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Waste, radioactive, classification

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Radioactive waste used to be classified in Germany according to its dose rate as low active waste (LAW), medium active waste (MAW) and high active waste (HAW:) This differentiation is still valid in many countries. This classification, however, makes no sense for safety-analytical considerations regarding ultimate waste disposal since the dose rate is not decisive in this context. It is the radioactive inventory and the heat generated during the radioactive decay process that are important. These parameters are required for the emplacement operation, for the technical design to control incidents and for the post-operation phase of the repository. For geological reasons no considerable temperature increases should occur in the planned "Konrad" repository. Therefore, the temperature increase in the host rock of the emplacement section has been limited to 3 kelvin. The admissible heat output of a waste package results from this specification.

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