The Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Co. (SKB) are planning to construct a deep repository for permanent storage of spent nuclear fuel at about 450mdepth in crystalline rock in the Forsmark area, about 120 km north of Stockholm. The nuclear fuel will be contained in canisters consisting of a cast iron insert surrounded by a copper shell. The canisters will be emplaced in vertical deposition holes excavated in the floor of horizontal deposition tunnels and surrounded by a barrier of bentonite clay for isolation and mechanical protection. Given the near-field design established for the SKB repository, i.e. the shape and dimensions of repository openings, the response of the near-field rock to excavation and to the thermo-mechanical load, associated with the heat generated by the decaying fuel, will depend on the thermal and thermo-mechanical properties of the rock, the in situ stresses, the heat power characteristics of the deposited fuel and the repository layout, i.e. the geometrical arrangement of deposition tunnels and deposition holes. This paper gives a brief summary of the modeling conducted to establish thermal layout rules and to assess the thermal and thermo-mechanical evolution of the repository host rock on different scales.

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