VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and Fortum on 3 December signed a letter of intent on the decommissioning of the FIR 1 research reactor and the nuclear power plant structural materials research laboratory.
In addition to cooperation over dismantling and waste handling, the companies will investigate possibilities for interim storage and final disposal of the decommissioning waste from the Loviisa nuclear power palnt site.
VTT applied to the Government in 2017 for permission to decommission the reactor. The used nuclear fuel must be removed from the facility before the reactor is dismantled. VTT primarily intends to repatriate the fuel to its country of origin, the USA. The secondary alternative is deep geological disposal in Olkiluoto, Eurajoki, after interim storage.
The actual demolition phase will begin in 2021 at the earliest. Preparations have been made for the decommissioning of the laboratory, which will begin in 2019.
VTT will continue its support to Finnish and foreign nuclear operators for safe and economical use of power plants, by testing structural materials in the modern radiological laboratories of the Centre for Nuclear Safety.
The reactor was in operation between 1962 and 2015 and will continue to serve as a pilot during the decommissioning phase, preparing the entire Finnish nuclear power sector for the forthcoming decommissioning of power plant reactors. Learn more about FIR 1 in The glow of Finland’s first reactor fades published to commemorate the closure of the reactor in 2015.