The Armenian NPP in Metsamor is preparing to build a new storage facility for low- and medium-level solid waste. The director of the station, Movses Vardanyan, said on 31 May. Before the end of the year, the plant intends to select contractors (from specialist companies) and conclude a construction contract.
It will be necessary to draw up a technical description of the project for waste disposal, Vardanyan noted. Currently, there are several technologies for the disposal of such waste, including vitrification (mixing with melted glass) and bituminisation (mixing bitumen - a heavy oil product). "Such technologies have not been used in Armenia before, but it is possible in principle to teach them to our nuclear scientists," Vardanyan added. Separate facilities will be built for solid waste and for used fuel.
In Soviet times, used fuel was exported to Russia but after the collapse of the USSR, it began to be stored at the NPP site. For this, using French technology (Framatome), three stages of storage were built at plant and a fourth stage is now being prepared for construction. According to the approved programme, it should be built by 2025.