Friday, April 25, 2014

How to Calculate Total Fission Inventory in used Fuel (Thank you to NRC for helping)

NRC responding to a question on the NRC blog

This helps to answer my questions on total inventory of radiation at Fukushima. That will present a worst case scenario of release.

stock: I have reviewed and this is a great resource.    I asked a further question related to MOX which I think will show much worse ending product of spent fuel due to more neutrons flying around and a hotter burn rate.   Will advise if I obtain data.

now, a good estimate of total radiation inventory at Fukushima may be calculated.    I will do so, busy on spring projects, it may take a while.  

I was asked to respond to your question.
The NRC does not track the isotopic inventory in each spent fuel assembly at nuclear power plants. The following is a link to a public document titled “Characteristics of Potential Repository Wastes”:

It contains physical, isotopic, and thermal characteristics of all type of commercial spent nuclear fuel assemblies. For example, in the middle of Table 2.4.13 on Page 2.4.17, the most dominant (i.e., >1%) isotopes, in terms of curies/Metric Tons of Initial Heavy Metal (MTIHM), for a typical Pressurized Water Reactor (PWR) spent fuel assembly enriched up to 4.42%, burned up to 40,000 MWD/MTIHM, and cooled for 10 years are shown. These numbers are still valid to date. The number for each isotope should be multiplied by 0.45 MTIHM/assembly, which is a typical number for a PWR assembly, in order to obtain the isotopic inventory in a single PWR fuel assembly.
Maureen Conley

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