American Society of Civil Engineers

A Study in Nuclear Decommissioning

by Paul Denault, (Dir., Chemical Decommissioning Services, LN Technologies Corp., 1501 Key Rd., Columbia, SC 29201)

Civil Engineering—ASCE
, Vol. 58, No. 2, February 1988, pp. 74-77

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Document type: Feature Article
Abstract: The Gentilly-1 nuclear power plant two year decommissioning project launched a series of firsts for the nuclear power industry. It was the first commercial sized plant in the world to be decommissioned, and it provided the first opportunity for technicians and researchers to get a number of decommissioning methods, equipment and systems—including an innovative on-site dry fuel storage method—out of R&D labs and into commercial application. When the job was completed in June 1986, it even came in slightly under the projected $25 million budget. The article follows the development of the Gentilly-1 CANDU-BLW plant, a natural uranium fueled, heavy water moderated and boiling light water cooled nuclear power station, from its five year period of design and construction, to its years of problems and intermittent use in the seventies, its shutdown and recent decommissioning project. The decommissioning program included: isolation of the circular post tensioned concrete containment reactor building, as well as the service and turbine buildings; dry storage of the spent fuel in concrete canisters; decontamination of the service building and fuel pool; and removal, disposal and/or storage of all contaminated service building equipment and systems.

ASCE Subject Headings:
Nuclear power