26 Apr 2021

Commissioning of Chornobyl ISF-2 Ongoing

In April, the licensing process for operation of the dry interim spent fuel storage facility (ISF-2) at the Chornobyl NPP is to be completed.

In March, a pre-licensing inspection of the Chornobyl NPP took place. An inspection team consisting of state inspectors of the State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate of Ukraine and a representative of the State Scientific and Technical Center for Nuclear and Radiation Safety verified conditions for safe implementation of nuclear activities and operations and assessed the Chornobyl NPP’s capability to operate ISF-2 in compliance with nuclear and radiation safety requirements.

Interim Spent Nuclear Fuel Dry Storage Facility (ISF-2) © SSTC NRS

The dry interim spent fuel storage facility is designed to accept, process, and store spent fuel assemblies and additional spent absorbers that were accumulated at the Chornobyl NPP.

Spent nuclear fuel will be stored employing dry modular storage technology, where fuel is stored in sealed metal baskets filled with inert gas. The baskets are placed in concrete modules. The modules are designed to serve as shielding and prevent damage of the metal baskets.

The facility was constructed through funds of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. The ISF-2 commissioning will allow safe storage of spent fuel from the Chornobyl NPP for the next 100 years.

For reference: more than 21,000 fuel assemblies were accumulated during Chornobyl NPP operation from 1977 to 2000. They are currently stored in the wet spent fuel storage facility (ISF-1). ISF-1 is not designed for long-term fuel storage and its service life is limited, so all spent fuel assemblies will be transferred to newly constructed ISF-2.


Tetiana Verbytska