1

Introduction and Background

This report is a summary of a joint symposium held on June 8-10, 2011, by the National Research Council (NRC) of the U.S. National Academies and the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) on progress, challenges, and opportunities for converting United States and Russian Federation (R.F.) research reactors1 from highly enriched uranium (HEU) to low enriched uranium (LEU) fuel.2,3 This symposium was organized in response to a 2010 request from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), National Nuclear Security Administration’s (NNSA) Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation.

NNSA requested that a symposium be organized and a subsequent summary document be produced to address:

•   Recent progress on conversion of research reactors, with a focus on U.S.- and R.F.-origin4 reactors;

________________

1 In this report, the term “research reactors” is defined to include research, test, and training reactors, including critical and subcritical assemblies.

2 By international agreement, HEU is defined as uranium enriched to a concentration of 20 percent uranium-235 or greater, whereas LEU is defined to be uranium enriched to a concentration of less than 20 percent uranium-235.

3 This symposium focused on HEU-fueled reactors; however, some research reactors are also fueled with plutonium. The challenges of managing plutonium-fueled reactors—which will need to be accomplished through materials protection, control, and accounting measures—are mentioned in this report but were not the focus of this symposium.

4 The terms “origin,” “supplied,” and “designed” are used interchangeably in this report to describe reactors that were developed by the United States and Russia for both domestic and third-country use.



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1 Introduction and Background T his report is a summary of a joint symposium held on June 8-10, 2011, by the National Research Council (NRC) of the U.S. National Acad- emies and the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) on progress, chal- lenges, and opportunities for converting United States and Russian Federation (R.F.) research reactors1 from highly enriched uranium (HEU) to low enriched uranium (LEU) fuel.2,3 This symposium was organized in response to a 2010 request from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), National Nuclear Secu- rity Administration’s (NNSA) Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation. NNSA requested that a symposium be organized and a subsequent summary document be produced to address: • Recent progress on conversion of research reactors, with a focus on U.S.- and R.F.-origin4 reactors; 1 In this report, the term “research reactors” is defined to include research, test, and training reactors, including critical and subcritical assemblies. 2 By international agreement, HEU is defined as uranium enriched to a concentration of 20 percent uranium-235 or greater, whereas LEU is defined to be uranium enriched to a concentration of less than 20 percent uranium-235. 3 This symposium focused on HEU-fueled reactors; however, some research reactors are also fueled with plutonium. The challenges of managing plutonium-fueled reactors—which will need to be accomplished through materials protection, control, and accounting measures—are mentioned in this report but were not the focus of this symposium. 4 The terms “origin,” “supplied,” and “designed” are used interchangeably in this report to describe reactors that were developed by the United States and Russia for both domestic and third-country use. 3

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4 CONVERTING U.S. AND RUSSIAN RESEARCH REACTORS • Lessons learned for overcoming conversion challenges, increasing the effectiveness of research reactor use, and enabling new reactor missions; • Future research reactor conversion plans, challenges, and opportu- nities; and • Actions that could be taken by U.S. and Russian organizations to promote conversion. The statement of task for the project is included as Appendix C. The preparation of the symposium agenda and the production of this summary report were carried out by a committee of U.S. experts appointed by the National Academies and a committee of Russian experts appointed by the Russian Academy of Sciences. Biographical sketches of the commit- tee members are provided in Appendix B. These organizing committees met jointly three times over the course of the project: First, in November 2010 to plan the symposium; second, in June 2011 to hold the symposium; and third, in September 2011 to finalize the symposium report. The agenda for the symposium is provided in Appendix A, along with a list of briefings presented at the November 2010 meeting. NNSA and the NRC agreed that the symposium would not produce consensus findings or conclusions but would instead be used to encourage discussion among U.S. and Russian participants. For this reason, this sym- posium summary does not contain findings, conclusions, or recommenda- tions and does not represent a consensus of symposium participants.5 This report represents a summary record of the briefings and discussions that occurred during the symposium. Although the U.S. and Russian organiz- ing committees are responsible for the content of this report, any views contained in the report are not necessarily those of these committees, the National Academies, or the Russian Academy of Sciences. The remainder of the chapter provides background information on pro- liferation risks associated with civilian use of HEU; basic operating principles and terminology associated with research reactors; and potential impacts of reducing HEU use in research reactors. Much of the content of this discus- sion is drawn from symposium briefings (Adelfang, 2011; Arkhangelsky, 2011; D’Agostino, 2011; Dragunov, 2011; Matos, 2011; Roglans, 2011a). Additionally, some basic concepts and definitions were added for the benefit of non-expert readers. 5 Important statements of opinion are attributed to individual workshop participants where appropriate, but no attempt has been made to attribute statements of fact.

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5 INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND PROLIFERATION AND CIVILIAN TRADE IN HEU The availability of HEU—particularly in the civilian sector—is a sig- nificant proliferation and security concern. In 2001, the U.S. National Research Council stated in its report, Making the Nation Safer, that “(t)he primary impediment that prevents countries or technically competent ter- rorist groups from developing nuclear weapons is the [lack of] availabil- ity of special nuclear material (SNM),6 especially HEU” (NRC, 2001). The availability of HEU in the civilian sector—as opposed to the military sector—is of particular concern, because resources may not be available or used to protect the material adequately during storage or transport. If HEU is available, either stolen or purchased, it is plausible that a nuclear weapon could be built by either a state or a non-state actor.7 The technical barriers to constructing such a weapon are not impassably high. As Pablo Adelfang of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) noted during the symposium (Adelfang, 2011), individuals with a basic knowledge of physics and machining could build a functioning bomb from stolen HEU. This is largely because HEU is only weakly radioactive—mak- ing it relatively easy to handle—and because such a device would not re- quire explosive testing to be assured of some yield. In the civilian sector, HEU is primarily used to fuel research reactors and produce radioisotopes for use in medical procedures. The stockpiles of HEU held for these purposes and others are significant. At the end of 2003, the estimated global stockpile of HEU (both civilian and military) was around 1,900 metric tons. Although the vast majority of this HEU is under military control, about 175 metric tons is civilian HEU (ISIS, 2005). This quantity of HEU is sufficient to fabricate about 3,500 nuclear weapons.8 The vast majority of this civilian HEU is located in the United States (124 metric tons) and in Russia (15-30 metric tons) (ISIS, 2005). The potential proliferation risk associated with the use of HEU-fueled research reactors—the focus of the symposium and this summary report— arises from the need to transport and store both unirradiated and irradi- 6 “The term ‘special nuclear material’ means plutonium, uranium enriched in the isotope 233 or in the isotope 235, and any other material that the [Nuclear Regulatory] Commission … determines to be special nuclear material.” (42 U.S.C. § 2014) 7 Although LEU could, in principle, be enriched and converted into HEU for use in building a nuclear weapon, this process would require a significant technical infrastructure, and the mass of LEU required would be very large. The international community could track an effort to enrich LEU more effectively than one involving the theft of HEU. 8 Assuming 50 kilograms of HEU per explosive device. This may be a conservative as- sumption. The IAEA defines the siqnificant quantitity of HEU to be 25 kilograms. Significant quantity is defined as “the approximate amount of nuclear material for which the possibility of manufacturing a nuclear explosive device cannot be excluded” (IAEA, 2001).

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6 CONVERTING U.S. AND RUSSIAN RESEARCH REACTORS ated9 HEU fuel. This fuel must be protected at all times and is potentially vulnerable to theft while in transit, including across national borders. Proliferation risk exists even in nuclear weapons states. It is possible to replace HEU in many civilian applications with LEU, which is considered to have a lower proliferation risk because it is not suit- able for use in a nuclear device. Such replacements are possible using cur- rent technologies or technologies that are under development. For example, in 2009, the NRC found that the HEU targets used for the large-scale pro- duction of the medical isotope molybdenum-99 could be replaced by LEU targets (NRC, 2009). Similarly, many existing research reactors can operate using LEU fuel rather than HEU fuel (see Chapters 2 and 3 of this report). In fact, as discussed elsewhere in this report, many reactors have been suc- cessfully converted from HEU to LEU fuel, and many other conversions are under way. The continuation of this trend could significantly reduce the proliferation risk associated with the civilian trade in HEU. As will be discussed in the next section, 40 percent of the world’s op- erating research reactors are located in the United States and Russia, and nearly all of the world’s research reactors are fueled with either U.S.- or R.F.-origin fuel. For these reasons among others, the United States and Russia combined have significant influence on the nature and extent of the worldwide trade in civilian HEU. RESEARCH REACTORS Following U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower’s 1953 Atoms for Peace speech to the United Nations (Eisenhower, 1953), the U.S. and Russia exported research reactors to about 40 countries. At present, the IAEA lists 254 operational research reactors in 55 countries (Adelfang, 2011; see Figure 1-1). According to the IAEA, 75 civilian research reactors (excluding defense and icebreaker reactors) are currently operating using HEU fuel (see Figure 1-2). Nearly all HEU-fueled research reactors are supplied with HEU of U.S. or Russian origin, with the exception of a very few that are supplied with Chinese-origin HEU. About 25 percent of all research reactors are located in developing countries, including Bangladesh, Algeria, Colombia, Ghana, Jamaica, Libya, Thailand, and Vietnam.10 Civilian research reactors are used for a wide variety of missions, for example, to perform research in a broad range of scientific and engineer- 9 Much research reactor used fuel is not considered to be “self-protecting” (formally defined as producing a dose rate greater than 100 rad per hour at 1 meter in air) because of its low radioactivity. However, irradiated fuel from virtually all of the high-performance reactors mentioned in this report would be considered to be self-protecting, as would irradiated fuel from commercial power reactors, for a period following removal from the reactor. 10 www-naweb.iaea.org/napc/physics/ACTIVITIES/Research_Reactors_Worldwide.htm.

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7 INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND Decommissioned Shut Down 202 211 Planned 2 Under Construction 3 Total = 672 Research Reactors Operational 254 FIGURE 1-1 Research reactors of the world. More than 670 research reactors have been constructed. At present, fewer than half (254 reactors) are operational. SOURCE: Adelfang (2011). Shut Down Before Defence Reactors Conversion 19 and Icebreakers Converted to LEU Operating with HEU and Shutdown 12 50 Fully Converted to LEU and Operational 40 Operational Reactors Partially Converted Running on HEU 75 and Operational 6 FIGURE 1-2 HEU-fueled research reactors of the world. At present, 75 civilian research reactors are operated using HEU fuel; the remainder have been converted to LEU fuel and/or shut down. SOURCE: Adelfang (2011); data as of 2009.

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8 CONVERTING U.S. AND RUSSIAN RESEARCH REACTORS ing disciplines, including research related to nuclear engineering, nuclear physics and chemistry, materials science, and biology. In addition, research reactors have become indispensible for the production of medical isotopes for diagnostic and therapeutic procedures and are also used for industrial purposes such as silicon doping. Research reactors’ key missions require them to be designed differ- ently from commercial power reactors. Most notably, research reactors are typically designed to produce higher thermal neutron fluxes at much lower thermal outputs than power reactors. Most research reactors are also physi- cally much smaller than power reactors (typically having core volumes of less than a cubic meter versus tens of cubic meters) and require far less fuel (typically a few kilograms versus thousands of kilograms). Research reactors have a broad range of designs in terms of power levels, moderators,11 fuel types, and cooling systems, among other design features. In many cases, these reactors are one-of-a-kind or few-of-a-kind, complicating efforts to convert them to LEU fuel. For illustrative purposes, one common broad category of research reactor—the pool- or tank-type water-moderated reactor—is described in the following paragraphs. A broad range of other designs exist, including fast research reactors, which require no moderator and use plutonium as fuel, and “homogeneous reac- tors,” in which the reactor core is a solution of dissolved uranium salts contained in a tank. Pool-type or tank-type research reactors (see Figure 1-3) comprise a cluster of fuel assemblies and control rods12 in a pool or tank of water, which serves as both a moderator and a coolant.13 The core is often sur- rounded by graphite, beryllium, or heavy water (the “reflector”) that is used to slow down (moderate) neutrons and reflect them into the core to maximize the neutron flux. The core and reflector typically contain empty channels for irradiation of targets and test materials, and some reactors are designed with apertures in their pool or tank walls through which neutron beams can be accessed. Figures showing the core configurations for a num- ber of different research reactors can be found in Chapters 2 and 3. Fuel assemblies (also referred to as “fuel elements”) contain the ura- nium fuel that powers the reactor. A fuel assembly is comprised of indi- vidual fuel plates, tubes, or rods, the latter of which is also referred to as 11A moderator is a material used to slow down neutrons (i.e., reduce their kinetic energies), which increases the probability of fission when the neutrons are captured by uranium nuclei. Light materials such as water and graphite are commonly used as moderators. 12 Control rods contain materials (e.g., boron) that absorb neutrons; they are used to control fission rates in the reactor fuel and hence the power levels in the reactor. 13 Tank-type research reactors are similar to pool-type reactors in overall design, but they typically operate at higher power densities, requiring higher coolant flows and pressures, making it necessary to separate the coolant from the remainder of the pool contents.

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9 INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND FIGURE 1-3 Pool-type research reactor. This photo shows the core of the Ford Figure 1-3.eps Nuclear Reactor at the University of Michigan, the first reactor converted to use LEU fuel under the U.S. Reduced Enrichment for Research and Test Reactors pro- bitmap gram. The conversion was completed in 1984. The reactor was shut down in 2003 and subsequently decommissioned. SOURCE: Michigan Memorial Phoenix Project.

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10 CONVERTING U.S. AND RUSSIAN RESEARCH REACTORS “pins.” Each fuel plate or tube consists of the uranium fuel itself (the “fuel meat”) sealed in a “cladding” most typically constructed of aluminum. The number of fuel plates or tubes in an individual fuel assembly can vary widely. For example, a Russian MIR.M1 fuel assembly contains four tubes, whereas the outer fuel assembly of the U.S. High Flux Isotope Reactor contains 369 plates. An illustration of a Russian IRT-4M fuel assembly is shown in Figure 1-4. Plate-type and TRIGA pin-type fuel is most commonly used in pool- and tank-type research reactors of U.S. origin, whereas tubular or pin-type fuel is used in Russian-origin reactors. Different fuel production methods— rolling in the United States and extrusion in Russia—are used as well. RESEARCH REACTOR CONVERSION The United States and the Russian Federation have had active efforts to convert research reactors from HEU fuel to LEU fuel for more than 30 years. The history of these conversion efforts is outlined in the following section, followed by a brief discussion of the current state of research reac- tor conversion efforts in both countries. History of Research Reactor Conversion Efforts The first U.S.- and Soviet-supplied research reactors, which were con- structed beginning in the 1950s, were designed to operate on LEU fuel. During the 1960s and 1970s, power upgrades14 in U.S.-supplied reactors required increased uranium-235 element loadings to reduce fuel consump- tion and contain fuel fabrication costs. HEU fuel enriched to 93 percent uranium-235 became standard in these reactors. During the same time period, power upgrades in Soviet-supplied research reactors also required increased uranium-235 element loadings; HEU fuel enriched to 80 to 90 percent uranium-235 became standard in these reactors (Arkhangelsky, 2011). However, in the 1970s, concerns in both the United States and Soviet Union about potential links between the civilian trade in HEU and nuclear proliferation began to increase following a nuclear weapons test in India, unsafeguarded nuclear activities in other countries, and growing terror- ist activities around the world. In 1978, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) established the Reduced Enrichment for Research and Test Reac- tors (RERTR) program to develop technologies to minimize and eventually 14 Power upgrades of U.S.- and Soviet-supplied research reactors were undertaken to in- crease neutron fluxes in experimental positions.

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11 INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND FIGURE 1-4 Illustrations of the Russian IRT-4M fuel assembly. A partial cutaway of a complete fuel assembly is shown on the left. A cutaway view of the fuel assem- bly (right top) reveals the individual fuel tubes; a cross-section of the fuel assembly Figure 1-4.eps bitmap (bottom right) shows the nested tubes. SOURCE: Cherepnin (2011). eliminate the civilian use of highly enriched uranium.15 At present, all of DOE’s HEU elimination efforts for civilian research and test reactors16 are 15 More information about this program can be found at www.rertr.anl.gov. 16 Research, test, and training reactors that have military or national security missions are outside the scope of DOE’s conversion program.

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12 CONVERTING U.S. AND RUSSIAN RESEARCH REACTORS currently being carried out under the Global Threat Reduction Initiative (GTRI), into which RERTR was absorbed in May 2004.17 Also around 1978, the U.S.S.R. Ministry of Atomic Energy initiated a similar program, the Russian Program of Reducing of Enrichment in Research Reactors (RPRERR), to reduce the enrichment of fuel for re- search reactors in its client states from 80-90 percent enriched uranium to 36 percent enriched uranium. At this time, the U.S.S.R. began work on high-density LEU research reactor fuels for use in foreign research reactors operating with Soviet fuel (Arkhangelsky, 2011). However, there was no contact or collaboration between these U.S. and Soviet conversion pro- grams until 1993. The first formal contact to discuss collaboration on research reactor conversions took place in Moscow in March 1993. At that meeting it was decided to initiate a contract between Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) and the Dollezhal Scientific Research and Design Institute of Energy Tech- nologies (NIKIET) on conversion studies and fuel development. Following these interactions, the Russian program began to develop fuel with a less than 20 percent enrichment based on uranium dioxide fuel for the conver- sion of foreign research reactors.18 Significant progress has been made to convert HEU-fueled research and test reactors around the world. As of June 2011, a total of 74 research reactors have been converted from HEU fuel to LEU fuel or shut down since 1978. Of these, 35 have been converted or shut down since 2004, including seven U.S. domestic conversions; 18 foreign conversions; and 10 domestic and foreign shutdowns prior to conversion (Chamberlin, 2010; Roglans, 2011b). At present, the United States and Russia are cooperating on the conver- sion of U.S.- and Russian-designed reactors in other countries. The February 2005 Joint Statement by President George W. Bush and President Vladimir V. Putin on nuclear security cooperation affirmed this cooperation: The United States and Russia will continue to work jointly to develop low-enriched uranium fuel for use in any U.S.- and Russian-design research reactors in third countries now using high-enriched uranium fuel, and to return fresh and spent high-enriched uranium from U.S.- and Russian- design research reactors in third countries. (Bush-Putin, 2005) 17 DOE and GTRI assist reactor operators to perform feasibility studies and safety analyses required for regulatory approval to convert and procure LEU replacement fuels. GTRI also funds work to develop and qualify higher-density uranium-molybdenum (UMo) LEU fuel to convert high-performance research reactors (see Chapter 2). 18 In 1996 the Bochvar All-Russian Research Institute of Inorganic Materials (VNIINM) became the lead Russian institute under the contract with ANL.

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13 INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND This cooperation was reaffirmed and expanded by U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev in a July 2009 joint state- ment (Obama-Medvedev, 2009). To implement the Obama-Medvedev Joint Statement, Rosatom Director General Sergey Kiriyenko and DOE Deputy Secretary Daniel Poneman signed an agreement during their December 6-7, 2010, meeting to begin studies to determine the technical feasibility and economic impact of converting six HEU-fueled research reactors in Russia (Arkhangelsky, 2011; D’Agostino, 2011). Current Conversion Status of U.S. and Russian Research Reactors There were 34 civilian research reactors in operation in the United States in 2011 (Table 1-1)19 As of June 2011, all but 8 of these reactors had been converted to LEU fuel. Two of these 8 reactors20 appear to be convert- ible using current-type LEU fuels. DOE is completing studies to confirm the feasibility of converting these reactors using current-type LEU fuels. Additional research will be required to more fully develop the capability to fabricate these LEU fuels. However, the following six reactors (including one critical assembly21) comprise what DOE refers to as “high-performance” reactors that pose many challenges for conversion, as discussed in more detail in Chapters 2 and 3: • Advanced Test Reactor (ATR) at the Idaho National Laboratory • The ATRC critical assembly associated with the ATR • High-Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR) at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Oak Ridge, Tennessee • Massachusetts Institute of Technology Reactor (MITR) in Cambridge • Missouri University Research Reactor (MURR) in Columbia • National Bureau of Standards Reactor (NBSR) at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Germantown, Maryland New high-density LEU fuels are now under development to convert these reactors (Roglans, 2011a). These fuel development efforts are described in Chapter 2. 19 These reactors are regulated by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission or the U.S. Department of Energy. 20 The NTR General Electric Reactor in California and the Idaho National Laboratory’s TREAT reactor (Roglans, 2011b). 21 A critical assembly contains sufficient fissionable and moderator material to sustain a fission chain reaction at a low (close to zero) level. It is designed so that fissionable and moderator materials can be easily rearranged in various geometries to mock up different reactor designs.

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14 CONVERTING U.S. AND RUSSIAN RESEARCH REACTORS TABLE 1-1 Civilian Research Reactors in Operation in the United States in 2011 Peak Steady-State Institution, Thermal Power Thermal Flux Date of (n/cm2-s) Reactor Location (kW) Commission 1.0 × 1013 AFRRI,a AFRI TRIGA* 1,000 1/1/1962 Bethesda, MD 2.5 × 108 AGN-201* Idaho State 0.005 1/1/1967 Univ., Pocatello 2.5 × 108 AGN-201* Univ. of New 0.005 10/1/1966 Mexico, Albuquerque 2.0 × 108 AGN-201* Texas A&M 0.005 1/1/1957 Univ., College Station 3.0 × 1013 ARRR* Aerotest, San 250 7/9/1964 Ramon, CA 8.5 × 1014 ATR Idaho 250,000 7/2/1967 National Laboratory, Idaho Falls 5.0 × 1012 DOW Dow 300 7/6/1967 TRIGA* Chemical, Midland, MI 3.0 × 1013 USGS,b GSTR* 1,000 2/26/1969 Denver, CO 2.5 × 1015 ORNL,c Oak HFIR 85,000 8/1/1965 Ridge, TN 1.0 × 1013 KSU TRIGA Kansas 250 10/16/1962 MK II* State Univ., Manhattan 7.0 × 1013 MITR-II Mass. Inst. of 6,000 7/21/1958 Technology, Cambridge, MA 6.0 × 1014 MURR Univ. of 10,000 10/13/1966 Missouri, Columbia 3.0 × 1012 MUTR* Univ. of 250 12/1/1960 Maryland, College Park

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15 INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND TABLE 1-1 Continued Peak Steady-State Institution, Thermal Power Thermal Flux Date of (n/cm2-s) Reactor Location (kW) Commission 4.0 × 1014 NIST,d NBSR 20,000 12/7/1967 Gaithersburg, MD 2.0 × 1013 NSCR* Texas A&M 1,000 1/1/1962 Univ., College Station 2.5 × 1012 NTR General GE, Sunol, CA 100 11/15/1957 Electric 1.5 × 1013 OSURR* Ohio State 500 3/16/1961 Univ., Columbus 1.0 × 1013 OSTR* Oregon State 1,100 3/8/1967 Univ., Covallis 3.3 × 1013 PSBR* Penn State, 1,000 8/15/1955 University Park 1.1 × 1013 PULSTAR* North 1,000 1/1/1972 Carolina State Univ., Raleigh 2.1 × 1010 PUR-1* Purdue 1 1/1/1962 Univ., West Lafayette, IN 2.0 × 1013 RINSC* Rhode Island 2,000 7/28/1964 Atomic Energy Commission, Narrangansett 1.0 × 1013 RRF* Reed College, 250 7/2/1968 Portland, OR 5.0 × 1012 TREAT Idaho 250 10/12/1977 National Laboratory, Idaho Falls 2.0 × 1012 TRIGA Univ. Univ. of 100 12/6/1958 of AZ* Arizona, Tucson 4.5 × 1012 TRIGA Univ. University 100 10/25/1975 UT* of Utah, Salt Lake City continued

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16 CONVERTING U.S. AND RUSSIAN RESEARCH REACTORS TABLE 1-1 Continued Peak Steady-State Institution, Thermal Power Thermal Flux Date of (n/cm2-s) Reactor Location (kW) Commission 2.7 × 1013 TRIGA II* Univ. of Texas, 1,100 3/12/1992 Austin 3.0 × 1013 UC Davis* Univ. of 2,000 1/20/1990 California, Davis 5.0 × 1012 UCI* Univ. of 250 11/25/1969 California, Irvine 2.0 × 1012 UFTR* Univ. of 100 5/28/1959 Florida, Gainesville 1.4 × 1013 UMLR* Univ. of Mass., 1,000 1/2/1975 Lowell 2.0 × 1012 UMRR* Univ. of 200 12/11/1961 Missouri, Rolla 3.2 × 1013 UWNR* Univ. of 1,000 3/26/1961 Wisconsin, Madison 7.0 × 1012 WSUR* Washington 1,000 3/13/1961 State Univ., Pullman NOTES: *Currently operating with LEU fuel. a Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute. b U.S. Geological Survey. c Oak Ridge National Laboratory. d National Institute of Standards and Technology. There were 24 operating research reactors, 30 critical assemblies, and 12 subcritical assemblies in the Russian Federation in 2011 (Bezzubtsev, 2011; see Figure 2-10 in Chapter 2).22 Basic information on currently operating Russian research reactors is given in Table 1-2. Several civil- ian reactors pose substantive technical challenges to conversion, such as reactors using fuel pins consisting of UO2 dispersed in a copper-beryllium matrix with stainless steel cladding designed to operate at significantly higher fuel temperatures than most research reactors. 22 Not including naval or other defense-related reactors.

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17 INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND TABLE 1-2 Russian Research Reactors in Operation in 2011 Peak Steady-State Institution, Thermal Power Thermal Flux Date of (n/cm2-s) Reactor Location (kW) Commission 4.0 × 1011 Argus Kurchatov, 20 12/1/1981 Moscow 2.0 × 1014 RIAR,a BOR-60 60,000 12/1/1969 Dmitrovgrad 6.0 × 109 F-1 Kurchatov, 24 12/25/1946 Moscow 9.0 × 1011 Gamma Kurchatov, 125 1/4/1982 Moscow 2.2 × 1010 Hydra Kurchatov, 10 1/1/1972 Moscow 1.0 × 1013 JINR,b Dunba IBR-2M 20,000 11/30/1977 Pulsed R 2.5 × 1010 IGRIK Minatom, 30 12/15/1975 Chelyabinsk 1.5 × 1014 IR-8 Kurchatov, 8,000 8/12/1981 Moscow 1.7 × 1012 NIKIET,c IR-50 50 2/20/1961 Moscow 4.8 × 1013 MEPhI,d IRT 2,500 5/26/1967 Moscow 1.1 × 1014 IRT-T Tomsk 6,000 7/22/1967 Polytechnic Institute 8.0 × 1013 IRV-2M Res. Inst. 4,000 1/1/1974 of Scientific Instruments, Lytkarino 5.0 × 1014 IVV-2M Inst. of Nuclear 15,000 4/22/1966 Mat., Zarechny 5.0 × 1014 MIR.M1 RIAR, 100,000 12/26/1966 Dmitrovgrad 8.4 × 1012 OP-M Kurchatov, 300 12/1/1989 Moscow 4.0 × 1015 PIK Petersburg 100,000 Under Nuclear Physics construction Institute continued

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18 CONVERTING U.S. AND RUSSIAN RESEARCH REACTORS TABLE 1-2 Continued Peak Steady-State Institution, Thermal Power Thermal Flux Date of (n/cm2-s) Reactor Location (kW) Commission 2.2 × 1014 RBT-6 RIAR, 6,000 1/10/1975 Dmitrovgrad 1.6 × 1013 RBT-10/2 RIAR, 7,000 11/24/1983 Dmitrovgrad 5.0 × 1015 SM-3 RIAR, 100,000 1/10/1961 Dmitrovgrad U-3 Krylov 50 12/13/1964 Shipbuilding Research Institute, St. Petersburg YAGUAR Minatom, 10 6/29/1990 Chelyabinsk 1.5 × 1014 WWR-M Petersburg 18,000 12/29/1959 Nuclear Physics Institute 1.0 × 1014 WWR-TS Karpov, 15,000 11/4/1964 Obninsk Note: This table does not include critical assemblies. a Research Institute for Atomic Reactors. b Joint Institute for Nuclear Research. c Dollezhal Scientific Research and Design Institute of Energy Technologies. d Moscow Engineering Physics Institute. SOURCE: IAEA (2011). REPORT ROADMAP The symposium featured a range of briefings from R.F., U.S., and in- ternational experts on policy, science, and engineering issues relevant to the conversion of research reactors from HEU fuel to LEU fuel. These briefings were organized into several sessions, reflected in the four chapters of this report: • Chapter 1 (this chapter) provides the context for this study and introductory material from the symposium; • Chapter 2 addresses challenges associated with conversion as well as potential solutions;

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19 INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND • Chapter 3 addresses the challenges and successes associated with converting eight specific U.S. and Russian reactors; and • Chapter 4 addresses future research directions and opportunities, including opportunities for further interaction between the U.S. and Russia on research reactor conversion. REFERENCES Adelfang, P. 2011. Reduction of Commercial Traffic in HEU. Presentation to the Research Reactor Conversion Symposium. June 8. Arkhangelsky, N.V. 2011. Problems of the Research Reactors Conversion from HEU to LEU: History and Perspectives. Presentation to the Research Reactor Conversion Symposium. June 8. Bezzubtsev, V. 2011. Regulating Safe Operation of Russian Research Reactors. Presentation to the Research Reactor Conversion Symposium. June 9. Bush-Putin. 2005. Joint Statement on Nuclear Security. October. Available at moscow. usembassy.gov/transcripts_photo_bio/joint-statement-by-president-george-w.-bush-and- president-vladimir-v.-putin-on-nuclear-security-cooperation-bratislava-february-24-2005. Chamberlin, J. 2010. Global Threat Reduction Initiative: Reactor Conversion Program. Pre- sentation to the Research Reactor Conversion Committee. November 29. Cherepnin, Yu. 2011. Experience of Resolving the Problems Rising in Conversion of Research Reactors. Presentation to the Research Reactor Conversion Symposium. June 9. D’Agostino, T. 2011. Remarks on HEU Minimization. Presentation to the Research Reactor Conversion Symposium. June 8. Dragunov, Y.G. 2011. Types, Problems and Conversion Potential of Reactors Produced in Russia. Presentation to the Research Reactor Conversion Symposium. June 8. Eisenhower, D. 1953. Atoms for Peace Speech to United Nations. Available at www.iaea.org/ About/history_speech.html IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency). 2001. IAEA Safeguards Glossary, 2001 Edition. International Nuclear Verification Series No. 3, Vienna, Austria, International Atomic Energy Agency. Available at www-pub.iaea.org/MTCD/publications/PDF/nvs-3-cd/PDF/ NVS3_prn.pdf. IAEA. 2011. Database of World Research Reactors. nucleus.iaea.org/RRDB. ISIS (Institute for Science and International Security). 2005. Global Stocks of Nuclear Explosive Material. Available at isis-online.org/isis-reports/detail/global-stocks-of-nuclear-explosive- materials/17. Matos, J. 2011. Experience with Solutions to Conversion Challenges for U.S.-Supplied Re- search Reactors. Presentation to the Research Reactor Conversion Symposium. June 8. NRC (National Research Council). 2001. Making the Nation Safer. Washington, DC: National Academy Press. NRC. 2009. Medical Isotope Production without Highly Enriched Uranium. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. Obama-Medvedev. 2009. Joint Statement on Nuclear Cooperation. July 6. Available at www. whitehouse.gov/the_press_office/Joint-Statement-by-President-Barack-Obama-of-the- United-States-of-America-and-President-Dmitry-Medvedev-of-the-Russian-Federation- on-Nuclear-Cooperation/. Roglans, J. 2011a. Maintaining Performance and Missions. Presentation to the Research Reac- tor Conversion Symposium. June 9. Roglans, J. 2011b. Private communication with committee members on research reactor inventories, September 2.

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