Monthly Archives: February 2009

Dealing with a Rocky Flats legacy at Y-12

As part of preparations to eventually move the plant’s inventory of bomb-grade uranium into a new high-security storehouse, Y-12 workers recently checked and repackaged some enriched uranium that came to Oak Ridge from the now-defunct Rocky Flats Plant in Colorado.
The legacy material was stored in Y-12’s main warehouse (9720-5). Because the uranium came from Rocky Flats, a former plutonium parts plant, it had to be checked to make sure it didn’t bear any plutonium.

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Minter named Black Engineer of Year

Will Minter of Oak Ridge National Laboratory has received the Black Engineer of the Year Award. Minter is director of ORNL’s Asset Management and Small Business Programs Division.
The award, now in its 23rd year, is presented annually by Lockheed Martin Corp., the Council of Engineering Deans of Historically Black Colleges and Universities, and the U.S. Black Engineer & Information Technology Magazine.

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Y-12 cleanup stimulus: $250M, hundreds of jobs

Hundreds of millions of dollars from the government’s stimulus package are on the way to Oak Ridge to bolster environmental cleanup efforts and accelerate the demolition of old buildings at the Y-12 National Security Complex and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, officials said today.
“We’re going to receive over a quarter of a billion dollars of money through the EM (environmental management) program to start and accelerate the cleanup of Y-12,” Darrel Kohlhorst, the plant’s general manager, told a crowd this morning at New Hope Center.

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Again, sorry for blog confusion

Because of a small meltdown on the blogs this evening, I’ve had to repost a number of items here, and they’re not in the original order. There could be other issues, too. I’m doing my best to sort it out.
Thanks for your patience. If you haven’t visited in a while, you might want to scroll down a bit to catch up on some relatively recent posts that got reshuffled.

Impact Services acquires GeoMelt

Impact Services Inc. announced late Wednesday that it had reached “an agreement in principle” to acquire all assets of the GeoMelt business of AMEC. According to a press statement, the GeoMelt technologies are “a collection of vitrification processes that are used to safely treat and stabilize a wide variety of materials including organics, heavy metals, and radioactive contaminants.”

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How many hundreds of shipments to WIPP?

How many shipments of remote-handled transuranic waste — the hottest waste in the Oak Ridge inventory — will be going to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in New Mexico?
Well, according to the Waste Stream Profile Form put together for the Dept. of Energy’s Oak Ridge program and reportedly delivered to the state of New Mexico, there will be 685 canisters for remote-handled TRU waste already on hand and six more canisters projected. With one trip per canister, that would mean nearly 700 cross-country truck shipments.
However, Tony Buhl, the president and chief exec of EnergX, the contractor operating the Transuranic Waste Processing Center in Oak Ridge, said today that figure is too high — about double the number of RH shipments that will actually be needed.

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News on foreign nuke waste

Hers’s an Associated Press story by Brock Vergakis out of Utah:
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A federal judge is set to hear oral arguments in a lawsuit filed by a nuclear waste disposal company that says an interstate compact that includes Utah doesn’t have authority to regulate the country’s only commercial radioactive waste dump.

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FAS on Iran’s enrichment situation

The Federation of American Scientists provides some insight to recent reports that Iran may already have enough enriched uranium for a nuclear weapon.

The Federation of American Scientists analyzed recent news articles implicating that Iran hid enriched uranium during a recent inspection of physical inventory by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). FAS analysis concluded that, contrary to the headlines, Iran is not ‘hiding’ uranium and currently does not have enough material for a nuclear weapon. The IAEA report does not reveal any sudden jump in enrichment capability or even uranium inventory.

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