Radioactive Waste: Politics and Technology

By Frans Berkhout | Go to book overview

Appendix I

Glossary of technical terms *
actinides: series of elements beginning with actinium-89, and continuing to lawrencium-103. Includes uranium and all man-made transuranic1 elements.
alpha particle: a charged particle emitted from the nucleus of an atom, having a mass and charge equal in magnitude to a helium nucleus; easily stopped by several sheets of paper.
beta particle: charged particle emitted from a nucleus of an atom, with mass and charge equal to that of an electron; stopped by a thin sheet of metal.
burn-up: a measure of reactor consumption, usually expressed in terms of the energy produced per unit weight of fuel in the reactor (MW days/ tonne).
caesium: element 55, highly mobile in the biosphere.
cladding: protective alloy shielding encapsulating fissionable fuel in the reactor.
decay heat: heat produced by the decay of radioactive materials.
decommissioning: the process of dismantling nuclear facilities once they have ceased operation.
dose: a general form denoting the quality of radiation or energy absorbed.
dose equivalent: basic quantity used in radiation protection. The dose equivalent is the absorbed dose of ionizing radiation weighted by two modifying factors: Q, the quality factor; and N, the product of all other modifying factors specified by the ICRP.
dose limit: the dose of ionizing radiation established by the competent authorities, below which there is no reasonable expectation of unacceptable risk to human health.
far-field: the undisturbed, natural geological barrier around a radwaste repository.
fissile: a nuclide that undergoes fission on absorption of neutrons of any energy.
fission: the splitting of a heavy nucleus into two approximately equal

-231-

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Radioactive Waste: Politics and Technology
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Epigraph vi
  • Contents vii
  • Figures and Tables ix
  • Chapter One - Managing Radioactivity 1
  • Chapter Two - Time and the Boundary of Control 21
  • Chapter Three - The Federal Republic of Germany 47
  • Chapter Four - Sweden 93
  • Chapter Five - The United Kingdom 132
  • Chapter Six - Industry, Regulation and the State: Historical Themes 190
  • Chapter Seven - The Construction of Consent 205
  • Chapter Eight - Conclusions 225
  • Appendix I 231
  • Appendix II 234
  • Bibliography 239
  • Index 253
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