Retour d’expérience du démantèlement d’UP1
Decommissioning of the UP1 Reprocessing Plant
2 AREVA NC (France)
The Marcoule site was the host of the very first electricity-generating nuclear reactors (3 gas-graphite reactors operated between 1956 and 1984) and spent fuel reprocessing plant (UP1 and various ancillaries operated between 1958 and 1997). Those historic facilities, together with the research labs that had contributed to the tuning and commissioning of various processes, are being cleaned-up and dismantled. Close to these nuclear plants are located others facilities which will be shut down in the next few years: Phénix fast breeder reactor, Celestin reactors and others ancillaries.
Concerning the UP1 reprocessing plant and its ancillaries, because these facilities were used for both civil and defence activities, a dedicated group gathering three state and private companies (CEA, EdF and COGEMA) was set up in order to represent the contracting authority. This group operated between 1996 and 2004. Nowadays, CEA is the contracting authority in Marcoule and replaces AREVA NC as the site nuclear operator.
Decommissioning Scenario of Reprocessing Facilities UP1
The UP1 decommissioning operation is composed of two main programs.
The first one concerns the dismantling of the reprocessing plant UP1, separated in tree facilities:
- the Decladding facilities. There is still a lot of waste to evacuate but the most delicate operations are almost finished.
- the reprocessing plant UP1. Dismantling is finished in many rooms but some large tasks remain for which robotized systems will be required, for example: evaporators and dissolvers tanks.
- the storage tanks of fission products (high level liquid radwastes) of the Marcoule vitrification workshop (AVM) are being rinsed using specific liquids. They will allow a better management of waste and will facilitate the dismantling operations.
The second program (RCD program - waste retrieval and packaging) pertains to waste generated in the early days of site operations that have been in storage since then.
Operations began in 2000 with the startup of two facilities for bitumen drum retrieval.
To date, the 6000 bitumen drums stored in the North zone of Marcoule site have been taken again, controlled, reconditioned and transported in a new building (EIP) to be stored there in waiting of the opening, by the ANDRA, of a final discharge system.
A similar operation has begun for the 54,000 bitumen drums stored in Southern zone from the site. This operation is planned to finish in 2025.
Another part of this RCD program deals with all the legacy waste without bitumen.
Between 1997 and 2007, more than 1,350,000 cleaning hours were performed in order to disassemble about 7,300 tons of components and to remove more than 95% of initial radiotoxicity of the UP1 plant.
Nowadays, the end of this project is scheduled for 2040. The CEA industrial partner is AREVA NC, a private company in charge of the operation of the facilities concerned by these programs. Dismantling and waste treatment operations are carried out in the framework of a joint-liability pool of enterprises. For the 2005-2010 period, 1,500,000 hours of cleaning work are planned in order to perform the cleaning and the rinsing of this set of nuclear facilities, and also engineering hours will be necessary to define the scenarios for final decommissioning and RCD program.
© SFEN 2008