News at Princeton

Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014

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Study: High-density storage of nuclear waste heightens terrorism risks

A space-saving method for storing spent nuclear fuel has dramatically heightened the risk of a catastrophic radiation release in the event of a terrorist attack, according to a study initiated at Princeton.

Terrorists targeting the high-density storage systems used at nuclear power plants throughout the nation could cause contamination problems "significantly worse than those from Chernobyl," the study found.

The study authors, a multi-institutional team of researchers led by Frank von Hippel of Princeton, called on the U.S. Congress to mandate the construction of new facilities to house spent fuel in less risky configurations and estimated a cost of $3.5 billion to $7 billion for the project.

The paper is scheduled to be published in the spring in the journal Science and Global Security.

Further details are available in a news release .

Contact: Lauren Robinson-Brown (609) 258-3601

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