Transuranic elements (Np, Pu, Am, Cm, ...) and fission products are produced by the operation of nuclear reactors, e.g. light water reactors (LWR). Because of their radio-toxicity, these elements have to be safely separated from the biosphere and stored until their final decay.
By the process of transmutation into stable or fissionable elements a significant reduction of the amout and the radio-toxicity of Transuranic Elements (Plutonium (Pu) and Minor Actinides (MA)) and long lived fission products (LLFP) should be achieved. The storage time will be dramatically reduced by transmutation.
Total ingestive radio-toxicity of one ton of LWR waste in final respository.
With transmutation/incineration of Pu + MAs + LLFPs the radiotoxicity curve should approach the curve for fission products. This will reduce time-scales from geologic scale to historic scale. This should relieve concerns of surveillance, leakage to biosphere, problems of documentation, proliferation risk etc.
The 3500 years old pyramides demonstrate that confinements can be constructed in a stable way on a historic time scale with proper documentation.
Last update: 03/2005