Real-time detection of UREX + 3a extraction streams for materials accountancy Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • Due to increased construction of nuclear power plants, current stockpiles of used nuclear fuel, and a desire of the public to reduce the amount of this used nuclear fuel, reprocessing is gaining popularity. However, reprocessing facilities in non-weapon states must be safeguarded. To help create a safeguards strategy for non-weapons states, gamma ray measurements from samples of the UREX+3a reprocessing method were made with a variety of detector types and times. It was determined that the errors from quantitative measurements were too large for safeguards purposes; however, a safeguards strategy based on qualitative gamma ray and neutron measurements was created. Self-shielding and neutron damage to gamma detectors were also looked at. It was determined that there is no noticeable self-shielding for internal pipe diameters less than two inches and that HPGe N-type detectors would be suitable for a neutron radiation environment. Gamma ray spectra were simulated in Monte Carlo Neutron Particle Transport Code for UREX+3a reprocessed fuel that had a decay time of three years. A conclusion was reached that the safeguards approach proposed in this paper would best be suited as an addition to existing safeguard strategies.

author list (cited authors)

  • Goddard, B., Charlton, W. S., & McDeavitt, S. M.

complete list of authors

  • Goddard, B||Charlton, WS||McDeavitt, SM

publication date

  • September 2009