BODA CLAYTON FORMATION RESEARCH 

Preparation program for the disposal of high level radioactive waste
(BCF Project)

nvestigation history of the Boda Claystone Formation

 

 

The use of BCF for environmental protection was first proposed by experts of Mecsek Ore Mining Company (MOMC), the predecessor of Mecsekérc Ltd. in 1983. Starting in 1989, MOMC launched a comprehensive research program aimed to prepare the disposal of low and/or intermediate level radioactive and other hazardous waste. In 1992, the properties of the BCF learned so far had been deemed suitable by an international experts’ revision, thus the further research in the framework of the newly established National Project, which began in 1993, was done considering the criteria of the disposal of high level radioactive waste.

The Short-term Program – which had been concluded between 1994 and 1999 – was coordinated and supervised by the MOMC, and later by its successor, Mecsekérc Ltd. The Short-term Program could be very effective due to the fact, that the world’s deepest research laboratory – utilizing the infrastructure and underground excavations of the former Mecsek uranium mine – could facilitate an extensive in situ research program.

Preliminary examinations helped the development of the security conception of the final disposal in the BCF by revealing the most important characteristics and processes regarding the final disposal.

The Act CXVI of 1996 (the new Nuclear Law) and the legislation aiding its execution sorted out the organizational, financial, professional and supervising framework of the investigations in an appropriate way. The Public Limited Company for Radioactive Waste Management (PURAM) established in the July of 1998 is responsible for any matter regarding the handling and final disposal of radioactive waste. That means that in this new scheme Mecsekérc Ltd. remained the general contractor of several investigation phases on behalf of PURAM and acted as a professional coordinator organization.

The research program of the BCF restarted in 2003 with the framework and professional tasks finalized for the work to be carried out between 2003 and 2008 (Medium-term Program). This Medium-term Program comprised of two investigation phases to be licensed separately, but are based on each other. The most important task of the first phase was to select and rank eligible sites for the installation of a new underground research laboratory and for the final disposal of radioactive waste, also evaluating research on the BCF and its geological surroundings had to be conducted. In the course of the second phase, a thorough research had to be performed on the site selected during the first phase and also regulatory approval had to be obtained for the installation of the underground research laboratory

1.600 m

the deepest borehole

9,9 km

complex borehole logging

8.000 hours

of hydrogeological testing

 

The current contract
 

Currently, the accomplishment phase of Stage 2 (to be concluded between 2014-2018) of Phase I of the geological research of the BCF goes on. Mecsekérc Ltd. participates as a joint general contractor with Közgép Ltd. managing the construction and the professional works. At the current phase, there are 10 deep exploratory boreholes to be drilled as per the investigation plan, with a total length of 11 km, on which 9,9 km of borehole logging has to be done. 8000 hours hydrodynamic testing and almost 1000 geological, geochemical, rock mechanical, isotope migration tests have to be performed on water samples and drill cores in accordance with investigation plan. The results are summarized in five speciality reports

 

 

  • Geomorphological hazards,

  • 3D geological model,

  • Hydrogeological circumstances,

  • Geodynamical conditions,

  • Attributes of repository host rocks.

 

 

  • Depth of the deepest borehole 1600 m

  • A total of 11 km deep drilling

  • 9.9 km complex borehole logging

  • 8000 hours of hydrogeological testing

 

Investor: PURAM Ltd..
Contract sum: 27,071,544 $
Contract period: 2013-2018
Project leader: Földing Gábor