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J.S. Feener, W.S. Charlton, "The Impact of Front End Non-Destructive Assay Techniques on Accountancy Systems at Reprocessing Facilities," Proceedings of the 51st Annual Meeting of the Institute of Nuclear Materials and Management, Baltimore, MD, USA, July 11-15, 2010.


Currently available front end spent fuel non-destructive assay (SFNDA) measurement techniques have uncertainties that are too large to be beneficial to the nuclear material accountancy (MA) system atreprocessing facilities. Because of this, the containment and surveillance (C/S) system, alone, has to reach the safeguard goals for the facility at the front end. A spent fuel measurement technique with a low enough uncertainty would allow the requirements of the C/S system to be relaxed. Extensive work is currently being done on SFNDA measurementsystems. While this work also has the application to resolve shipper-receiver differences and accountancy at spent fuel pools, it could also improve accountancy at the front end of areprocessing facility. This work will assist in identifying the requirements of these measurement techniques to be beneficial to the MA system. This work also shows the relationship between the SFNDA uncertainty, MA and C/S nondetection probabilities, safeguard goals (probability of detection and false alarm rate), facility throughput, and the material balance period mainly for the material balance area from the spent fuel storage area to the input accountability tank. In one example, we showed that a SFNDA uncertainty of 1.31% could lead to as much as an 8 times decrease in requirements of the C/Ssystem for a large reprocessing plant. This could potentially lead to significant cost reductions.

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