The materials the United States and other countries plan to use to store high-level nuclear waste are likely to degrade faster than previously thought because of the way those materials interact, new research from Ohio State University shows. The findings, published in a recent issue of “Nature Materials”, show that corrosion of nuclear waste storage materials accelerates because of changes in the chemistry of the nuclear waste solution and the way the materials interact with one another. “This indicates that the current models may not be sufficient to keep this waste safely stored,” Xiaolei Guo, lead author of the study was quoted in the news release issued by the university. The team’s research focussed on storage materials for high-level nuclear waste that is highly radioactive. While some types of the waste have half-lives of about 30 years, others like plutonium have a half-life that can be tens of thousands of years.
Frontline 13th March 2020 read more »