We carry out our work using six workpackages that are listed below:
Work Package 1 (Biological Processes in Geological Repositories): Will address and prioritise the major science questions in biological processes of relevance to the establishment and long-term integrity of geological repositories. Areas of investigation will include, but not be limited to: role of organisms in deterioration of storage materials; role of organisms in biomineralising and facilitating retardation of wastes; role of organisms in production of gas in geological repositories.
Work Package 2 (Geochemical Processes in Geological Repositories): Will address and prioritise the major geochemical questions of relevance to the establishment and long-term integrity of geological repositories. Areas of investigation will include: geochemical processes in storage materials and back-fill within geological repositories over time; geological context of geochemical processes; changes in geochemical environments over time; effects of changing geochemistry on waste storage and disposal (particularly for radioactive waste oxidation state).
Work Package 3: Geophysical Processes in Geological Repositories: Will address and prioritise the major geophysical questions of relevance to the establishment and long-term integrity of geological repositories. Topics will include transport of fluids in porous media and its effects on the repository stability, rock movement, modelling of CO2 storage and wave propagation in fluid filled porous media, transport of muons through the rock and repository for use in monitoring, radiation emission from nuclear waste and its detection.
Cross-cutting science theme work package
Work Package 4 (Long-term Environmental Changes and Effects on Geological Repositories): Will address the effects of long-term environmental change over the geological life-time of repositories on waste storage. Areas of investigation will include: effects of sea-level rise, temperature changes, earthquakes, glaciation and other perturbations on geochemical and biological processes occurring in geological repositories; means to predict effects of environmental change on geochemical and biological processes; effects of natural versus anthropogenic changes on processes occurring in geological repositories; influence of geological substrate on geochemical and biological processes occurring in geological repositories.
Cross-cutting technology theme work packages
Work Package 5 (Monitoring Methods for Geological Repositories): This work package will have a special focus on technical means of monitoring geochemical and biological processes in geological repositories. Areas of investigation will include: novel miniaturised methods for monitoring geochemical and biological activity; methods of long-term logging and monitoring of geological repositories; novel methods of measuring gases and elements (cations, anions) in situ in geological repositories; muon tomography of CO2 emplacement and migration; radiation detection; monitoring methods and new devices for short and long-term monitoring.
Work Package 6 (Planetary Science/Astronomy/Particle Physics Technology Translation): This work package will focus on how we can take advantage of instrumentation in planetary sciences, astronomy and particle physics to monitor geological repositories. Areas of investigation will include: miniaturised Raman, life detection methods, XRD, etc used for Mars exploration; use of technology in astronomy (e.g. spectroscopy) for monitoring atmospheric composition of repositories; identifying new technologies that benefit from high technology/miniaturisation in planetary science, astronomy and particle physics for monitoring geological repositories; remote sensing of repository effects (e.g. vegetation stress).