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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/M026566/1
Title: Advanced Waste Management Strategies for Technetium and Iodine in the Nuclear Fuel Cycle
Principal Investigator: Hyatt, Professor N
Other Investigators:
Freeman, Dr CL Corkhill, Dr C
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Dr MC Stennett
Project Partners:
Department: Materials Science and Engineering
Organisation: University of Sheffield
Scheme: Standard Research - NR1
Starts: 30 April 2015 Ends: 28 April 2019 Value (£): 526,604
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Energy - Nuclear
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Energy
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
10 Mar 2015 UK Korea Civil Nuclear Energy Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
An emerging energy trilemma of energy security, sustainability and affordability, is expected shape the geopolitical and economic landscape of the current century. To address this trilemma, a global expansion of civil nuclear power is underway, providing a reliable source of low carbon base-load electricity, supplied at predictable cost. Sustainable and efficient generation of nuclear energy requires the recycle of nuclear fuel, since only 3% of the material is utilised in common reactor designs. This can only be achieve by developing new materials and processes to enable robust, efficient and safe management of the arising radioactive wastes, which is key, to underpinning public acceptance and reliable cost analysis of civil nuclear power.

Management of technetium and iodine is of particular concern in the recycle of nuclear fuel, since their long half life, high production rate, solubility and bio-accumulation, demands disposition in a robust wasteform, and isolation from the bio-sphere, in a deep geological disposal facility for a ca. 1 million years. Historically, management of Tc and I radionuclides has proven extremely difficult, due to their volatile nature and aqueous solubility, resulting in considerable environmental clean up challenges at Hanford (USA) and Sellafield (UK).

This project will address the management of technetium and iodine in radioactive wastes from nuclear fuel cycles, innovating and developing new materials and processes to safely contain these radionuclides for geological timescales. This challenge is a common need in the civil nuclear power strategies of the UK and Republic of Korea and, therefore, the research will be developed in an integrated and collaborative project, engaging leading researchers from the UK and ROK, each bringing specialist knowledge, capability and skills.

Key Findings
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Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.shef.ac.uk