Around the world, approx. 450,000 metric tons of radioactive spent fuel is temporarily stored in pools and dry casks above ground. No spent nuclear fuel anywhere in the world has yet been placed in a permanent repository.

The most widely proposed deep geological disposal concept for the high-level waste is for a mined repository comprising tunnels or caverns into which packaged waste would be placed. Near surface disposal facilities are currently in operation for low-level waste. Radioactive waste must be contained for many thousands of years if human and environmental issues are to be averted.

Rockfield’s radioactive waste modelling capabilities can assist in assessing and mitigating the risk that accompanies radioactive waste disposal.

Utilising our software, Elfen fm and Elfen advanced, the whole lifecycle of radioactive waste can be simulated. From the evolution of the host rock and the effects of tectonic movement through to excavation of the facility and the subsequent effect of degradation on either the whole facility or the individual containers themselves.

Creation of the high-level nuclear waste disposal facility


Potential pathways for the ingress/egress of groundwater through the bentonite component of a layered barrier facility


Collapse modelling of radioactive waste containers


Predict the open hole response with layers accounting for excavation stresses.

Features and Benefits

  • Capture the evolution of the host rock and identify potential facility siting locations
  • Simulate the structural integrity and response of the entire waste facility over its lifespan
  • Understand the deformation and fracturing of the concrete due to leaching, sulphate attack and steel reinforcement corrosion
  • Represent the chemical alteration, swelling and deformation of the bentonite clay layer and identify preferential pathways for the egress/ingress of groundwater
  • Assessment of the impact of seismic events on the performance of the facility and the potential inducement of fault slip
  • Predict the integrity and performance of the waste cannisters accounting for the anticipated loading and corrosion over their lifespan


Our Software

Elfen’s flexibility and modelling power has allowed it to be successfully utilised in a wide range of industries. We have developed specialist software modules to cater towards your specific industry. 

Elfen Advanced

Elfen Advanced

Elfen Advanced provides a full understanding of the stress regime, deformation, seismogenic zone, particle size prediction and production profile that results from the excavation of open pits, long wall mines or sub-level caves.

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Elfen Forward Modelling

Elfen Forward Modelling

Utilised to create accurate simulations of geological evolution that can be quickly interpreted, studied and understood.

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