National Report of the Slovak Republic - Radiation and Nuclear Safety , September 1998

2.4.2 History and Current Status of the NPP A-1

The nuclear power plant A-1 was connected to the distribution grid in December, 1972. After an operation accident in January 1976, the operation of the NPP was restarted. Technical, economic and safety analyses were conducted after the second operation accident which occurred in February, 1977 with the aim to restart the operation of NPP A-1. Based on the outcomes of the analysis, the federal government decided, by its Resolution No. 135/79 from 1979, of abandon the idea of restarting NPP A-1 operation, and started activities aimed at decommissioning the NPP A-1. Since at the time no legislation was available with respect to decommissioning of nuclear power plants, partial problems connected with these issues would be dealt with by specific government resolutions. The concept and time schedule of NPP A-1 decommissioning currently in place were adopted by Slovak Government's Resolution No. 227/92. The time schedule including a comprehensive project was approved by Slovak Government's Resolutions Nos. 266/93, 877/94 and 649/95.

Fig. 2.4.1 Principal layout of the A-1 NPP

Equipment of the secondary (inactive) power plant facilities and some auxiliary circuits equipment have so far been disassembled to free space for new technologies. The main activities were focused on the provision of technologies for the transport of spent fuel, treatment and processing of liquid RAW from the spent fuel storage site, and of other RAW from the power plant operation.

From the viewpoint of the present activity distribution, the current status of NPP A-1 may be characterized as follows:

The biggest potential risk of direct environmental contamination comes from the original, currently non-operated storage tanks within the premises No. 41 (containing contaminated sludge), from storage site of solid RAW in premises No. 44/20, and contaminated rain water in the NPP A-1 area.

Based on an inter-governmental agreement signed in 1956, fresh and spent fuel were gradually transported back after 1977, the transport of spent nuclear fuel to Russian Federation (where it is transported back for re-processing) is about to be completed.  

Chrompik vitrification (approx. 9 cubic meters, total volume activity 109 Bq/dm3 ) started in 1997, in the framework of active trial operation. Moreover, the volume activity of the long-term storage site pond coolant water was reduced using sorbents (activity reduction by about two orders of magnitude could be achieved). Also, liquid RAW concentrates from NPP A-1 operation were processed and treated on a bitumenation plant, and 6 cubic meters of concentrates from NPP V-1 were processed in 1997. Concentrate processing from NPP V-1, V-2 goes on in 1998.

Technologies to process and treat other types of wastes (solid and liquid) are under preparation to meet the project objectives (for details, see the following Section 2.4.3.).

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