Izvestiya vuzov. Yadernaya Energetika

The peer-reviewed scientific and technology journal. ISSN: 0204-3327

Problems of radiation safety calculations related to spent fuel transport casks

12/05/2019 2019 - #04 Nuclear power plants

Sobolev A.V. Danilov P.A.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.26583/npe.2019.4.03

UDC: 621.039.746

The article discusses the stages of calculating the radiation safety of spent fuel transport casks, in particular, transport packages and some associated problems. The problem of describing the source of neutrons and gamma radiation of spent nuclear fuel is shown. For individual designs of fuel assemblies, data are given on isotopes that make the main contribution to the neutron source as well as on gamma rays in nuclear fuel material and structural materials. The authors emphasize the necessity of analyzing the influence of the spent fuel initial parameters on the formation of the radiation spectrum and, therefore, on the radiation situation around the transport casks. Attention is paid to the problem of assessing the attenuation of gamma radiation in calculating protection analytically and using software. Due to the ambiguity of the position of the zone with the highest effective dose value on the spent fuel transport cask surface, it is indicated that preliminary estimates are required to take into account all radiation sources and their nonuniformities.

All the problems presented in the article are currently being solved by means of rather complex and voluminous calculations that take a long time. In order to be able to conduct a preliminary assessment of the radiation situation around the spent fuel transport package, the authors propose to create a methodology that will determine the type of interrelations between the maximum effective dose and input parameters, such as fuel burnup, storage, fuel composition, protection material in the spent fuel transport cask, etc. This methodology will make it possible to improve the efficiency of the process of designing the spent fuel transport casks, avoid possible design errors and, in particular, when used as intended, resolve the issue of the spent fuel cask loading configuration.

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spent fuel transfer cask radiation safety neutron source gamma source radiation protection calculation