A final cap will be emplaced over the disposed waste as part of the closure engineering for the UK’s Low Level Waste Repository (LLWR). Additional profiling material will be required above the waste to obtain the required landform. Consideration has been given to the potential opportunity to reuse Low Specific Activity Material (LSAM, defined as up to 200 Bq g−1) imported from other sites as a component of the necessary profiling material for the final repository cap. Justification of such a strategy would ultimately require a demonstration that the solution is optimal with respect to other options for the long-term management of such materials. The proposal is currently at the initial evaluation stage and seeks to establish how LSAM reuse within the cap could be achieved within the framework of an optimised safety case for the LLWR, should such a management approach be pursued. The key considerations include the following: The LSAM must provide the same engineering function as the remainder of the profiling material. The cap design must ensure efficient leachate collection, drainage and control for Low Level Waste (LLW) (and, by extension, LSAM) during the Period of Authorisation. In the longer term the engineering design must passively direct any accumulating waters preferentially away from surface water systems. An initial design has been developed that would allow the placement of around 220,000m3 of LSAM. The potential impact of the proposal has been assessed against the current Environmental Safety Case.

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