The safety assessment of packages for the transport of radioactive material follows the IAEA regulations and guidance. The specified regulatory tests cover severe accidents and demonstrate the package containment system integrity. Special attention must be drawn to the behaviour of the content which could move inside the package due to unpreventable gaps caused by the loading procedure and the structure of the content. A possible internal impact of the content which occurs during the drop tests onto the lid system is investigated. The IAEA regulations SSR-6 and the Guidance SSG-26, revised recently, consider input from Germany and France related to the significance of internal gaps.

In the context of a waste package design assessment, a model was equipped with a representative content to conduct a drop test with an internal impact. The weight and kinetic impact of this content covered all possible real contents. The objective of the test was to maximize the load onto the lid system and to prove the mechanical integrity by complying with the required leak tightness. The test was conducted conservatively at a package temperature lower than −40 °C at the BAM Test Site Technical Safety.

This paper gives an overview of efforts to address internal gaps and their consequences, and the BAM efforts with the implementation of this topic into IAEA regulations and guidance material. The paper then focuses on the conduction of a drop test and investigation of internal component impact.

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