National Academies Press: OpenBook
« Previous: Purpose
Suggested Citation:"Scope." National Research Council. 1959. Considerations on the Disposal of Radioactive Wastes From Nuclear-Powered Ships Into the Marine Environment. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/18744.
Page 1

Below is the uncorrected machine-read text of this chapter, intended to provide our own search engines and external engines with highly rich, chapter-representative searchable text of each book. Because it is UNCORRECTED material, please consider the following text as a useful but insufficient proxy for the authoritative book pages.

CONSIDERATIONS ON THE DISPOSAL OF RADIOACTIVE WASTES FROM NUCLEAR-POWERED SHIPS INTO THE MARINE ENVIRONMENT PURPOSE An unavoidable consequence of the operation of any fission reactor, whether located on land or aboard a nuclear-powered ship, is the pro- duction of unwanted radioactive wastes. The two general methods of treating these wastes are: (1) containment, coupled with isolation from man's environment; and (2) dispersion, so that the probability of return to man is extremely small. In some cases complete containment and isolation are not technically feasible. In other cases such containment and isolation are conceivably feasible, but at high cost. The purpose of this report is to provide an evaluation of the po- tential capacity of the marine environment to receive certain radioactive wastes originating from normal operations of nuclear-powered ships. Basically, this report is an evaluation of the potential risks involved in utilizing the marine environment in dispersion of these wastes so that the probability of return to any segment of the human population would be small. The conclusions of this working panel can then be employed in weighing these risks against the costs and the risks of alternate methods of waste treatment. Such a comparative evaluation can finally be utilized in the formulation of design criteria and operating doctrine for nuclear-powered ships. SCOPE Our considerations have been limited to the marine environment. No conclusions are reached concerning the safety of operating nuclear- powered ships in tideless, fresh water bodies. We would assume that before any nuclear-powered ship operated on such waterways, special consideration would be given to the problems peculiar to that environ- ment by scientists competent in physical, chemical, and biological lim- nology. Separate evaluations are made for (a) the inshore area, including harbors and estuaries; (b) the coastal area, which is here considered as the area between 2 miles and 12 miles offshore; (c) the outer continental shelf, which is here considered as the area seaward of a line 12 miles from shore and extending to the 200 fathom depth contour; and (d) the open sea, here considered as those oceanic areas more than 12 miles from shore with depths exceeding 200 fathoms.

Next: Brief Description of a Nuclear Ship Reactor and Its Operation »
Considerations on the Disposal of Radioactive Wastes From Nuclear-Powered Ships Into the Marine Environment Get This Book
MyNAP members save 10% online.
Login or Register to save!
Download Free PDF
  1. ×

    Welcome to OpenBook!

    You're looking at OpenBook,'s online reading room since 1999. Based on feedback from you, our users, we've made some improvements that make it easier than ever to read thousands of publications on our website.

    Do you want to take a quick tour of the OpenBook's features?

    No Thanks Take a Tour »
  2. ×

    Show this book's table of contents, where you can jump to any chapter by name.

    « Back Next »
  3. ×

    ...or use these buttons to go back to the previous chapter or skip to the next one.

    « Back Next »
  4. ×

    Jump up to the previous page or down to the next one. Also, you can type in a page number and press Enter to go directly to that page in the book.

    « Back Next »
  5. ×

    To search the entire text of this book, type in your search term here and press Enter.

    « Back Next »
  6. ×

    Share a link to this book page on your preferred social network or via email.

    « Back Next »
  7. ×

    View our suggested citation for this chapter.

    « Back Next »
  8. ×

    Ready to take your reading offline? Click here to buy this book in print or download it as a free PDF, if available.

    « Back Next »
Stay Connected!