(GRS 223) Heater Test in the Opalinus Clay of the Mont Terri URL

Norbert Jockwer, Klaus Wieczorek

Beside salt and granite, clay formations are investigated as potential host rocks for disposing radioactive waste. In Switzerland in the canton Jura close to the city of St. Ursanne, an underground laboratory was built in the vicinity of the reconnaissance
gallery of a motorway tunnel. Since 1995, a consortium of 12 international organisations is running this laboratory for investigating the suitability of the Opalinus clay formation with regard to disposal of radioactive waste.
In 1999, the Heater Experiment B (HE-B) was started for investigating the coupled thermo-hydro-mechanical (THM) processes of the Opalinus clay in interaction with the bentonite buffer. The principal contractors of this project were the Bundesanstalt für
Geowissenschaften und Rohstoffe (BGR), the Empresa Nacional de Residuos Radiactivos S. A. (ENRESA), the Gesellschaft für Anlagen- und Reaktorsicherheit (GRS) mbH, and the National Cooperative for the Disposal of Radioactive Waste (NAGRA).