Nuclear fuel cycle

Sustainable nuclear power needs a sustainable nuclear fuel cycle. The increasing use of nuclear power puts stringent demands on fuel cycle activities and on understanding the behaviour of materials used in nuclear reactors. The IAEA assists its Member States with research and the sharing of experience and good practices. More →

  • Nuclear fuel production

    Uranium is the primary fuel for nuclear reactors. It must be managed properly to produce nuclear fuel in a safe and sustainable manner. Advanced fuels like thorium, as well as fuel cycles that involve reprocessing, present other alternatives to sustainably produce nuclear energy. Read more →

  • Nuclear fuel use

    The performance and reliability of nuclear fuel are very important factors for the safe operation of nuclear power plants. Nuclear fuel also needs to be competitive, robust and able to operate efficiently and safely for longer cycles. Read more →

  • Assurance of nuclear fuel supply

    A well-functioning international nuclear fuel market has played an increasingly important role for many Member States. While it is acknowledged that the international market in nuclear fuel continues to operate effectively and efficiently, countries utilizing or considering adding nuclear power to their energy mix would not only benefit, but also need to have confidence in their ability to obtain nuclear fuel in an assured and predictable manner. Read more →

  • Spent fuel management

    Managing the spent fuel generated by nuclear power plants is an important step of the nuclear fuel cycle. While one third of the spent fuel accumulating globally is reprocessed, most of it is stored until a decision is taken on final processing, treatment or disposal. Read more →

  • Safety of fuel cycle facilities

    The IAEA works with Member States to ensure their nuclear fuel cycle facilities have the highest possible safety level. The Agency is present in every phase of a facility’s lifetime, from the planning to the decommissioning stage. It conducts peer reviews worldwide and provides technical advice. More → Read more →