- Site selection and characterization studies for Nuclear Power Plants and other Nuclear Fuel Cycle Facilities.
- Risk analysis consulting for existing facilities that may have suffered a natural or technological event, requiring an assessment of its impact on safety systems.
INVAP, in collaboration with IMERIS (Seismic and Earth Sciences Institute, depending from the Faculty of Engineering of the Universidad Nacional de Cuyo), has formed a multidisciplinary professional team devoted to site selection and characterization studies for Nuclear Power Plants and other Nuclear facilities siting, employing advanced technology and methodology. This team identifies, selects and characterizes sites of around 1 sq km, starting from very large regions of more than 1 million sq km, in accordance with the latest standards and international recommendations.
Studies include a detailed survey and 3D modeling, both of the surface under study and the Earth's crust in a depth of up to 130 m. These studies are based on satellite, ground and underground information, as well as on in-site sampling and laboratory analysis, in order to identify and quantify risks associated to several external events, either environmental or human (earthquakes, volcanoes, tsunamis, floods, draughts, soil creep and ground settlement, electric storms, sand storms, plane falls, fires, explosions among other) that might affect the facility safety. Besides, the team provides a detailed analysis of the site’s impact on the environment, as well as of possible ways of transfer of radionuclides to the surrounding population, including potential nuclear and radiologic emergencies prevention and mitigation.
INVAP’s vast experience both in the safe design of nuclear plants and in the study of radiologic impact on humans and environment under normal operation or in emergency, guarantees a comprehensive study of the physical and technological safety that will allow to continuously monitor the facility along its whole lifetime and even during decommissioning of the multiple engineering and natural safety barriers.
Besides the specific analysis related to safety, studies also include the evaluation and optimization of strategic infrastructure, development (including domestic contribution to the project), economic, demographic, geopolitical, social and cultural factors that will influence the final decision on the site.
Regarding the safety assessment of facilities after natural (earthquakes, faults) or technological (explosions, fires) accidents, our engineering and risk evaluation groups have validated the adequate functioning of processes, structures and systems in nuclear reactors, enrichment facilities, nuclear fuel plants, radioisotope production plants in several countries, among them Argentina, Algeria, Egypt and Australia.