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Nuclear & Uranium

Spent Nuclear Fuel

Release date: March 30, 2021
Next release date: December 2024

Spent nuclear fuel data are collected by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) for the Department of Energy's Office of Standard Contract Management (Office of the General Counsel) on the Form GC-859, Nuclear Fuel Data Survey. The data include detailed characteristics of spent nuclear fuel discharged from commercial nuclear power plants in the United States.

EIA collected data on spent nuclear fuels annually from 1983 through 1995. Since 1996 EIA collected this data three times. This latest data cover all spent nuclear fuel discharged from and stored at commercial sites before December 31, 2017. Summary tables are provided below. Contact Bonnie Gajewski to request access to the detailed data.

Table 1. U.S. spent nuclear fuel discharged and stored at commercial sites
  number of assemblies
Reactor type 1968 through
June 30, 2013
1968 through
December 31, 2017
Boiling-water reactor 139,676 157,681 18,005
Pressurized-water reactor 104,885 119,198 14,313
Total 244,561 276,879 32,318
  metric tons of uranium (MTU)
Boiling-water reactor 24,854.5 28,077.3 3,222.8
Pressurized-water reactor 45,446.3 51,747.8 6,301.5
Total 70,300.8 79,825.1 9,524.3
Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration, Form GC-859, Nuclear Fuel Data Survey (2018)
Notes: A number of assemblies discharged before 1972, which were reprocessed, are not included in this table (no data are available for assemblies reprocessed before 1972). This table shows only assemblies reported on Form GC-859.
Totals may not equal sum of components because of independent rounding.

More spent fuel tables:
Table 2. Nuclear power plant data as of December 31, 2017
Table 3. Annual commercial spent fuel discharges and burnup, 1968–2017