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A UK repository concept currently under consideration for the disposal of intermediate-level radioactive waste and some low-level waste not suitable for surface disposal involves using large quantities of cementitious materials for construction, grouting, waste containers, waste isolation matrix and buffer/backfill. CO2 generated from the degradation of organic material in the waste will result in cement carbonation and associated mineralogical changes. Hydraulic and gas permeability tests were performed on Nirex Reference Vault Backfill (NRVB) cement at 40 °C and either 4 or 8 MPa. Carbonation reactions using CO2 gas halved the permeability of the NRVB under simulated repository...

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