Military Aviation A forum for the professionals who fly military hardware. Also for the backroom boys and girls who support the flying and maintain the equipment, and without whom nothing would ever leave the ground. All armies, navies and air forces of the world equally welcome here.

AUKUS

Old 15th Mar 2023, 07:04
  #1301 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: A better place.
Posts: 2,318
Received 23 Likes on 15 Posts
Originally Posted by ORAC
There have been long discussions with the IAEA over how such a deal might be done under the terms of the NPT. The resolution was that Australia will not undertake any nuclear fuel fabrication or reprocessing, rather the reactors will be provided as sealed units an£ returned in the same state at the end of their operational life.

Which means that, if manufactured in the UK, the reactors will be returned to the UK for defuelling, storage and eventual dismantling - presumably by sending the boats to be moored alongside together with the 27 all ready awaiting disposal.

So, no, Australia won’t be involved in handing HEU fuel rods.

Guessing, I would think, to keep with the NPT, the terms of the contract will involved the reactor cores being leased to Australia for the life of the boat, rather than sold, and then returned.

https://www.navylookout.com/project-...nches-forward/

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/submarin...ntling-project

https://www.iaea.org/newscenter/pres...s-announcement


https://www.iaea.org/sites/default/f...inf2022-20.pdf

““it is proposed that Australia would be provided with complete, welded power units.”


Well that's interesting, because there was definitely commentary down here about the need to dispose of `nuclear waste' as part of AUKUS and that said waste would be dealt with remotely - possibly on the Defence Estate.
So if HEU rods will be returned to the UK - what other waste is there to dispose of?
tartare is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2023, 07:18
  #1302 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: aus
Posts: 1,264
Likes: 0
Received 91 Likes on 59 Posts
Originally Posted by tartare
Well that's interesting, because there was definitely commentary down here about the need to dispose of `nuclear waste' as part of AUKUS and that said waste would be dealt with remotely - possibly on the Defence Estate.
So if HEU rods will be returned to the UK - what other waste is there to dispose of?
Yes marles the defence minister and deputy PM said they will be disposed of in australia at an unspecificed location, he was explicitly talking about the virginia's cant image they would handle AUKUS any different
rattman is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2023, 08:25
  #1303 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: back out to Grasse
Posts: 557
Received 28 Likes on 12 Posts
For those of us who don't have a seat at the table.

AUKUS Press Briefing:

Fact Sheet

IG
Imagegear is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2023, 08:36
  #1304 (permalink)  
Ecce Homo! Loquitur...
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Peripatetic
Posts: 16,985
Received 1,358 Likes on 619 Posts
So if HEU rods will be returned to the UK - what other waste is there to dispose of?
Low and intermediate waste, as per my link 2 above. For ILW you’re talking about the reactor pressure vessel and associated steam pipe work etc.

If the promises to the IAEA are observed, then the reactors will - as a minimum - have to be defuelled in the USA/UK. It would then be possible to transport the boats back to Australia for long term storage and dismantling. ​​​​​​​

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/submarin...ntling-project

“….UK submarines are powered by nuclear reactors. During submarine operations, nuclear reactions cause radioactive substances to be generated in the pipework and components within the reactor compartment. This requires managing after the submarine leaves service.….

Once the nuclear fuel is removed and transported to Sellafield for storage the submarine can formally enter the
SDP.…

The three-stage dismantling method allows the less hazardous parts of a submarine’s nuclear reactor core, known as Low-Level Radioactive Waste (
LLW) to be removed first, followed by removal of the Reactor Pressure Vessel which is classed as Intermediate Level Radioactive Waste (ILW).”
ORAC is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2023, 08:42
  #1305 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: australia
Posts: 377
Received 28 Likes on 17 Posts
I wouldn't worry too much. I'm sure there are a few countries. That will buy old HEU and subs, to scrap for us. Or perhaps we open a 'glow in the dark' marine, diving attraction
golder is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2023, 09:12
  #1306 (permalink)  
Ecce Homo! Loquitur...
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Peripatetic
Posts: 16,985
Received 1,358 Likes on 619 Posts
That fact sheet seems internally contradictory. Quote:

As part of this commitment to nuclear stewardship, Australia has committed to managing all radioactive waste generated through its nuclear-powered submarine program, including spent nuclear fuel, in Australia.”…..

”Australia will not enrich uranium or reprocess spent fuel as part of this program”…


To be clear, spent HEU fuel rods contain unspent weapons grade highly enriched uranium and plutonium. The idea of storing spent rods unprocessed indefinitely in Australia seems mad, particularly as there are other uses for it elsewhere. That’s ignoring the reaction by the other NPT signatory nations and the security risks.

https://nonproliferation.org/civilian-heu-france/

ORAC is offline  
The following users liked this post:
Old 15th Mar 2023, 09:58
  #1307 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Ferrara
Posts: 8,186
Received 319 Likes on 185 Posts
Letters (contradictory of course) in todays Times:-

Sir, Britain does not have the capacity or effective leadership to provide the huge level of support required by Australia to build its own nuclear submarine fleet (“PM strikes submarine deal to face new threat”, Mar 14). The performance of the Submarine Delivery Agency has been abysmal. Astute class submarines are being delivered late by BAE Systems; HMS Vanguard’s refit by Babcock has taken more than seven years; and none of our 22 decommissioned nuclear submarines has been dismantled, which is disgraceful. The in-service date for HMS Dreadnought was 2024 but is now the early 2030s. It is also astonishing that the new director-general (nuclear), Madelaine McTernan, has no previous nuclear expertise; nor did her predecessors, in spite of being responsible for submarine procurement, disposal and infrastructure. This collective failure of leadership has resulted in significant extra cost and loss of submarine availability. It appears that those advising the prime minister on Aukus have focused on the strategic benefits and economies of scale and not on the substantial risks of delivery, given the UK’s woeful performance and Australia’s lack of nuclear submarine expertise. This is not a winning combination. This UK and Australian element of Aukus is high risk for both countries. A bilateral-only agreement between the US and Australia would stand a far greater chance of success.
Rear Admiral (ret’d) Philip Mathias
UK director of nuclear policy 2005-08 and Trident value for money review 2010; Southsea, Hants

Sir, The Aukus deal is unusual in being a British defence project with virtually no downside. It sustains and develops Britain’s successful submarine industries, creates the potent sort of partnership that Brexit was meant to stimulate, and best of all Australia is paying for most of it. Of course, it might turn into Canberra’s HS2, but at least for now, it is an example of proper, multilateral strategic thinking. That said, it does not compensate for the bigger strategic hole in British defence policy regarding our own neighbourhood: Europe. The government cannot use Aukus as a glossy wrapper for underwhelming news on defence spending and the “refresh” of the 2021 integrated review. Our immediate security is at stake in the Ukraine war. Analysts follow the money, not the words. And not enough of it is being devoted to address this more immediate strategic hole in our defence policy.
Professor Michael Clarke
Director of the Royal United Services Institute 2007-15

Sir, Having served in Royal Navy submarines in Australia in the 1960s I am acutely aware of the exciting prospect of the introduction of the new fleet of submarines. However, I hope the navy and the MoD will take steps to discourage our submarine personnel from imitating our NHS personnel, who seem to be deserting Britain as soon as their training is complete. The attraction to a young person to a life in Western Australia is obvious, as my daughter, a consultant psychiatrist in Perth, will affirm.
Captain Richard Wraith RN
Former nuclear submarine CO; Tavistock, Devon

Sir, Whether we are doubling the size of our nuclear submarine fleet, or returning it to the size it was before successive defence cuts halved it, is possibly a matter of which eye the Nelsonian telescope is raised to.
Rear Admiral Ric Cheadle
Yelverton, Devon
Asturias56 is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2023, 10:16
  #1308 (permalink)  
Ecce Homo! Loquitur...
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Peripatetic
Posts: 16,985
Received 1,358 Likes on 619 Posts
Returning to the contradictory statements about handling the reactor fuel rods.

The IAEA in both their communications state that they have been assured that the reactors will be provided as sealed and welded units. This is repeated in the AUKUS briefing fact sheet. Quote:

The United Kingdom and United States intend to provide Australia with nuclear material in complete, welded power units that will not require refueling during their lifetime;”

I cannot see how this is compatible with the statement that:

As part of this commitment to nuclear stewardship, Australia has committed to managing all radioactive waste generated through its nuclear-powered submarine program, including spent nuclear fuel, in Australia.”

Opening the reactors in Australia to extract the fuel at the end of life would seem to drive a coach and horses through the undertaking to the IAEA/NPT. I mean, “they’re sealed and welded - until we open them up to get the stuff inside out”…

The only other possibility would be that the boats would be defuelled and the fuel rods extracted for reprocessed in U.K./USA into LEU/MOX or solid/vitrified form and then sent back to Australia for storage - which would seem unduly complicated and perverse.

I come back to the reactor cores/fuel rods being returned to the UK/USA and the waste described being just to the LLW and ILW contained in the pressure vessel and pipe work.
ORAC is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2023, 10:19
  #1309 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: australia
Posts: 377
Received 28 Likes on 17 Posts
Originally Posted by Asturias56
Sir, Having served in Royal Navy submarines in Australia in the 1960s I am acutely aware of the exciting prospect of the introduction of the new fleet of submarines. However, I hope the navy and the MoD will take steps to discourage our submarine personnel from imitating our NHS personnel, who seem to be deserting Britain as soon as their training is complete. The attraction to a young person to a life in Western Australia is obvious, as my daughter, a consultant psychiatrist in Perth, will affirm.
Captain Richard Wraith RN
Former nuclear submarine CO; Tavistock, Devon
That's good news, He thinks australia won't have any manning issues. We have been scratching our heads down here. Wondering where the crew will come from.
golder is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2023, 10:20
  #1310 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Ferrara
Posts: 8,186
Received 319 Likes on 185 Posts
Maybe there's a secret clause whereby Australia takes ALL UK nuclear waste for storage.......... lots of space after all .....
Asturias56 is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2023, 10:26
  #1311 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: aus
Posts: 1,264
Likes: 0
Received 91 Likes on 59 Posts
Originally Posted by golder
That's good news, He thinks australia won't have any manning issues. We have been scratching our heads down here. Wondering where the crew will come from.
Crew currently isn't an issue and hasn't been on the collins for years. There is allegedly (by the west Australian newspaper) 900 submariners in the service atm. When my friend left in 2018 there was actually an issue that a lot of the squids were leaving for the surface navy as there wasn't enough sea time available for the submariners that they had.
rattman is offline  
The following users liked this post:
Old 15th Mar 2023, 10:54
  #1312 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: A better place.
Posts: 2,318
Received 23 Likes on 15 Posts
Bleating has started:
https://www.smh.com.au/politics/fede...15-p5csdg.html
If ORAC is right - the States are moaning about storing pipes and casings that probably emit about as much radiation as the average granite worktop...
tartare is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2023, 10:59
  #1313 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: australia
Posts: 377
Received 28 Likes on 17 Posts
Originally Posted by tartare
Bleating has started:
https://www.smh.com.au/politics/fede...15-p5csdg.html
If ORAC is right - the States are moaning about storing pipes and casings that probably emit about as much radiation as the average granite worktop...
If you think that is bad. Try suggesting a nuclear power station. It's lucky that subs are under the water and you can't see them.
golder is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2023, 14:47
  #1314 (permalink)  
Ecce Homo! Loquitur...
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Peripatetic
Posts: 16,985
Received 1,358 Likes on 619 Posts
Just sayin’…..

Powerful article on state of Canadian submarine plans. Without urgent action, Canada may soon cease to operate a submarine force.

Canadian government noncommittal on new submarines as allies push forward with nuclear fleet plans

https://nationalpost.com/news/politi...ar-fleet-plans

Canadian government noncommittal on new submarines as allies push forward with nuclear fleet plans

Military commanders and experts say subs are critical to defending Canada, including in the Arctic, as Russia and China build up their own underwater fleets
ORAC is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2023, 20:16
  #1315 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: England
Posts: 342
Received 6 Likes on 6 Posts
Originally Posted by rattman
They would be a good partner and the other benefits and programs would be an asset to all the other participants, but they have expressed zero interest in nuclear subs and not sure the cost benefit of them would be worth it
Understood.
But up to relative recently neither had Australia.
Japan is at least as exposed to Chinese expansionism, Taiwan. It was just a thought.
Buster15 is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2023, 22:13
  #1316 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Wherever I can log on.
Posts: 1,862
Received 6 Likes on 5 Posts
Originally Posted by Buster15
Understood.
But up to relative recently neither had Australia.
Japan is at least as exposed to Chinese expansionism, Taiwan. It was just a thought.
The area that Japanese submarines are required to operate is effectively on their doorstep step so the slower transit speed of their diesel electric submarines is not an issue. They are currently building very advanced submarines with the latest battery technology so I believe they won’t be interested in nuclear powered submarines.
Going Boeing is offline  
Old 16th Mar 2023, 00:11
  #1317 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: A better place.
Posts: 2,318
Received 23 Likes on 15 Posts
Gosh - watching Keating last night on 7:30 on AUKUS was a lot to stomach.
A once great man utterly out of touch... does he not get that the most likely scenario for Chinese aggression against Australia is not a Chinese invasion of Australia as he asserts, but limited conventional strikes on Australian and US assets that might support defense of Taiwan i.e. Pine Gap, and then all bases in the top end.
They're never going to invade.
Nuclear powered, conventionally armed submarines acting in concert with their US peers certainly would factor into the Chinese assessment of whether or not to strike Australian targets.
The man's ad hominem personal insults and schoolyard name calling might have played well in the 90s, but today it undermines any credibility, and puts him in the same league as another prominent political figure whose first stop is abuse.
Newsroom contacts tell me they laugh before getting him on the phone for a `crazy man quote.'


tartare is offline  
The following 3 users liked this post by tartare:
Old 16th Mar 2023, 10:17
  #1318 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Ferrara
Posts: 8,186
Received 319 Likes on 185 Posts
Why would China hit targets in Australia - its further away than Finland. I think Rota in Spain is closer to China than Darwin.
Asturias56 is offline  
Old 16th Mar 2023, 10:42
  #1319 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Portsmouth
Posts: 509
Received 152 Likes on 81 Posts
Originally Posted by ORAC
Just sayin’…..



Powerful article on state of Canadian submarine plans. Without urgent action, Canada may soon cease to operate a submarine force.

Canadian government noncommittal on new submarines as allies push forward with nuclear fleet plans

https://nationalpost.com/news/politi...ar-fleet-plans

Canadian government noncommittal on new submarines as allies push forward with nuclear fleet plans

Military commanders and experts say subs are critical to defending Canada, including in the Arctic, as Russia and China build up their own underwater fleets
They are really struggling with the U-boats.
Not_a_boffin is offline  
Old 16th Mar 2023, 11:21
  #1320 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: australia
Posts: 377
Received 28 Likes on 17 Posts
Originally Posted by Asturias56
Why would China hit targets in Australia - its further away than Finland. I think Rota in Spain is closer to China than Darwin.
Maybe to try and take out the military equipment, in the US proxy state? That the US has forward deployed here. It's not easy for the US, running a hegemonic empire.
golder is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.