Deep Isolation Wins $3.6 Million Grant to Develop Universal Nuclear Waste Disposal Canister for Advanced Reactor Spent Fuel

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BERKELEY, Calif., March 11, 2022 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ — Deep Isolation, in partnership with the University of California, Berkeley, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and NAC International, has been awarded a $3.6 million grant by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) to develop a universal nuclear waste disposal canister for advanced reactor waste streams.

The project, one of two awarded to Deep Isolation by the ARPA-E Optimizing Nuclear Waste and Advanced Reactor Disposal Systems program, will support the development of low-carbon advanced reactor power plants by establishing a universal canister design and waste form acceptance criteria.

The canister will be compatible with the current dry storage and transportation infrastructure while meeting thermal, volumetric, and criticality waste acceptance constraints across a range of geologic repository options, including Deep Isolation’s deep borehole solution, to meet U.S. and international market needs.

“The fact that Deep Isolation is receiving two awards from ARPA-E affirms the importance of disposal innovations for advanced nuclear technologies,” said Deep Isolation COO Rod Baltzer, who led an earlier project with company partner NAC International to develop a preliminary canister design. “The canister developed with NAC is specific for existing reactors. This new project allows us to design a canister for advanced reactors.”

The current U.S. nuclear waste disposal solution calls for building a mined repository, an expansive network of large disposal tunnels. By designing a canister for high-level waste that could fit either a mined or a deep borehole repository (where 18-inch drillholes are configured horizontally, vertically, or slanted), costs could be reduced and safety procedures could be optimized.

Also announced this week: Deep Isolation, Oklo Inc. and the Argonne and Idaho national labs were awarded a $4 million ONWARDS grant to explore locating a deep borehole repository at a commercialized fuel recycling facility.

This is the first focused program to identify pathways to reduce waste material and minimize the need for disposal sites, and it’s the first U.S.-funded program to explore pairing a commercial borehole solution with an advanced reactor recycling facility.

About Deep Isolation

Deep Isolation is a leading global innovator in nuclear waste storage and disposal solutions. Driven by a passion for environmental stewardship and scientific ingenuity, the company’s patented solution of advanced nuclear technologies enables global delivery through its partnerships with industry leaders as well as flexible IP licensing options.

Media Contact

Kari Hulac, Deep Isolation, +1 925-549-2634, [email protected]


SOURCE Deep Isolation

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