Research reactor FR 2

FR 2 was the first German-designed reactor to be built in the Federal Republic of Germany. It went into operation in March 1961. It was a tank reactor fuelled by natural uranium (and later by uranium oxide enriched to 2%) and with heavy water as a moderator and primary coolant. FR 2 was used as a neutron source for basic experiments in the field of neutron physics, for fuel development and for material research. Radioisotopes for nuclear medicine were also produced. After more than 20 years of operation and more than 100,000 operating hours, FR 2 was shut down on 21 December 1981. Its current state was reached by the end of 1996; the reactor block is in a safe enclosure. This means that the remaining radioactive components are located within a sealed enclosure. All of the buildings that were no longer needed underwent a clearance measurement, were released from the requirements of the German Atomic Energy Act and were demolished. Today, the reactor building is used for an exhibition about the development of nuclear technology in Germany.

Dismantling of FR2

The fuel assemblies were contained in an aluminium tank surrounded by a steel tank. Due to the dose rates of the reactor components, it will not be possible in the foreseeable future to manually dismantle them, also taking into account the radioactive decay that has occurred in the meantime. 
All reactor tank components will be disassembled, broken down, transported and packaged on a remote basis at a later date. The dismantling of the activated part of the biological shield will also take place remotely.

Before the process of operational dismantling can begin, infrastructural facilities need to be reinforced and supplemented. The entire upper section to be dismantled around the biological shield will be provided with an enclosure to protect against the spread of contamination. Components will be disassembled using techniques that have already proven themselves during remote dismantling of the multi-purpose research reactor MPRR and KTE’s other dismantling projects. Once the procedure has been worked out in detail, approval can be applied for. Initial planning for this has already started. A date for the commencement of further dismantling has not yet been set.