Nuclear Decommissioning

Planning, Execution and International Experience

Edited by

  • M Laraia, formerly of International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Austria

Once a nuclear installation has reached the end of its safe and economical operational lifetime, the need for its decommissioning arises. Different strategies can be employed for nuclear decommissioning, based on the evaluation of particular hazards and their attendant risks, as well as on the analysis of costs of clean-up and waste management. This allows for decommissioning either soon after permanent shutdown, or perhaps a long time later, the latter course allowing for radioactivity levels to drop in any activated or contaminated components. It is crucial for clear processes and best practices to be applied in decommissioning such installations and sites, particular where any significant health and environmental risks exist.

This book critically reviews the nuclear decommissioning processes and technologies applicable to nuclear power plants and other civilian nuclear facilities. Part one focuses on the fundamental planning issues in starting a nuclear decommissioning process, from principles and safety regulations, to financing and project management. Part two covers the execution phase of nuclear decommissioning projects, detailing processes and technologies such as dismantling, decontamination, and radioactive waste management, as well as environmental remediation, site clearance and reuse. Finally, part three details international experience in the decommissioning of nuclear applications, including the main nuclear reactor types and nuclear fuel cycle facilities, as well as small nuclear facilities and legacy nuclear waste sites.
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Nuclear power utilities, plant operators and management personnel; plant management personnel; governmental-/regulatory-safety bodies in this field; and academics in this field (from graduate students to research professors).


Book information

  • Published: February 2012
  • Imprint: Woodhead Publishing
  • ISBN: 978-0-85709-115-4


"...designed for young people and future generations in Japan and other countries that have nuclear reactors, as well as the US and Ukraine..which experienced serious nuclear accidents. I expect this book to become the bible in the field of nuclear decommissioning."--International Journal of Environmental Studies, Vol 69, Issue 4 -12

"This book critically reviews the decommissioning and decontamination processes and technologies available for rehabilitating sites used for nuclear power generationā€¦Therefore it is a helpful reference tool for nuclear power operators, nuclear plant managers, engineers, regulators and consultants, as well as researchers and academics in this field."--International Journal for Nuclear Power, April 2014
An unprecedented book covering every technically important decommissioning field, written by international decommissioning leaders., Dr Takeshi Ishikura, Executive Research Fellow, Nuclear Power Engineering Center (NUPEC), The Institute of Applied Energy (IAE), Japan
This book provides an essential framework for all decommissioning key activities, enriched and illustrated by practical case studies. I will keep it within easy reach in my bookshelf., Dr Hans G. Riotte, Head, Radiation Protection and Radioactive Waste Management Division, OECD Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA), France
This excellent book describes the entire process of decommissioning, from planning to management to completion, in a clear and comprehensive manner. I found the detailed examples of successful projects and best practice particularly helpful., Shelly Mobbs, Eden Nuclear and Environment, UK

Table of Contents

Introduction to nuclear decommissioning: Definitions and history. Part 1 Planning: Fundamental issues in starting a nuclear decommissioning process: Overview of nuclear decommissioning principles and approaches; Nuclear decommissioning policy, infrastructure, strategies and project planning; Financing and economics of nuclear facility decommissioning; Characterisation of radioactive materials in redundant nuclear facilities: Key issues for the decommissioning plan; Managing the transition from operation to decommissioning of a nuclear facility; Nuclear decommissioning project organization, management and human resources; Public engagement and stakeholder consultation in nuclear decommissioning projects; Radiological protection in the decommissioning of nuclear facilities: Safety, regulations and licensing; Nuclear facility design and operation to facilitate decommissioning: Lessons learned. Part 2 Execution: Nuclear decommissioning processes and technologies, radioactive waste management, site rehabilitation and cleanup: Safe enclosure and entombment strategies in nuclear decommissioning projects; Dismantling and demolition processes and technologies in nuclear decommissioning projects; Decontamination processes and technologies in nuclear decommissioning projects; Remote operation and robotics technologies in nuclear decommissioning projects; Radioactive waste management in nuclear decommissioning projects; Environmental remediation and restoration technologies in nuclear decommissioning projects; Site clearance and licence termination in nuclear decommissioning projects; Reuse and redevelopment of decommissioned nuclear sites: Strategies and lessons learned. Part 3 International experience: Nuclear decommissioning applications and case studies: Decommissioning of Russian-type water-cooled water-moderated nuclear reactors (WWERs); Decommissioning of gas cooled nuclear reactors (GCRs); Decommissioning of nuclear fuel cycle facilities; Decommissioning of small nuclear facilities: Industrial, medical and research facilities; Decommissioning of legacy nuclear waste sites: Dounreay, UK; Decommissioning of legacy nuclear waste sites: Idaho National Laboratory, USA; Information management for nuclear decommissioning projects.