In the period July 12-16, 2023, State Enterprise “Radioactive Waste” (SE RAW) hosted a scientific visit within the framework of an International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) technical cooperation project. The objective of the program was to familiarise the Slovenian RAW management regulators and operators with the RAW disposal activities carried out by SE RAW.
Within the framework of the scientific visit, a team of Bulgarian experts, led by the chief engineer of the Specialized Division “National Disposal Facility for RAW” (NDF)- Ira Stefanova, discussed with the Slovenian delegation some important issues related to: design and construction of NDF; design and development of the safety case and accompanying safety assessment at all stages of the disposal project, as well as review by the regulatory authority; licensing of NDF; participation of interested parties and consultations for the construction of NDF, etc.
The Slovenia delegation, presented their programme, for the design of a similar repository for low- and intermediate-level RAW, which construction will start in the near future. This project is the main reason that is the basis of their deepening of interest in the Bulgarian experience in relation to NDF.
As part of the program of the scientific visit, the Slovenian experts had the opportunity to visit facilities of the SE RAW in Kozloduy. They became closely acquainted with the details of the construction of the NDF at the Radiana site, as well as observed decommissioning activities in the Controlled Area of Units 1-4 of the Kozloduy NPP. During the implementation of the one-week project, time was also set aside for a visit to the Permanent Repository for RAW near the village of Novi Han.
During the final meeting of the project, questions were discussed about the similarities and differences in the Bulgarian and Slovenian approach in regarding the disposal of RAW, and topics for future cooperation were identified. The Slovenian participants expressed their satisfaction and appreciation for the experience shared by their colleagues from the Bulgarian national operator for RAW management.