Modelling multi-phase flow phenomena in concrete barriers used for geological disposal of radioactive waste

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Abstract

Gas generation and gas transport phenomena occur in geological repositories of radioactive waste. This has been extensively studied over the past ten years, usually within the framework of international projects (MEGAS, PROGRESS, etc.). These studies indicate that the production of hydrogen by anaerobic corrosion of metals is the most important source for gas generation. Laboratory and in situ experiments carried out at SCK•CEN indicate that, in the presence of Boom Clay (the reference geologic formation for deep disposal studies in Belgium), carbon steel suffers generalised corrosion estimated conservatively at 1 µm y-1. Simulations with the finite difference multi-phase flow code TOUGH2 were carried out in an attempt to quantify the effects of hydrogen gas generation on desaturation of initially saturated concrete components of the disposal gallery and the concomitant expulsion of cementitious pore-water into the surrounding host formation. Several simulation cases were considered and addressed differences in initial water saturation degree of concrete, hydrogen gas generation rate, and material porosity. Multi-phase flow modelling was found to be helpful to get insight into the phenomenology of coupled water-gas flow in the cementitious engineered barriers.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe 11th International Conference on Environmental Remediation and Radioactive Waste Management
Place of PublicationFairfield, NJ, United States
Pages1-9
Publication statusPublished - 30 May 2008
EventICEM 2007 - 11th International Conference on Environmental Remediation and Radioactive Waste Management - American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), Bruges, Belgium
Duration: 2 Sep 20076 Sep 2007

Conference

ConferenceICEM 2007 - 11th International Conference on Environmental Remediation and Radioactive Waste Management
CountryBelgium
CityBruges
Period2007-09-022007-09-06

Keywords

  • low-level waste disposal, geological disposal, gas generation, gas transport modelling, TOUGH2 model

ID: 321695