Japan's 2012 plutonium management report

Japan's Atomic Energy Commission released its annual report "The Current Situation of Plutonium Management in Japan" that describes the status of its civilian plutonium stock as of the end of 2012.

According to the document, as of 31 December 2012, Japan had 44,241 kg of separated unirradiated plutonium, of which 9,295 kg was stored in Japan and 34,946 kg was stored abroad. Respective 2011 numbers were 44,254 kg, of which 9,295 kg in Japan and 34,959 kg abroad. The only change since 2011 is the decrease of the amount of plutonium held abroad by 13 kg.

Below is the breakdown of 9,295 kg of separated plutonium in Japan:

  • 4,363 kg at reprocessing facilities (3,612 kg at Rokkasho and 751 kg at Tokai). Of this amount, 951 kg is in nitrate and 3,412 kg in oxide form). This amount would be reported as 4.4 tonnes in INFCIRC/549,
  • 4,488 kg in unirradiated MOX fuel. 3,364 kg at MOX fabrication facilities (both in oxide and in fresh assemblies), 959 kg in fresh MOX fuel at power plants, and 165 kg at two research reactors - Monju and Joyo. In INFCIRC/549 this plutonium will be reported in two categories - as 2.9 tonnes in fuel fabrication process and 1.6 tonnes in fresh MOX (for the total of 4.5 tonnes), and
  • 444 kg at R&D facilties (critical assemblies). This amount will be reported as 0.4 tonnes "held elsewhere" in the INFCIRC/549 submission.

The 34,946 kg of separated plutonium outside of Japan were located in two countries (the decrease takes into account decay of Pu-241):

  • 17,052 kg in the United Kingdom (17,028 kg in 2011), and
  • 17,895 kg in France (17,931 kg in 2011).