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Storage of radioactive waste


Storage is a process, in which radioactive waste (RAW) is temporarily stored in the premises and facilities built for this purpose in order to be managed in the future (e.g. its future storage in a repository, short-term storage before its further treatment).

Storage plays an important role in the process of RAW management for various reasons. One of the reasons is the storage of RAW before its further treatment or conditioning, with regard to different parameters, in the facility – Technologies for Treatment and Conditioning of RAW. The system of RAW management is, of course, optimized, while the emphasis is placed on mutual interconnection and sufficient capacity of particular technologies. The radioactive waste is stored only if it is necessary for capacity or technological reasons.

Another reason is the construction of a new facility – Technologies for Treatment and Conditioning of RAW. For example, a large amount of metallic radioactive waste arises from the decommissioning process. Such waste is currently located in storage facilities and waiting for the active commissioning of the Facility for melting of metallic RAW. Another specific case is the storage of historical liquid RAW from the operation of the nuclear power plant A1, which is either gradually solidified into a suitable matrix or the way of its treatment is yet to be resolved.

The radioactive waste is further stored because of the decline in its activity and subsequently released into the environment. The higher activity waste is (in order to decrease its activity) either stored for a long period of time and subsequently disposed in the National RAW Repository in Mochovce or it will by permanently disposed in the deep geological repository after its completion.

The certified storage facilities, which are part of the nuclear installation Technologies for Treatment and Conditioning of RAW, are intended for the storage of radioactive waste from decommissioning of the nuclear power plants in Jaslovské Bohunice. A specialized storage facility, called the Integral Storage Facility for Radioactive Waste in Jaslovské Bohunice, is intended to store solid or solidified RAW. This storage fulfills three basic functions – the “extinction function” (RAW can be released into the environment), the “balancing function” (further treatment or conditioning of RAW) and the “storing function” (long-term storage of RAW in shielded and unshielded containers).