Decommissioning and decontamination

The main task of the division is the decommissioning and decontamination (ND) of facilities and equipment from 45 years of research and development activities at the Seibersdorf location. Other external projects are also taken over; examples in recent years include the decommissioning of a radiochemical university institute, a laboratory complex of the IAEO and smaller decontaminations of historical contaminated sites.

In addition to handling the operational aspects of the dismantling projects, the ND division also focuses on the development and application of procedures and techniques for decommissioning nuclear facilities as well as the maintenance and expansion of expertise in this area in order to perform complex tasks safely, efficiently and cost-effectively. The ND division can draw on decades of experience, for example from the extremely successful dismantling of research reactor ASTRA, which set international benchmarks with regard to safety, project duration and costs.

Screening plant and crushing plant

Expertise in decommissioning and dismantling techniques

All procedures for decommissioning of systems, components, buildings and terrains as well as the separation, disassembly and demolition techniques are applied.

The type and scale of decontamination to be carried out depend on the type of plant, the history of the operation, the planned disposal method and/or release of the radioactive substances as well as the objective of decommissioning or decontamination.

The disassembly techniques mainly deploy conventional methods with the respective associated radiation and occupational safety measures.

Laboratory during decommissioning

Expertise in decontamination techniques

Superficial radioactive substances can be removed with chemical and/or mechanical means (decontamination). This reduces the activity and dose rate of system components.

Dekontgel method

New developments and perspectives

During the decommissioning and decontamination of nuclear facilities and equipment, high priority is given to innovative methods that minimise radioactive accumulation while maintaining the highest safety standards for humans and the environment and minimising radiation exposure (e.g. Dekontgel method, development of ground measuring system including material preparation, etc.).