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IAEA Meeting Explores HTGR Deep-Burn Concepts for Incineration of Nuclear Waste

Dr. Pavel Tsvetkov, associate professor in the Department of Nuclear Engineering, participated in the IAEA Technical Meeting on Development of “Deep-Burn” Concepts using High Temperature Gas Cooled Reactor (HTGR) coated Particle Fuel for Incineration of Nuclear Waste, Surplus Fissile Materials and Plutonium without Recourse to Multiple Processing.

The meeting was held at IAEA Headquarters in Vienna on August 5-7, 2013. The purpose of this meeting was to explore various Deep-Burn options and concepts being developed in Member States and to appraise the progress made towards the maturity of Deep-Burn concepts based on HTGR designs. Tsvetkov reported on studies he conducts with his students on Deep-Burn High Temperature Reactor focusing on TRU utilization and nuclear waste management.

“Nuclear power carries known advantages and challenges. We envision that development and deployment of Deep-Burn systems will allow synergistically balancing those while addressing the concerns,” said Tsvetkov.

The over-decade long efforts to develop and assess perspectives of a Deep-Burn High Temperature Reactor (DB-HTR) in Tsvetkov’s group started in 2004 and have been supported via a series of federally funded projects focused on transuranic material (TRU) utilization and nuclear waste management scenarios via specially-designed HTRs. The decade-long program is focused on fuel utilization, in-core management and optimization recognizing the unique ability of HTRs with prismatic cores to be loaded and reloaded in 3D. The work further evolved and expanded toward advanced sensors, 3D mapping, and fission product management. Significant portion of R&D is dedicated to validation efforts.


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