Joint NEA/IAEA Workshop on the

    Operational Safety of Geological Repositories

    OECD Conference Centre
    Paris, France

    June 29-July 1 2016


    Geological repositories for the disposal of radioactive waste are designed to contain and isolate the emplaced waste by means of engineered and natural barriers. While the operations of geological repositories are somewhat similar to the operations of nuclear facilities (e.g. nuclear power plants), geological repositories that are being located deep below ground (hundreds of meters) require specific design and operational provisions to ensure their safety for the entirety of their lifetimes. Both the NEA and the IAEA have long recognised the importance of operational safety. Projects and work initiatives have been carried out with different work scopes and objectives to address various operational safety issues. For instance, the NEA IGSC created the Expert Group on Operational Safety (EGOS) in 2013 to develop the best operating practices and the optimal design provisions of geological repositories. The expert group has since issued several reports ranging from fire risk management in underground facilities to co-activity planning, ventilation system design, etc. Whereas the IAEA had launched the GEOSAF Project in 2008, it has since been used as a forum to exchange ideas and experience on the development and review of safety cases for geological disposal facilities among their member states. The IAEA GEOSAF Project, now in its second phase, focuses on developing a methodology to define an overarching safety case supporting the demonstration of safety of geological disposal, integrating both the operational and post-closure periods.


    • explore how implementers address operational safety in developing geological repositories for radioactive waste disposal;  reveal effective/practical design alternatives used in achieving operational safety in geological repositories (e.g. design and operations of ventilation system, underground transport vehicles);
    • evaluate the adequacy/comprehensiveness of existing regulatory framework in guiding implementers in addressing operational safety in geological repositories;
    • identify areas/topics that require further work.


    The workshop focuses on three key topics: 1) technical design aspects, e.g. fire risk management, on-site transportation and emplacement; 2) repository regulatory framework and requirements; and 3) radiological protection issues in DGR, each one consisting of small group discussions guided by specific questions.

    Working language

    The working language of the workshop will be English.

    Registration and workshop programme

    Dates: June 29-July 1 2016

    Venue: OECD Conference Centre, 2 Rue André Pascal, 75016 Paris


    Registration deadline: 31 May 2016

    This workshop will be organised for NEA IGSC/EGOS members and IAEA GEOSAF members only.

    The registration fee is 100 EUR per person.

    Draft workshop programme

    Workshop proceedings

    Proceedings will be published and will include abstracts and presentations, conclusions and observations drawn from the workshop.

    Workshop programme committee

    Name Country Organisation
    Wilhelm Bollingerfehr Germany DBE Technology
    Thorsten FaSS Germany GRS
    Bengt Hedberg Sweden SSM
    Kristina Skagius Sweden SKB
    Michael Tichauer France IRSN
    Sylvie Voinis France ANDRA
    Andrey Guskov   IAEA
    Gloria Kwong NEA
    Hiroomi Aoki NEA


    Last reviewed: 8 April 2016