Workers enter cocooned F Reactor for scheduled inspection in late October 2014.
Workers from Mission Support Alliance, LLC., removed the welds around the steel door of the F Reactor in late October 2014 before stepping inside the reactor to complete its periodic inspection. This is the first time the Department of Energy (DOE) has had the reactor open since 2008.
The F Reactor is one of nine reactors along the Columbia River at the Department’s Hanford Site in southeastern Washington State, where environmental cleanup has been ongoing since 1989.
As part of the Tri-Party Agreement, the Department completes surveillance and maintenance activities of cocooned reactors periodically to evaluate the structural integrity of the safe storage enclosure and to ensure confinement of any remaining hazardous materials.
“This entry marks a transition of sorts because the Hanford Long-Term Stewardship Program, for the first time, was responsible for conducting the entry and surveillance and maintenance activities,” said Keith Grindstaff, Energy Department Long-Term Stewardship Program Manager. “As the River Corridor cleanup work is completed and transitioned to long-term stewardship, our program will manage any on-going requirements.”