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Electrometallurgical Techniques for DOE Spent Fuel Treatment: Final Report
The EBR-II demonstration project has shown that the electrometallurgical technique can be used to treat sodium-bonded spent nuclear fuel. The major hurdle that remains is qualification of the waste forms from this processing. The total quantity of EBR-II spent nuclear fuel is relatively small, particularly in comparison to the total DOE spent fuel inventory, so even if qualification of the waste form were to prove impossible, the quantity of these materials that had been produced would be modest. The committee has found no significant technical barriers to the use of electrometallurgical technology to treat EBR-II spent fuel, and EMT therefore represents a potentially viable technology for DOE spent nuclear fuel treatment. However, before using EMT for processing other spent fuels in the DOE inventory, which would generate much larger amounts of these wastes than were produced in ANL’s demonstration project, it would be necessary for these waste forms to receive the acceptance qualification.