ANL's demonstration. The committee's previous report3 was focused on the chemical and electrometallurgical process steps of electrometallurgical technology (EMT) and on ANL's progress in the EBR-II demonstration project. The committee stated in that report that it would defer the part of its charge involving assessment of the waste forms being developed by ANL for disposition of the products of the EMT treatment. This report addresses that aspect of the committee 's overall charge. Over the course of the committee's existence, it has from time to time discussed waste form issues in its reports. The present report discusses these waste forms issues as they relate to the completion of the demonstration project, as well as postdemonstration testing that will be necessary for placement of these waste forms in a geologic repository.

ANL has developed a waste qualification program for its EMT demonstration project that is patterned after the protocols used for the waste qualification of Defense Program high-level waste (DHLW) borosilicate glass.4 The early phases of waste-form acceptance modeling and data collection activities by the EMT program are being conducted to provide quality assurance characterization data during a demonstration project for the EMT process. To support a final waste-acceptance decision, however, major qualification/characterization activities will be necessary beyond the end of the demonstration project.

ANL's demonstration project for the electrometallurgical treatment of SNF produces two waste forms: a metallic waste form (MWF) and a ceramic waste form (CWF). In addition to these two waste forms, a third product stream, metallic uranium, is produced by EMT. At the present time, DOE has made no decisions about the disposition of this material, and it is the committee's understanding that there are no plans for disposing of it as a waste. Consequently, the committee has not attempted to evaluate the suitability of the uranium product as a possible waste form.

PRIOR COMMITTEE FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS ON WASTE FORMS

From its inception, the committee has produced recommendations regarding these waste forms. In a preliminary assessment report,5 the committee noted that ANL was conducting research and development on both the CWF and the MWF. The qualification of the forms would be conducted in accordance with a waste form qualification plan to be issued in fiscal year 1995.

In its first report,6 the committee noted:

3  

National Research Council, Electrometallurgical Techniques for DOE Spent Fuel Treatment: Status Report on Argonne National Laboratory's R&D Activity as of Fall 1998, National Academy Press, Washington, D.C., 1999.

4  

DWPF Waste Acceptance Reference Manual (U), WSRC-IM-93-45, Westinghouse Savannah River Company, Savannah River Site, Aiken, SC, 1993.

5  

National Research Council, A Preliminary Assessment of the Promise of Continued R&D into an Electrometallurgical Approach for Treating DOE Spent Fuel, National Academy Press, Washington, D.C., 1995.

6  

National Research Council, An Assessment of Continued R&D into an Electrometallurgical Approach for Treating DOE Spent Nuclear Fuel, National Academy Press, Washington, D.C., 1995, p. 39.



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