In this month’s issue: »

February 22, 2013 – 11:01 pm |

Often, developers are asked by clients to develop software interfaces that connect external devices to current databases

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February 22, 2013 – 10:48 pm |

A frequently asked question is whether nuclear decommissioning has reached technological maturity. A generally accepted definition of technological maturity is given as:

“A mature technology is a technology that has been in use for long enough that most of its initial faults and inherent problems have been removed or reduced by further development…One of the key indicators of a mature technology is the ease of use for both non-experts and professionals. Another indicator is a reduction in the rate of new breakthrough advances related to it—whereas inventions related to a (popular) immature technology are usually rapid and diverse, and may change the whole use paradigm—advances to a mature technology are usually incremental improvements only.”

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February 22, 2013 – 10:40 pm |

On September 30, 1999, Japan experienced the second worst civilian radiation exposure in its history at the Tokaimura fuels facility. Two technicians were performing routine work conducted in a similar manner for over the past seven years when a previously determined ‘impossible criticality event’ became an inevitability. The accident claimed two lives and exposed over 300,000 people living in proximity to the plant.[1] In little over a decade later, the worst nuclear materials accident occurred 250 miles away at the Fukushima Daiichi fuels storage facility, with the structural and biological damage already exceeding the $70 billion mark. Though the facilities differ in terms of their mission and scope of work, a common root cause was that both facilities either provided no training in an important area, such as the absence of fissile material handling fundamentals at Tokaimura, and the training provided was deemed ineffective.[2] Both facilities had a training department that at some point worked to an approved training plan. So, what happened?

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February 22, 2013 – 10:28 pm |

An agreement between the Department of Energy (DOE), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) required the operational closure of Tanks 18 and 19 by December 2012. Both tanks underwent extensive waste removal that included waste removal, specialized mechanical cleaning, and working to isolate the tanks from all external systems, all leading to regulatory confirmation that the tanks were ready for stabilization.

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Magnox Signs £200 Million Contract for Waste Containers

January 16, 2014 – 7:41 am |

Magnox has signed framework contracts worth over £200 million for the supply of robust, transportable self-shielded waste containers to store various types of intermediate level waste (ILW), generated during the operational and early decommissioning phases of the UK’s Magnox nuclear power stations.

The six-year contract with three suppliers (Croft Associates Ltd, Chester-Simplex, and Siempelkamp Nukleartechnik GMBH) is in addition to the existing arrangements with GNS Ltd and will increase security of supply for the waste containers, which are central to Magnox’s strategy for decommissioning and delivering eight of the ten nuclear sites into care and maintenance.

The frameworks, which will also be available to other site license companies (SLCs) in the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority’s estate, will help develop the supply chain in the UK and will provide a strong platform for SME’s to enter into the market.

It has been calculated that Magnox will require more than 2,000 of these packages which, once filled, will be stored in purpose built facilities at nuclear sites until the UK’s national repository becomes available.

Magnox Commercial Director, Dr Peter Walkden, said: “Having the framework available for these ILW containers is a major step forward for Magnox and the whole of the UK’s nuclear decommissioning industry.”

“This type of contract offers many real benefits, including increased value for money, improved security of supply and it opens up programs of work and increased opportunities for the UK supply chain – including SMEs (Small and Medium-sized Enterprises).”

Peter Welch, Lead Contract Manager for the NDA, added: “Diversification of supply for this contract will support development of the decommissioning market. We welcome this opportunity for the SLCs to deliver improved value and, at the same time, strengthen the supply chain.”

The first orders will be for 50 containers from each supplier and will be placed, as part of the framework, early in 2014.

Vista Engineering Technologies Receives ISO 9001 Certification

January 15, 2014 – 9:22 am |

The company underwent a five-day audit of its quality management system at the offices in Richland, Washington, US and Loveland, Colorado, US, by an accredited certification body and received no findings

Magnox Employees First to Graduate with Certificate of Nuclear Professionalism

January 15, 2014 – 9:12 am |

Launched in January 2012, the CoNP is an 18 month program developed in partnership between the National Skills Academy for Nuclear and The Open University. The CoNP has been designed in partnership with the industry to support new entrants as they develop their knowledge of the nuclear sector

Doosan Keltbray Consortium Chosen for Major Decommissioning Project

January 14, 2014 – 9:27 am |

The Doosan Keltbray Consortium has been selected as preferred bidder for vital nuclear decommissioning work at Magnox’s Trawsfynydd Nuclear Power Station in North Wales

Register Now to Apply for Share of £13 Million Decommissioning R&D Funding

January 14, 2014 – 8:02 am |

NDA & public bodies open opportunities for UK businesses, offering £13 million for new tech covering new build, current operations & decommissioning.

Sullivan Makes Progress on Air Force Remediation Program

January 14, 2014 – 7:55 am |

The performance objectives of the task order is to implement environmental cleanup remedies at a total of 79 sites located at Dobbins Air Reserve Base…

“Cradle to Grave” Waste Tracking and Management System

January 10, 2014 – 9:02 am |

AttentionIT’s eMWaste Primary is the base software suite for generating, profiling, characterizing, inventorying, processing, overpacking, packaging, and shipping all waste streams.

PacTec and Surus Inversa Collaborate on Customized Waste Transport Packaging for Spain

January 10, 2014 – 8:44 am |

The companies will work cooperatively on designing, engineering and developing cost-effective, quality products for both disposable and reusable applications….

Doosan Keltbray Consortium Carries Out Major Decommissioning Project at Trawsfynydd

January 9, 2014 – 8:25 am |

The Trawsfynydd contract covers the de-planting and demolition of the site’s former cooling ponds complex – which was used to store and cool used nuclear fuel elements after they were removed from the reactors.

Collaborative Research Takes DISTINCTIVE Approach

January 9, 2014 – 8:11 am |

A multi-million pound four-year research program will combine the expertise of the nuclear industry with 10 universities to focus on some of the key challenges of the industry. The National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL), Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) and Sellafield Limited are collaborating, along with the Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and the consortium of UK universities on 30 separate projects which focus on four themes

Savannah River Site Achieves Transuranic Waste Disposition Goal in 2013

January 9, 2014 – 8:02 am |

EM and the Savannah River Site management and operations contractor complete ARRA goal to prepare 5,000 cubic meters of legacy TRU waste for shipment and disposal at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant. EM and Savannah River Nuclear Solutions also remediated nearly all 200 cubic meters of a difficult waste and repackaged it for certification and shipment.