Mizunami Underground Research Laboratory

  Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) is engaged in research & development (R&D) related to the geological disposal of High-Level Radioactive Waste (HLW). HLW is the final product after extraction of useful materials from spent nuclear fuel from nuclear power generation, which provides the base load electric generation for Japan's daily needs.
  In the R&D related to geological disposal of HLW, the Tono Geoscience Center (TGC) has been conducting research into deep underground environments (Geoscientific Research). The goal of this research is to establish methodologies and techniques to understand the characteristics of groundwater and the rock mass at various depths.
  Together with results from the Horonobe Underground Research Project in Horonobe-cho, Hokkaido and the R&D of Geological Disposal implemented by the Tokai Research and Development Center, JAEA, the results of the Geoscientific Research will improve the technical reliability of geological disposal and further advance safety assessment standards. This research is also utilized for drawing up a national safety standard and as basic information for the final HLW geological disposal project that will be implemented by the Nuclear Waste Management Organization. (NUMO)

  Regarding Geoscientific Research, the following three research programs are underway in the Tono Geoscience Center ; "Mizunami Underground Research Laboratory (MIU) Project" , "Regional Hydrogeological Study (RHS) Project" and "Research on the Long-Term Stability of the Geological Environment".