Uranium carbide (UC) is considered an exotic fuel material which has arisen from the UK nuclear test reactor programme. This material has served as both a fuel at sites like Dounreay, Scotland and as a fission target material in facilities such as CERN.
The NDA has an inventory of irradiated uranium carbide as part of its legacy waste exotic fuel materials within its estate and therefore carries the liability for its safe management and ultimately its disposal. Uranium carbide is considered a reactive and potentially pyrophoric material with a reactivity comparable to uranium metal.
Geological disposal is considered the ultimate fate for this unique material and the current PhD project will investigate its corrosion and leaching behaviour under conditions analogous to a GDF facility both (i) pre-closure and (ii) post-closure.
Academic Lead: Tom Scott
Researcher: Dimitris Samaras
Location: University of Bristol