Investigations of high-level radioactive materials and nuclear fuel

The Waste Safety Testing Facility (WASTEF)

◎ Purpose of the facility

  The operation of WASTEF was initiated for the purpose of safety tests on the storage and disposal of high-level radioactive wastes arising from the reprocessing of spent fuel, and the originally planned activities were completed in the fiscal year of 1996.
Subsequently, the hot cells and instruments have been reused for post-irradiation examinations and hot examinations; e.g., hot environmental tests and transuranium (TRU) handling tests have been conducted to provide technical support to various JAEA research programs.

◎ Completion year of construction

1981

◎ Features of the facility

  Material tests and various post-irradiation examinations can be conducted. In particular, hot examination is conducted on various materials under an alpha atmosphere as the cell scale.

◎ Equipment

  The facility was designed for the usage of nuclear fuel materials and radioisotopes include the following:

βγ Concrete cells 3
αγ Concrete cells 2
Lead cell 1
Glove boxes 6

A view of the facility
A view of the facility

Operating room
Operating room

◎ Main Examination Items

Concrete No. 1 cell Sample storage, Fuel cladding fracture toughness tests, Tensile and compression tests
Concrete No. 2 cell Material testing (Slow strain rate tensile (SSRT)/Uniaxial constant load tests), Autoclave tests
Concrete No. 3 cell Test specimen preparation, Dissolution tests, Heating surface corrosion tests, Cladding tube SSRT
Concrete No. 4 cell Leaching test, Size measurement, Heating surface corrosion tests
Concrete No. 5 cell Small-scale molten-solidified production fabrication, TRU compound manufacture examination
Lead cell X-ray diffraction examination
Glove box Chemical treatment, Analysis, Composition analysis, Leaching test
Others Thermodiffusion coefficient measurement, Specific-heat-capacity measurement, Radioactivity measurement, Ultimate analysis, Transmission electron microscope (TEM) observation, Focused ion beam (FIB) machining equipment, Oxide film surface potential measurement examination
Field Emission-type Transmission Electron Microscope
Field Emission-type Transmission Electron Microscope
Focused Ion Beam System
Focused Ion Beam System

The laboratory building No. 4

◎ Purpose of the facility

  Various investigations using nuclear fuel materials and radioisotopes are conducted in this facility.

◎ Completion year of construction

1981 (West building), 1991 (East building)

◎ Features of the facility

  Several types of analyses have been conducted using the following apparatuses:

  • ・Inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer (ICP-MS)
  • ・Inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometer (ICP-AES)
  • ・Ion chromatography (IC)
  • ・Liquid scintillation counter (LSC)
  • ・Gamma-ray spectrometer (Ge semiconductor detector)

  Several types of analyses are also being conducted for the post-accident investigation of the Tokyo Electric Power Company’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident.

◎ Equipment

  The facility was designed for the usage of small amounts of nuclear fuel materials and radioisotopes include the following:

Laboratory rooms 111
Hoods 98
Glove boxes 20
Lead cells 2

A view of the facility
A view of the facility

Hoods
Hoods

The laboratory building No. 1 for the plutonium research program

◎ Purpose of the facility

  This facility focuses on the establishment of handling technology for treating plutonium, and for radiochemical, physicochemical, and analytical chemical research on the physical and chemical properties of plutonium.

◎ Completion year of construction

1961 (with an extension built in 1964)

◎ Features of the facility

  Systematization of oxides, nitrides, and other compounds of actinides can be approached from the viewpoint of their structural, physical, and thermodynamic properties.
Technical experiments can be conducted using heavy elements such as actinides for observation of their physical and chemical behaviors and establishing a measuring methodology for unknown properties.

◎ Equipment

  The facility was designed for the usage of nuclear fuel materials and radioisotopes include the following:

Laboratory rooms 7
Hoods 4
Glove boxes 15

A view of the facility
A view of the facility

Glove boxes
Glove boxes

The experiment building No. 2 for JRR-3

◎ Purpose of the facility

  This facility is designated for analytical chemistry research of samples irradiated in research reactors, and radiochemical analyses related to the operational management of research reactors.

◎ Completion year of construction

1988

◎ Equipment

  The facility was designed for the usage of small amounts of nuclear fuel materials and radioisotopes include the following:

Laboratory rooms 9
Hoods 8

A view of the facility
A view of the facility

Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometer
Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometer

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