News & Comment

Nuclear Waste Disposal: Yucca Blowup Theory Bombs, Says Study

Science  22 Mar 1996:
Vol. 271, Issue 5256, pp. 1664
DOI: 10.1126/science.271.5256.1664a

Summary

Last year, an unpublished paper from two physicists at the Los Alamos National Laboratory raised the possibility that the planned nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, might erupt in massive nuclear explosions if isotopes from the waste concentrated in the surrounding rock. The idea got heavy publicity, but a major study by the University of California, Berkeley, now says it is not credible, given the physics and chemistry of the waste and the geological processes at work in Yucca Mountain.

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