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The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant’s most recent maintenance outage included work on ventilation fan motors and systems, shown here.
The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant’s most recent maintenance outage included work on ventilation fan motors and systems, shown here.

CARLSBAD, N.M.EM Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) workers completed an immense amount of work during a two-day planned power outage that occurred while the site operated in an essential mission-critical posture due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The WIPP engineering, maintenance, and operations departments completed a lengthy to-do list during the outage that uncoupled power from the WIPP core, including the waste handling. It was the culmination of a two-week push to complete projects during the mission-critical period.

“Each individual involved with this work scope showed several core values like ownership, respect, continuous improvement, and teamwork,” WIPP operations manager Don McBride said. “While we did have some hurdles to clear, each individual pushed through these challenges and we accomplished this work as a team.”

Substations in the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant underground power everything from computers to giant mining machines.
Substations in the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant underground power everything from computers to giant mining machines.
Bulkheads such as this one being installed in the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) underground help control airflow in different loops, or circuits. During the recent maintenance outage, remote controls connected to WIPP’s Central Monitoring Room were a
Bulkheads such as this one being installed in the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) underground help control airflow in different loops, or circuits
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