Understanding argillaceous rock properties for the deep disposal of radioactive waste: Clay Club meeting

The five barriers to used nuclear fuel. Source Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO), Canada, newsletter

The five barriers to used nuclear fuel. Source: Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO), Canada.

The NEA Clay Club was established in 1990 to examine technical and scientific issues of various argillaceous rocks for hosting deep geological repositories for long-lived radioactive waste. At its 30th annual meeting held on 23 September 2020 via video conference, the group reviewed the status of the CLAYWAT Project, which was started in 2016 to examine the binding state and mobility of pore water in indurated argillaceous sediments which may be considered as hosts for geological disposal repositories for radioactive waste.

The group also discussed the Clay Club Catalogue of Characteristics of Argillaceous Rocks, as well as several proposals for future activities, including a project on pressure anomalies in clay rock formations and a workshop on pore-water in clay rock. The meeting included a presentation by the German Federal Office for the Safety of Nuclear Waste Management (BASE) on the status of the siting process in Germany. Another highlight of the meeting was a presentation on the R&D status of site screening of clay formations in Northwest China for a deep geological repository.

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