2015. Other Sessions of AMNT 2015 have been covered in atw 7 to 12 (2015) and will be covered in further issues of atw.
In the debates about the use and the benefits of nuclear power plants the allegation is being made that nuclear power to this day had received public subsidies. That was the only reason why electricity from nuclear power plants was economically viable. That statement is wrong. A brief overview is given about the public funds for nuclear energy research and development. In relation to the electricity production less than 0.16 €Cents per kilowatt-hour have been spend by public funds for R&D.
As we usher in the new year, it is worth taking time to reflect on the key developments for the world’s nuclear energy industry in 2015. The past year was certainly one of mixed fortunes for the industry. Looking ahead into 2016, key challenges will include the need to recruit and train the skilled workforce that will be needed to support extended operations of nuclear plants, in addition to new-build and decommissioning projects.