Are there any currently-operating disposal facilities that can accept all of the depleted uranium oxide that would be generated from conversion of DOE's depleted UF6 inventory?
With respect to available capacity, three sites could accept the entire inventory of depleted uranium oxide: the Department of Energy's (DOE's) Hanford site in Washington State, DOE's Nevada Test Site, or EnergySolution Clive, Utah Facility, a commercial site. Each of these sites would have sufficient capacity for either the grouted or ungrouted oxide forms of depleted uranium (for the two DOE sites, this also takes into account other projected disposal volumes through the year 2070).
The minimum required disposal volume for the entire inventory would be for ungrouted uranium dioxide (UO2), requiring 61,000 m3 of disposal volume. The maximum required volume would be for grouted triuranium octaoxide (U3O8), which would require 410,000 m3. As of 1999, the sites have the following remaining capacities: Hanford site, 1.5 million m3; NTS site, 2.5 million m3; and EnergySolution Clive, Utah Facility, 11 million m3. Each of these sites is located in arid or semi-arid desert land. Current estimates of disposal costs range from about $250 to $1,100 per cubic meter.
More information on EnergySolution Clive, Utah Facility can be found at http://energysolutions.com/customer-portal/clive.
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