DOE-Idaho Operations Summary

DOE-ID Bi-Weekly Summary
For the Period July 13 to Aug. 2, 2012

EDITOR'S NOTE: The following is a regular summary of operations at DOE's Idaho Site. It has been compiled in response to a request from stakeholders for more information on health, safety and environmental incidents at DOE facilities in Idaho. It also includes a brief summary of accomplishments at the laboratory. The report is broken down by contractor: Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Project (AMWTP), Idaho Cleanup Project (ICP) and Idaho National Laboratory (INL). This summary will be sent to everyone on INL's regular news release distribution list every other week. To be added to this distribution list, please call Brad Bugger at (208) 526-0833.

Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Project

July 18: While working on a window-mounted air conditioner at the Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Facility, a technician drilled a hole in the condensate collection pan and struck a cooling blade. The air conditioner was removed from service. (EM-ID—ITG-AMWTF-2012-0017).

Operational Summary

Waste Shipments: Eight of eight planned shipments of contact-handled transuranic waste and three of three shipments of remote-handled transuranic waste were made from Idaho to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in New Mexico for the week ending July 28, 2012. One of the shipments contained exhumed waste from the Accelerated Retrieval Project. Eight shipments of contact-handled transuranic waste and three shipments of remote-handled transuranic waste were scheduled for the week ending August 4, 2012.    

Idaho Cleanup Project

July 17: A potential inadequate safety analysis was declared as part of the investigation into the pressure event that occurred during start-up of the Integrated Waste Treatment Facility. It was determined that the potential for “blinding” filter systems in the facility with unburned charcoal had not been adequately analyzed in the current safety documents. The facility was shut down after the June 16 pressure event, and an investigative team was commissioned to determine the root causes of the event and how to correct them. (EM-ID—CWI-IWTU-2012-0009).

July 23: An equipment operator at the Integrated Waste Treatment Unit placed a lockout on an energy source without all placing his personal identification tag. The oversight was noticed by another worker, the operator was found and he correctly placed his identification tag. (EM-ID—CWI-IWTU-2012-0010).

August 1: Maintenance personnel entered a confined space at the Integrated Waste Treatment Unit without placing the proper locks/tags, as required by procedure. All confined space permit work was suspended at IWTU until corrective actions were taken. (EM-ID—CWI-IWTU-2012-0011).

Operational Summary

Reactor Decommissioning: The last truckload of grout was placed in the Experimental Breeder Reactor-II (EBR-II) reactor tank on July 25, 2012 as part of the decommissioning process. EBR-II is the only Resource Conservation Recovery Act (RCRA) permitted nuclear reactor in existence. Prior to grouting the tank, residual sodium in the reactor tank and coolant system was successfully treated and rendered non-hazardous. Grouting the reactor tank is a major step toward the eventual RCRA closure of the facility.   

Idaho National Laboratory

July 17: The Midway Fire that had been burning offsite since July 10 crossed onto Idaho National Laboratory land. Fire crews from the INL and the Bureau of Land Management eventually put out the fire and there was no damage to INL structures. (NE-ID—BEA-CFA-2012-0002).

July 19: During annual testing of the Safety Exhaust System at the Fuel Conditioning Facility, the automatic damper failed to open in less than 10 seconds, as required by response procedure. Testing was stopped, notifications made and a maintenance request was submitted to repair the damper. (NE-ID—BEA-FCF-2012-0005).

Operational Summary

Supporting the Mars Rover: The Mars Science Laboratory successfully landed on the planet on Aug. 5. The Idaho National Laboratory played a key role in testing and fueling the multi-mission radioisotope thermoelectric generator (space battery) that will power the Mars rover’s instruments during its Mars exploration mission.


DOE-ID Operations Summary Releases

Last updated August 07, 2012

Contact Shannon Brennan