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Toxic Heritage: Italian National Repository of Radioactive Waste

Fidan Mammadova

Toxic Heritage: Italian National Repository of Radioactive Waste.

Rel. Giovanni Corbellini. Politecnico di Torino, Corso di laurea magistrale in Architettura Costruzione Città, 2021

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Since the beginning of the XX century, scientific and technological development in the nuclear field has led to extensive applications in research, medicine, industry and in the generation of electricity by nuclear fission. Collectively with numerous other human activities, these practices generate hazardous waste, or, specifically, radioactive waste. The most important challenge relates to the question “What is being done with radioactive waste?” Apparently, this type of waste requires special management in order to guarantee the safety and protection of all living organisms and the environment. The unique feature of radioactive waste lays in its very long isolation from humans and the environment until it no longer presents a danger and risk. The period of isolation may range from a hundred to thousands of years. Therefore, safety must be ensured not only for the present generations but also for the future ones. “This is at the same time both an impossible and necessary task.” Notwithstanding, the problem of radioactive waste management is not only limited to technical and engineering issues: the social, cultural and psychological ones are equally important. The question “Is nuclear power safe?” is raised often. People know the score of the terrifying effects of an atomic bomb. Although they recognise that a nuclear reactor is not the same as a nuclear weapon, they associate both with horrific consequences and are suspicious because both involve fission and radioactivity. Predominantly, people perceive radiation as a mystery. When these ideas are combined with Murphy’s law, which says that “If anything can go wrong, it will”, it is easy to understand why so many people are uncomfortable and frightened by everything related to the nuclear field. This prejudgment also extends to radioactive waste. Unfortunately, the public awareness of nuclear science leaves much to be desired. Much of what is said or written is rhetoric intended either to frighten or to soothe. Debaters exaggerate in order to convince rather than to inform. Subsequently, the public is often confused by conflicting statements about nuclear energy and the problem of nuclear waste. On the basis of the abovementioned, it has proven to be vitally important to build a sense of public trust in the management of radioactive waste. This is not to deny or ignore real dangers posed by radioactive material but more to look at these dangers from a different perspective. Using the exploration of the terms ‘waste’ and ‘nuclear’ as a point of departure, here emerges the general understanding of ‘radioactive waste’ and the significance of its non-radiological aspects. This thesis is an attempt to explore radioactive waste, the ways of its management and its long-term impact from social, cultural and psychological points of view. This will create a basis to achieve the main purpose of the work, which lays in providing an architectural proposal for the Italian National Nuclear Waste Repository. The architectural project tries to unfold firstly, a wide range of aspects concerning different types of communication with future generations, the transmission of knowledge and memory, monumentality, and secondly, several contradictions, such as fear and desire, control and democracy.

Relators: Giovanni Corbellini
Academic year: 2021/22
Publication type: Electronic
Number of Pages: 89
Uncontrolled Keywords: Rifiuti radioattivi Patrimonio tossico Archivio Deposito in superficie Deposito Nazionale e Parco Tecnologico Rifiuti a basso livello, Paura e desiderio , Generazioni di oggi e di domani Spazio e tempo Indole umana Paesaggio ferito Monumento per il futuro Radioactive waste (Toxic) Heritage Archive; Near-surface repository; National Deposit & Technological Park (Very) Low-level waste Fear e desire Present e future generations Space e time Human-nature Landscape scar Monument for the future
Corso di laurea: Corso di laurea magistrale in Architettura Costruzione Città
Classe di laurea: New organization > Master science > LM-04 - ARCHITECTURE AND ARCHITECTURAL ENGINEERING
Aziende collaboratrici: UNSPECIFIED
URI: http://webthesis.biblio.polito.it/id/eprint/21036
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