IAEA Consultancy Meeting on the Small Cask for Spent Fuel Sample Transportation between Hot Laboratories

Start date : 04-05-10
End date : 06-05-10

Terms of Reference (TOR)

Consultancy Meeting on the Small Cask for Spent Fuel SampleTransportation between Hot Laboratories

Task: B.3.01/0 (New added activities)
Consultancy Meeting on the Small Cask for Spent Fuel Sample Transportation between Hot Laboratories
Date: 4-6 May 2010
Location: Vienna International Centre
Room: VIC B1174

Background Information:

Currently the transportation casks market is optimized only for transporting spent fuel and radioisotopes for medical and research purposes. However, more and more reactor materials and fuel cycle researchers are looking for transports of small amounts of radioactive samples across different hot labs. But the current unavailability of a small and inexpensive transport cask for such activities prohibits the exchange post-irradiation examination programs. It is becoming more and more stringent for the hot labs to collaborate and exchange samples between them, in order to provide international research community the best service and solutions. The necessity of transporting small quantities of radio-active samples for research purposes will increase even more with the increased fuel and materials research for the advanced reactors and fuel cycles.

It is also becoming very clear that this need for a small and inexpensive transport cask is not restricted to exchange between hot labs on the same continent but it appears to be a worldwide problem. It is necessary to develop a specification of a new cask, optimized for the safe and reliable, international and intercontinental transportation of small quantities of irradiated material at a competitive price.

Objective of the Consultancy Meeting:

The primary objective of the Consultancy Meeting is to discuss and further develop a specification of a small cask for PIE samples.

It is also expected that the experts from various fields such as safety, licensing, transportation and PIE will discuss on the same topic and develop an ongoing activity that will result in development of an affordable cask transportation system for nuclear research community in near future. The participation of fuel experts from the nuclear fuel cycle and materials section and transportation experts from the transport safety unit in the division of radiation, transport and waste safety is expected.

Scope of the Meeting:

The focus of the meeting will be on the exchanges of the experts’ opinion on the basic requirements of a small cask for the transportation of spent fuel samples. The scope on the following activities is expected to be discussed at the Consultancy Meeting:

• Basic regulations 
    - Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air (Doc 9284) 
    - IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations (DGR) 
    - Package Design Safety Reports for the Transport of Radioactive Material
• Chemical compositions of samples 
    - UO2, MOX, dispersion (MTR, Inert Matrix Fuel), metallic fuel, TRISO 
    - irradiated cladding and other structural materials
• Quantity limit 
    - maximum allowable content of fissile material
• Activity limit 
    - maximum allowable radioactivity of sample (shielding)
• Heat limit 
    - maximum allowable power of sample
• Package dimension 
    - the most cost effective dimension of the cask
• Weight of the cask 
    - Maximum allowable weight for air transport
• Loading modes 
    - Comparison of horizontal loading and top loading 
    - Docking with hot cell door
• Licensing
• Transportation cost

Expected Outcome:

It is expected that the consultancy meeting will develop a preliminary specification of a small transportation cask for spent fuel samples. The specification will be used as basic requirements for developing a small transportation cask for spent fuel research community.

Participating Experts (Tentative):

Ms. Ann Leenaers SCK-CEN (Belgium)
Mr. Eli Tcherkoff TN International (France)
Ms. Anna Dormann Studsvik Nuclear AB (Sweden)
Mr. Gary Owens WNTI (UK)
Mr. Adam Robinson INL (USA)
Mr. I. Reiche Federal Office for Radiation Protection (Germany) 


The meeting is open to everyone but a letter of invitation will be required. If you like to attend and receive the LOI please sent an email to Mr. Hojin Ryu (H.Ryu@iaea.org) or Ann Leenaers (ann.leenaers@sckcen.be).