Decommissioning, Immobilisation and Storage
soluTIons for NuClear wasTe InVEntories

AGR, Magnox and Exotic Spent Fuels

DISTINCTIVE is a multi-disciplinary collaboration of 10 universities and 3 key industry partners from across the UK’s civil nuclear sector.

Options for Exotic Carbide Fuels.

Options for Exotic Carbide Fuels.


Academic Lead – Bill Lee

Researcher – Claudia Gasparrini

University – Imperial College


The UKs inventory of exotic fuels includes some carbides for which no waste management decision has been made. This project will build on the capability in non-oxide ceramics in the Centre for Advanced Structural Ceramics (CASC) and the Materials in Extreme Environments (XMat) programme grant at Imperial to examine treatment and immobilisation options.

The aim of this project is to get knowledge on the oxidation mechanism of carbides fuels, and develop a suitable oxide wasteform. The carbide fuels studied in the experimental session will be uranium carbide and mixed uranium – plutonium carbide fuels.  The experimental analysis carried out on these materials will suggest a route to oxidise pellets of uranium carbide and mixed uranium – plutonium carbide that were actually stored at the Dounreay site. The stable wasteform obtained from the oxide then needs to be prepared for the disposal and encapsulation. The last goal of this project will be the identification of the best encapsulation and immobilization form for these oxides. Having chosen the most sensible option a modelling project will be developed to underpin its feasibility.

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