Strategies and Considerations for the Back End of the Fuel Cycle

Nuclear Energy Agency

A wealth of technical information exists on nuclear fuel cycle options – combinations of nuclear fuel types, reactor types, used or spent nuclear fuel (SNF) treatments, and disposal schemes – and most countries with active nuclear power programmes conduct some level of research and development on advanced nuclear fuel cycles. However, perhaps because of the number of options that exist, it is often difficult for policy makers to understand the nature and magnitude of the differences between the various options.

This report explores the fuel cycle options and the differentiating characteristics of these options. It also describes the driving factors for decisions related to both the development of the fuel cycle and the characteristics resulting from implementing the option. It includes information on the current status and future plans for power reactors, reprocessing facilities, disposal facilities, and the status of research and development activities in several countries. It is designed for policy makers to understand the differences among the fuel cycle options in a way that is concise, understandable, and based on the existing technologies, while keeping technical discussions to a minimum.

11 Mar 2021 72 pages English 9789264429475 (PDF)

Authors: OECD and Nuclear Energy Agency