Henrik Drake portrait photo

Henrik Drake engaged as expert in South Korean research on final repository for nuclear waste

Henrik Drake helps South Korean researchers study the conditions for a final repository for nuclear waste in South Korea. The results give us perspective on the good conditions found in the Swedish bedrock.

Henrik Drake, associate professor in environmental science at Linnaeus University, has previously studied the bedrock at Oskarshamn and Forsmark – the latter being the location for the future Swedish final repository for nuclear waste, in accordance with a decision by the Swedish government earlier this year.

His experience in the field recently resulted in him being contacted by researchers at Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute, to help them study the bedrock at their research facilities for final repository. He has helped the researchers replicate the methods he has previously used in Sweden.

“When I’ve been working on projects linked to the Swedish final repository, I have, among other things, conducted two studies on how to track infiltration of oxygen-rich water in bedrock fractures. This is important knowledge as the copper canisters in an intended final repository may corrode if they are exposed to oxygen for a longer period of time”, Drake explains.

Gives perspective on Swedish conditions

The results from the South Korean study are now being presented and show that there is a good margin betweenn the depth at which oxygen has been found to affect the bedrock, the so called redox front, and the intended final repository depth. This is similar to results from Sweden, but at slightly different depths.

“From a Swedish perspective, this study offers a useful comparison. The bedrock in Sweden, in comparison, has had a very good ability to remove dissolved oxygen from the groundwater quickly, and at shallow depths”, Drake concludes.


More information:

Learn more about research at Linnaeus University linked to the Swedish final repository of nuclear waste: “Prehistory meets the future when nuclear waste is to be buried for 100 000 years

The research study “Long-term change in uranium migration processes in highly eroded granite, demonstrated by uranium series disequilibrium in fracture-filling materials” has been published in Applied Geochemistry.