Ukraine is leading the world in spent nuclear fuel storage. It is actually not that unusual because the nuclear intellectual base has been in Ukraine as part of the USSR following WWII. many early nuclear reactor experiments took place in the Ukraine and one of those experiments went badly and end up with the Chernobyl accident. History has proven that every accident of any kind has always provided a wealth of information to make things better. Since 1986, the Chernobyl nuclear accident has provide tons of data on all aspects of radiation exposure on humans, animals and plants – the local ecosystem.
Today, there is still a major cleanup effort going on to restore the environment to it’s natural state. Holtec International is a key player of world wide companies in this effort by providing the storage facility for all the spent nuclear fuel left over from the decommissioning of the entire Chernobyl four reactor complex, not just the single reactor meltdown. Holtec-supplied equipment and systems for the country’s soon-to-be-operational Central Spent Fuel Storage Facility (CSFSF) (which is known as the “Consolidated Interim Storage Facility” in the United States) has been validated by the culmination of a successful series of tests at the Rivne Nuclear Power Plant (RNPP) to be implemented in 2020.
The final test involved heavy load handling evolutions demonstrated by handling and maneuvering of the HI-TRAC transfer cask from the rail car to the main reactor hall of RNPP, with final destination to CSFSF. These modern casks developed by Holtec International have two barriers that meet and exceed international requirements on nuclear and radiation safety and are of dual-purpose genre’ as they are designed for both transportation and storage of used fuel. This closed-system will be in used for several years before it is used here in the United States for the HI_STORE CISF site in New Mexico.
“Ukraine’s nuclear power generation is critical to the energy security of the country providing as much as 60% of its power need. It is heartening to observe Energoatom emerge as a world leader in terms of reliability of its nuclear units and management of its used fuel,” said Dr. Kris Singh, President & CEO of Holtec International.