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Breakthrough Swiss tech cuts radioactive waste in nuclear plants by 80%

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By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: Swiss startup Transmutex has developed a technology that reduces radioactive waste from nuclear plants by 80%
• This breakthrough technology, known as nuclear transmutation, converts long-lived radioactive isotopes into shorter-lived or stable ones
• Switzerland’s national body for radioactive waste disposal, Nagra, supports the technology after thorough review

🔭 The context: Nuclear waste remains radioactive for thousands of years, posing environmental and health risks
• Transmutex's technology aims to cut the duration of radioactivity to less than 500 years
• Currently, a large portion of nuclear waste is stored in inactive plants, with significant quantities at sites like the Sellafield plant in the UK

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: Reducing radioactive waste enhances the safety and feasibility of nuclear energy, a low-emission power source
• This could alleviate one of the major drawbacks of nuclear energy and reduce its environmental impact
• It aligns with global efforts to manage waste and promote sustainable energy

⏭️ What's next: Finland is building the world’s first long-term nuclear waste disposal facility, set to be completed mid-decade
• The success of this facility and Transmutex’s technology could reshape nuclear waste management globally
• The energy crisis and climate goals are driving increased investment in nuclear energy worldwide

💬 One quote: “The successful management of radioactive waste and spent nuclear fuel underpins the peaceful use of nuclear technology in all its facets” (Mikhail Chudakov, IAEA Deputy Director General)

📈 One stat: Nuclear power provides about 10% of global electricity, rising to almost 20% in advanced economies

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