The Nuclear Energy Ordinance distinguishes the following categories of waste:
Art. 51 Categories of radioactive waste
For the purpose of disposal, radioactive waste is divided into the following categories:
a) high-level waste (HLW):
1. spent fuel (SF) not destined for reprocessing;
2. vitrified fission product solutions from reprocessing of spent fuel;
b) alpha-toxic waste (ATW): waste with a content of alpha-emitters exceeding a value of 20,000 Becquerels per gram of conditioned waste;
c) low- and intermediate-level waste (L/ILW): all other radioactive waste.
For disposal, Nagra allocates the waste to different repository types:
Deep geological repository for HLW/SF for spent fuel and vitrified fission product solutions from reprocessing.
Deep geological repository for low- and intermediate-level waste (L/ILW).
A preliminary allocation of the alpha-toxic waste (ATW) to the HLW or L/ILW repository is made, with the final decision being based on the results of the safety analyses for the planned sites.
No deep geological disposal is necessary for waste with short half-lives (containing nuclides with half-lives shorter than 60 days or wastes that decay to below clearance level within 30 years of their production).