atw 2019-05


atw Vol. 64 (2019) | Issue 5 ı May


Guideline to Prepare a Preliminary

Decommissioning Plan for Nuclear

Facilities in Republic of Korea

Byung-Sik Lee and Kyung-Woo Choi

1 Introduction The legal framework of decommissioning in Korea was enhanced through the revision of

Nuclear Safety Act (NSA) and its subordinate status in 2015. According to the revised NSA, the nuclear power plant

licensee should prepare the decommissioning plan (DP), i.e. preliminary DP, at the construction/operation stage of

NPP. Additionally, the licensee should submit the DP, i.e. final DP, for approval of NPP decommissioning in Korea. In

particular, the preliminary DP includes comprehensive implementation plans, maintenance of facility records, and

physical and procedural methods to limit contamination and activation [1]. Therefore it is clear that the nuclear facility

is considered for decommissioning in site selection, design, construction, commissioning and operation phases.

The DP generally includes the decommissioning

strategy including a relevant

technical review report, to provide a

justification for selecting a decommissioning

strategy. The decom missioning

cost is included in the DP, which is estimated

based on the decommissioning

activities of the nuclear facilities to be

dismantled, and if necessary, a decommissioning

cost estimate report should

be attached. The DP also includes

decommissioning schedules, decommissioning

techniques, and manpower/

training programs. Most importantly,

provisions on safety and radiation protection

for population and workers are

systema tically and deeply described [2].

To this end, the DP is divided into a

preliminary DP and a final DP in

accordance with the construction/

operation phase and decommissioning

phase of the nuclear facility,

respectively [1]. The details of the DP

from the preliminary to the final plan

are progressively described in detail.

The most important factor in preparing

the DP is to make full use of the

design/construction/operation data

of the nuclear facilities.

The new nuclear facilities are subjected

to a background survey of the

site including the acquisition of

environ mental information necessary

for environmental impact assessment

from the site selection stage. These data

will be periodically revised until the

decommissioning process, when practical,

it should be helpful. Indeed, such

site-related environmental information

is used as a basis for defining the

surrounding natural radiation of nuclear

facilities and is used as a comparison

to assess the environmental impact

of dismantling nuclear facilities.

However, if there is no background

survey on the sur rounding environment

at the nuclear facility construction

stage, the site environmental survey

is conducted during the operation

of the facility. But, if there is not

enough time to investigate further,

similar area surveys are avail able. In

the case of a new nuclear facility, a

preliminary DP has to be prepared

from its construction license stage and

periodically revised until the final

shutdown of the nuclear facility. The

decommissioning operators include

the appropriateness of decommissioning

method, the appropriateness of

decommissioning cost, the appropriateness

of decommis sioning resources,

the method of decommissioning

safety evaluation, and the decommissioning

waste management plan [3].

The preliminary DP can clearly

show that important records related

to decommissioning, such as facility

design data, design data change

history, and operation records, are

maintained in accordance with the

procedure throughout the life of the

nuclear facility. According to the NSA,

the preliminary DP should be revised

periodically every 10 years in consideration

of operation experience,

lessons of decommissioning similar

facilities, new safety requirements or

revised safety requirements related

with decommissioning, development

trends of selected decommissioning

strategies and related decommissioning

technologies, and so on.

The purpose of this paper is to provide

the guideline how to prepare the

preliminary DP in view of safety considerations

based on the experience of

nuclear facility decommissioning in

major foreign countries.

2 Considerations to

prepare a preliminary

decommissioning plan

The preliminary DP must be sub mitted

at the time of applying for the operating

license of the new nuclear facilities.

Therefore, there is a limit to the depth

of the technical contents of each item

in comparison of the final DP. However,

the preliminary DP should include

the expected decommissioning strategy,

appropriateness of decommissioning

method, calculation of decommissioning

cost, assurance of decommissioning

finance, decom missioning

safety and radiation protection plan,

and decommis sioning waste management

plan. Also, since the most important

inputs to the DP are the design/

construction/operation data, the plan

should describe how these records are

maintained in accordance with relevant

quality assurance programs for

important records related to decommissioning

over the life span. That is,

design data of nuclear facilities, design

data change history, operating records,

etc. should be described in the preliminary

DP [3, 4].

In the preliminary DP, considerations

are given to the following items by

referring to the results of the decommissioning

pre-feasibility study at the

engineering stage of nuclear facilities,

the design specification of facilities,

and the previous decommissioning

experience data at home and abroad.


Final goal of the decommissioning

and application criteria and standards.


Management of spent fuel and

decommissioning waste.


Analysis of critical path activities in

disassembly scenario.


Disclosure important factors in the

decommissioning project management.

3 Identification of

contents in a preliminary

decommissioning plan

3.1 Management of design,

construction and operation


Data on design, construction and

operation experience necessary for

Decommissioning and Waste Management

Guideline to Prepare a Preliminary Decommissioning Plan for Nuclear Facilities in Republic of Korea ı Byung-Sik Lee and Kyung-Woo Choi

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