Consequences of a nuclear material transport sabotage: A general approach for the case study of sabotage per use of an armor piercing weapon
Titre du congrès :PATRAM
Ville du congrès :Miami
Date du congrès :21/10/2007
In order to predict the consequences of a sabotage act directed against a transport of nuclear material, the present paper is an attempt to put together some components of an approach dedicated to the assessment of the release produced when using a perforating or cutting device to spill out the content of the cask. The category of threat studied here is defined especially with regards to its objective: the objective of sabotage is to instantaneously create a radioactive source term capable of polluting a more or less important area including the vicinity of the target. This definition makes the difference with theft or diversion threats where the material is stolen and taken away from where it has been removed. The work accomplished and reported in this paper is in keeping with the general pattern of the multiyear program of IRSN where the resistance of various casks to various threats is studied.
The paper is structured in two parts. In a first part, we summarize as a whole the question of estimating the release after perforation and give a short review of past studies on the subject. All this work has motivated the development of an approach. The approach developed and used at IRSN is introduced by the statement of a generic problem. Then we identify all the influent parameters which need to be addressed. The most seducing aspect of the approach is the fact that it relies on only six parameters: the five parameters relate to (i) the energy sources capable of moving the material from the inside to the outside, (ii) the cask resistance and (iii) the release mechanisms and physics.
The authors have not included any numerical example in the paper due to the evident sensitivity of such material.