Nuclear Fuel Cycle and Materials

Spent Fuel Management

SPAR-III - Coordinated Research Project on Spent Fuel Performance Assessment and Research (CRP-T13013)

SPAR III is a continuation of the SPAR II CRP dealing with research of spent fuel and storage materials behaviour over long term spent fuel storage (100 years and potentially more). Programs carried out so far (BEFAST, SPAR I and II) have identified some potential deterioration mechanisms of spent fuel elements that required detailed investigation. Investigations of these mechanisms indicate unlikely impact of most of them on spent fuel integrity over storage periods.

There are still impacts of some deterioration mechanisms that have to be investigated over long time periods (i.e. hydrogen effects on fuel elements) and countries that participated in SPAR II continue this research. In addition, behaviour and impact on these mechanisms under transportation and some extreme conditions need to be investigated. Surveillance and monitoring results of spent fuel in storage are important inputs in assessing spent fuel performance in storage. The long term objective of spent fuel integrity is to keep all future spent fuel management options open.

SPAR III is scheduled to last for four years (6.11.2009-6.11.2014). The first RCM was held in Tokyo, Japan 8.-12.11.2010, RCM2 was held Charlotte, U.S.A. 14-18.5.2012, RCM3 is due to be held Pusan, Republic of Korea, 4-8.11.2013:

Specific Research Objectives

  • Fuel and materials performance evaluation under wet and dry storage, and assessment of impact of interim storage on associated spent fuel management activities (like handling and transport);
  • Surveillance and monitoring programmes of spent fuel storage facilities as one of the means to evaluate spent fuel performance during storage;
  • Collection and exchange of relevant experience of spent fuel storage and impact on associated spent fuel management activities in the participating countries;
  • Facilitate transfer of knowledge by documenting technical basis for spent fuel storage;
  • Creating a synergy among research projects of the participating Member States; and
  • Developing the capability to assess the impact of potential deterioration mechanisms on fuel and spent fuel storage components.

For more detailed information on SPAR III, please see the information brief or contact the NEFW Contact Point.

Related Information

TECDOCs-1343 and 1680 from the previous SPAR I and SPAR II CRPs - Spent Fuel Performance Assesment and Research - are available here.

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