Ventilation planning for a prospective nuclear waste repository in volcanic tuff

Wallace, K. G.
Organization: Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration
Pages: 8
Publication Date: Jan 1, 1988
In 1982, the US Congress passed the Nuclear Waste Policy Act (NWPA) to provide for the development of an underground repository for spent nuclear fuel. This development will be managed by the US Department of Energy. In 1986, the President selected three areas for site characterization to determine their suitability for the development of an underground repository. Those sites were: (1) a site in volcanic tuff located at Yucca Mountain in Nevada, (2) a site in bedded salt located in Deaf Smith County in Texas, and (3) a site in basalt located in Hanford, WA. At present, conceptual repository designs are being developed for each site. A key element of a repository design is the underground ventilation system required to support construction, nuclear waste emplacement, and potential waste retrieval. This paper describes the preliminary ventilation system designed for the repository in tuff. The concept provides separate ventilation systems for the construction and waste emplacement activities. The paper further describes the means by which acceptable environmental conditions will be reestablished to allow reentry into previously closed rooms for the purpose of inspection, maintenance, or retrieval.
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