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David Shoesmith

David Shoesmith

Department of Chemistry
The University of Western Ontario

Chair title

NSERC/Nuclear Waste Management Organization IRC in Nuclear Fuel and Waste Container Corrosion Under Waste Disposal Management Conditions

Chair program

Industrial Research Chairs program


Senior Chairholder since 2000


The long-term management of nuclear waste has been identified as an important Canadian environmental issue, and a viable nuclear industry requires a permanent solution to this problem. The primary goals of this project are to understand the corrosion performance of nuclear fuel and nuclear waste containers, and to establish the experimental database required to support the development of performance assessment models. The primary emphasis is on the redox chemistry expected to develop within a failed waste container and how this will influence corrosion of the materials inside the container: fuel, fuel cladding and carbon steel vessel.

David Shoesmith is a specialist in electrochemistry and corrosion science. Prior to holding this industrial chair, he worked for Atomic Energy of Canada Limited for 25 years. He has been an active researcher in the Canadian nuclear fuel waste management program since 1980 and is a recognized international expert on nuclear waste form and container issues. His research is currently funded by waste management organizations in Canada, Sweden and the United States, and he has served on nuclear waste program review boards in the USA, Switzerland and France.

The research performed under the auspices of this chair is essential for the maintenance and further growth of a viable and environmentally acceptable Canadian nuclear electricity generating industry. All nations involved in the nuclear generation of electricity have this problem, and the Canadian nuclear waste management program is part of a concerted and collaborative international effort to solve the problem. Since 40 to 50 percent of the electricity generated in Ontario is from nuclear sources, and the construction of additional nuclear capacity is under consideration, this province has a particularly large stake in the issue. In addition to addressing this key issue, the program will develop highly skilled personnel in electrochemistry and corrosion science valuable to all sectors of the nuclear industry. In addition, these skills are adaptable to many other industries involved in energy generation and storage, resource development and manufacturing.

This program is sponsored by the Nuclear Waste Management Organization (Toronto) whose mission is to develop and implement, collaboratively with Canadians, the management approach for the long term care of Canada's used nuclear fuel. This approach must be socially acceptable, technically sound, environmentally responsible and economically feasible.


  • Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO)

Contact information

Department of Chemistry
The University of Western Ontario
1151 Richmond Street
London, Ontario
N6A 5B7

Tel.: 519-661-2111, ext. 86366
Fax: 519-661-3022
Email: dwshoesm@uwo.ca


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