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14.12.2009 10:30

ONKALO has been excavated for four kilometres

The access tunnel of the characterisation facility ONKALO, excavated into the bedrock of Olkiluoto, has advanced for four kilometres to a depth of almost 400 metres. The planned final disposal depth - 420 metres - will be reached at the beginning of next year. At that point, the application of the excavation technique and methods in the final disposal facilities will be examined.

Test and demonstration tunnels will be excavated at the final disposal depth according to the specifications and requirements of the final disposal tunnel. The primary objective is to demonstrate how the final disposal tunnels and canister holes will be executed to comply with the safety requirements.


In addition to the test and demonstration tunnels, shafts and technical facilities will be excavated deep into the bedrock. The planned excavation work will be completed by the end of 2011, at which point the access tunnel and the shafts will have reached a depth of 437 metres.


In the implementation of ONKALO, requirements set for a final disposal facility are being taken into consideration. Therefore, the planning scheme of ONKALO has been made in close co-operation with the planning of the entire final repository. The objective is that the facilities built for ONKALO can in the future be attached to the final repository as routes and auxiliary facilities.


Posiva will submit the construction license application of the final repository for spent nuclear fuel to the Government in 2012. The objective is that the first spent nuclear fuel bundles can be disposed of according to the current schedule into the Olkiluoto bedrock in 2020.

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