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In the nuclear industry, safety considerations rely on our ability to understand and control the behaviour of the relevant materials over a range of length and time scales.
In the aftermath of a nuclear reactor accident, understanding the release of fission products from the fuel is key.
To design reliable and safe geological repositories it is critical to understand how the characteristics of spent nuclear fuel evolve with time, and how this affects the storage environment.
The incident at Fukushima Daiichi brought materials in the nuclear industry into the spotlight. Nature Materials talks to Tatsuo Shikama, Director of the International Research Centre for Nuclear Materials, Institute for Materials Research, Tohoku University, about the current situation.
The finding of a sharp interface between a chemically attacked surface and the pristine bulk in a borosilicate glass is at odds with the widely held diffusion-based mechanisms of glass durability.
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