Identification of Similarities and Differences Between Managing the Spent Fuel from RBMK and SMR

Project programme
07.11.2023 - 07.11.2028
Project status
Project table
Database link

Two Russian design channel-type graphite-moderated boiling water reactors (RBMK-1500) were shut down for decommissioning in 2004 (Unit 1) and 2009 (Unit 2) at the Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant (INPP). There are approximately 22 000 spent nuclear fuel (SNF) assemblies after the final shutdown of INPP. All assemblies of spent fuel are stored in a dry storage facility on-site at the INPP. The determination of spent fuel characteristics with known uncertainties is essential for waste management safety. Even though RBMK-1500 reactors belong to the boiling light-water reactor (LWR) group, they differ from other LWRs by construction (large core dimensions, an irregular lattice of graphite-fuel elements), materials, fuel composition (relatively low enrichment, burnable erbium ad-mixtures). As a result, it is difficult to adapt modelling tools developed mostly for other LWR reactors for the RBMK spent fuel characterization.

Today, Lithuania imports over 70% of its electricity needs. Lithuania’s national strategies call for all electricity consumption to be generated domestically by 2050. The talks in political circles about the possibility of including SMR technology in the national energy strategy to achieve this target have already begun. In this IAEA CRP, Lithuanian Energy Institute is planning to present the lessons learned from managing the spent fuel of INPP. As well some considerations will be made for the possible SMR technology and respective needs for its spent fuel management in Lithuania. It would help to identify of similarities and differences between managing the spent fuel from RBMK and SMR.


Project ID: IAEA Research Contract No. 26771 / IAEA CRP T13021

Call / Programme: IAEA Coordinated Research Project T13021 „Challenges, Gaps and Opportunities for Managing Spent Fuel from Small Modular Reactors“

Funding: 12 000 EUR (to LEI: 12 000 EUR)


Coordinator: Lithuanian Energy Institute


Funding acknowledgement: receives funding from IAEA Coordinated Research Project T13021 „Challenges, Gaps and Opportunities for Managing Spent Fuel from Small Modular Reactors“ under IAEA Research Contract No. 26771.

Project Team

Name, surname Office phone. e-mail

LEI Representative
Egidijus Babilas 105-AK +37037401914

Project Team
Tadas Kaliatka 415-AK +37037401911
Andrius Slavickas 224-AK +37037401810
Mindaugas Vaišnoras 414-AK +37037401954