Regular Meeting on Spent Fuel Storage Defense-in-Depth

Oct 20, 2022
5:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Key Takeaways

The CEP received an update from a nuclear fuel engineer at SONGS about defense-in-depth for onsite storage of spent fuel, including results from inspections of the NUHOMS horizontal storage system. In November 2021, two spent fuel canisters were inspected using robotic, high-resolution cameras that can detect an indication smaller than the thickness of a human hair. In January 2022, the pad and rebar-reinforced concrete modules were inspected. Results show the canisters and structures meet all inspection criteria and remain in excellent condition.

Moving forward, the NUHOMS system will be inspected every 5 years. The number of inspections industry-wide is increasing and that will help inform best practices. We will receive another update on spent fuel defense-in-depth late in 2023.

We also heard from Christian Abueg, a representative for Orange County Supervisor Lisa Bartlett, (the Supervisor also is co-chair of the Actionfor Spent Fuel Solutions Now (ASFSN) coalition and a member of the CEP). It was encouraging to hear the US Department of Energy (DOE) recently released a summary of responses to its consent-based siting process for interim storage and that it has issued a $16 million funding opportunity for communities that have an interest in learning more about the prospect of hosting a spent fuel storage facility.

ASFSN coalition’s first webinar on 28 October from 1-2 pm PDT will feature DOE’s Sam Brinton, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Spent Fuel and Waste Disposition, who will help us understand the new funding opportunity. To RSVP, email

Dismantlement of outdoor structures and components inside the containment domes remains ongoing, including work to process and transfer Greater-Than-Class-C waste to the Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation through mid-year 2023.

The CEP also received an update about liquid batch releases. Water from the spent fuel pools will be cleaned up and released starting in January 2023, and from the reactor cavities starting in 4Q 2023. SCE will continue providing 48-hour advance notice through the SONGS website.


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