SF GeoLogic AB

Täby, Sweden

SF GeoLogic AB

Täby, Sweden
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The Forsmark site was recently proposed by the Svensk Kärnbränslehantering AB (SKB) to serve as the potential site for construction of a future geological repository for spent high-level nuclear fuel at about 470 m depth in fractured crystalline rock. The considerations included, among other things, distance from regionally significant deformation zones with highly strained rock, lithological homogeneity, low hydraulic conductivity, groundwater salinity with an acceptable range, and lack of potential mineral resources. This report describes the calculation of transmissivity of deduced deformation zones at Forsmark and the transmissivity model used in the regional groundwater flow modeling carried out in support of the integrated site description. Besides significant decrease with increasing depth (more than four orders of magnitude over a depth of about 1 km), the calculated transmissivity values also reveal considerable spatial variability along the strikes of the zones, i.e. lateral heterogeneity (more than two orders of magnitude). A hydro-mechanical coupling is discussed, based on presented models for the tectonic evolution and the principal stress tensor. Tentatively, laboratory-scale relationships developed from normal stress experiments on a single fracture in crystalline rock can be used to estimate the maximum values of transmissivity of deduced deformation zones at Forsmark. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Stephens M.B.,Geological Survey of Sweden | Stephens M.B.,Lulea University of Technology | Follin S.,SF GeoLogic AB | Petersson J.,Norconsult AB | And 3 more authors.
Tectonophysics | Year: 2015

This paper presents a review of the data sets and methodologies used to construct deterministic models for the spatial distribution of deformation zones and intervening fracture domains in 3-D space at Forsmark, Fennoscandian Shield, Sweden. These models formed part of the investigations to characterize this site, recently proposed as a repository for the storage of spent nuclear fuel in Sweden. The pronounced spatial variability in the distribution of bedrock structures, formed under ductile (lower amphibolite- or greenschist-facies) and subsequently brittle conditions, was controlled by two factors; firstly, the multiphase reactivation, around and after 1.8. Ga, of older ductile structures with a strong anisotropy formed under higher-temperature conditions at 1.87-1.86. Ga; and, secondly, by the release of rock stresses in connection with loading and unloading cycles, after 1.6. Ga. The spatial variability in bedrock structures is accompanied by a significant heterogeneity in the hydraulic flow properties, the most transmissive fractures being sub-horizontal or gently dipping. Although the bedrock structures at Forsmark are ancient features, the present-day aperture of fractures and their hydraulic tranmissivity are inferred to be influenced by the current stress state. It is apparent that the aperture of fractures can change throughout geological time as the stress field evolves. For this reason, the assessment of the long-term (up to 100,000. years) safety of a site for the storage of spent nuclear fuel in crystalline bedrock requires an evaluation of all fractures at the site, not only the currently open fractures that are connected and conductive to groundwater flow. This study also highlights the need for an integration of structural data from the ground surface and boreholes with magnetic field and seismic reflection data with high spatial resolution, during the characterization of structures at a possible site for the storage of spent nuclear fuel in crystalline bedrock. © 2015 Elsevier B.V.

Vidstrand P.,TerraSolve AB | Follin S.,SF GeoLogic AB | Selroos J.-O.,Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Company | Selroos J.-O.,University of Stockholm | And 2 more authors.
Hydrogeology Journal | Year: 2013

On-going geological disposal programs for spent nuclear fuel have generated strong demands for investigation and characterization of deep-lying groundwater systems. Because of the long time scales for which radiological safety needs to be demonstrated in safety assessment applications, an analysis of the hydrogeological performance of the geosphere system during glacial climate conditions is needed. Groundwater flow at depth in crystalline rock during the passage of an ice-sheet margin is discussed based on performed groundwater-flow modeling of two bedrock sites, Forsmark and Laxemar, in the Fennoscandian Shield, Sweden. The modeled ice sheet mimics the Weichselian ice sheet during its last major advance and retreat over northern Europe. The paper elaborates and analyzes different choices of top boundary conditions at the ice sheet-subsurface interface (e. g. ice-sheet thickness and ice-margin velocity) and in the proglacial area (presence or lack of permafrost) and relates these choices to available groundwater-flow-model hydraulic output and prevailing conceptual hydrogeochemical models of the salinity evolution at the two sites. It is concluded that the choice of boundary conditions has a strong impact on results and that the studied sites behave differently for identical boundary conditions due to differences in their structural-hydraulic properties. © 2012 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

The impact of periglacial and glacial climate conditions on groundwater flow in fractured crystalline rock is studied by means of groundwater flow modeling of the Forsmark site, which was recently proposed as a repository site for the disposal of spent high-level nuclear fuel in Sweden. The employed model uses a thermal-hydraulically coupled approach for permafrost modeling and discusses changes in groundwater flow implied by the climate conditions found over northern Europe at different times during the last glacial cycle (Weichselian glaciation). It is concluded that discharge of particles released at repository depth occurs very close to the ice-sheet margin in the absence of permafrost. If permafrost is included, the greater part discharges into taliks in the periglacial area. During a glacial cycle, hydraulic gradients at repository depth reach their maximum values when the ice-sheet margin passes over the site; at this time, also, the interface between fresh and saline waters is distorted the most. The combined effect of advances and retreats during several glaciations has not been studied in the present work; however, the results indicate that hydrochemical conditions at depth in the groundwater flow model are almost restored after a single event of ice-sheet advance and retreat. © 2014 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Effects on groundwater flow of abandoned engineered structures in relation to a potential geological repository for spent high-level nuclear fuel in fractured crystalline rock at the Forsmark site, Sweden, are studied by means of numerical modeling. The effects are analyzed by means of particle tracking, and transport-related performance measures are calculated. The impacts of abandoned, partially open repository tunnels are studied for two situations with different climate conditions: a "temperate" climate case with present-day boundary conditions, and a generic future "glacial" climate case with an ice sheet covering the repository. Then, the impact of abandoned open boreholes drilled through the repository is studied for present-day climate conditions. It is found that open repository tunnels and open boreholes can act as easy pathways from repository level to the ground surface; hence, they can attract a considerable proportion of particles released in the model at deposition hole positions within the repository. The changed flow field and flow paths cause some changes in the studied performance measures, i.e., increased flux at the deposition holes and decreased transport lengths and flow-related transport resistances. However, these effects are small and the transport resistance values are still high. © 2014 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

The large-scale geological structure of the crystalline rock at the proposed high-level nuclear waste repository site at Forsmark, Sweden, has been classified in terms of deformation zones of elevated fracture frequency. The rock between deformation zones was divided into fracture domains according to fracture frequency. A methodology to constrain the geometric and hydraulic parameters that define a discrete fracture network (DFN) model for each fracture domain is presented. The methodology is based on flow logging and down-hole imaging in cored boreholes in combination with DFN realizations, fracture connectivity analysis and pumping test simulations. The simulations suggest that a good match could be obtained for a power law size distribution where the value of the location parameter equals the borehole radius but with different values for the shape parameter, depending on fracture domain and fracture set. Fractures around 10-100 m in size are the ones that typically form the connected network, giving inflows in the simulations. The report also addresses the issue of up-scaling of DFN properties to equivalent continuous porous medium (ECPM) bulk flow properties. Comparisons with double-packer injection tests provide confidence that the derived DFN formulation of detailed flows within individual fractures is also suited to simulating mean bulk flow properties and their spatial variability. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

The Svensk Kärnbränslehantering AB (SKB) has proposed the Forsmark site as a future repository for spent high-level nuclear fuel, involving disposal at about 470 m depth in sparsely fractured crystalline bedrock. An essential part of the completed inter-disciplinary site investigation was to develop an integrated account of the site and its regional setting, including the current state of the geosphere and the biosphere as well as natural processes affecting long-term evolution. First, this report recollects the integrated understanding and some key hydraulic characteristics of the crystalline bedrock at Forsmark along with a description of the flow model set-up and the methodology used for paleoclimatic flow modeling. Second, the protocol used for site-scale groundwater flow and solute transport modeling is demonstrated. In order to conduct a quantitative assessment of groundwater flow paths at Forsmark, the standard guide for groundwater flow modeling was elaborated on, to support both discrete and porous media flow approaches. In total, four independent types of data were used to confirm that the final groundwater flow model for the crystalline bedrock was representative of site conditions. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

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