Tank Waste Processing and Tank Closure

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Savannah River Site Tank Farm

The Office of Environmental Management (EM) tank waste program consists of safely storing of 90 million gallons of radioactive liquid waste at the Savannah River Site (SRS), Idaho National laboratory (INL) and the Office of River Protection (ORP) at Hanford, Washington. Of the approximately 90 million gallons, 36 million gallons (250 x 106 Ci ) is stored at SRS, approximately 56 million gallons (109 x 106 Ci) is located at ORP while 900,000 gallons of liquid sodium bearing waste (300,000 Ci) is at INL. In addition, EM operates major nuclear facilities to process and dispose of the waste as well as emptying, cleaning and closing the waste tanks. The SRS and ORP waste streams will be separated a highly radioactive fraction and a low activity faction. The high activity portion will be vitrified while the low activity portion will be either vitrified or grouted. 

As liquid waste is processed, the tanks are operationally closed through a process that involves: bulk waste removal, heel removal, cooling coil flushing/annulus cleaning, isolation & residual sampling and grouting. To date, eight SRS waste tanks have been operationally closed and grouted.

The EM tank waste program’s goal is to continue cleanup progress in a cost-effective manner that is risk informed, engages stakeholders, applies innovative solutions and provides value to the American taxpayer.

Defense Waste Processing Facility

Current EM nuclear processing facilities include:

Savannah River Site

Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant
Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant

Office of River Protection

  • Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant (WTP) (under contraction) – designed to vitrify both the high and low activity portions of the liquid tank waste with the current plan to initiate operations with low activity waste vitrification, Direct Feed Low Activity Waste (DFLAW)

 

 

 

Integrated Waste Treatment Unit
Integrated Waste Treatment Unit

 

Idaho National Laboratory (INL)

  • Integrated Waste Treatment Unity (IWTU) – designed to treat sodium bearing high level radioactive waste using Fluidized Bed Steam Reforming (FBSR) that decomposes waste using super-heated steam to produce a sodium-alumino-silicate (NAS) mineralized waste form that can be packaged for disposal 

Tank Waste & Waste Processing News

Portable Monitors Provide Extra Protection for Hanford Tank Farm Workers
December 4, 2018
Workers in Hanford’s tank farms have begun using new personal monitors to provide further protection from potential exposure to chemical vapors.
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Robotic Crawlers Inspect Bottom of Hanford Double-Shell Tank
November 20, 2018
ORP and contractor WRPS are starting to get to the bottom of things when it comes to learning more about Hanford’s double-shell liquid waste tanks.
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Post-Retrieval Activities Changing Hanford Tank Farm Footprint
November 13, 2018
A comparison of aerial photos of Hanford’s C Tank Farm highlights the significant progress to dismantle site infrastructure.
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Summit Provides Forum to Discuss Safety of SRS Liquid Waste Cleanup
November 13, 2018
The safety challenges and successes of EM’s liquid waste cleanup mission at the Savannah River Site (SRS) were among the key themes of a recent event.
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Hanford’s WTP Receives Specialized Crane for High-Level Waste Facility
November 13, 2018
Components for a specialized 60-ton-capacity crane were delivered to Hanford’s Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant (WTP) earlier this month.
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SRS Facility Celebrates 35th Anniversary Since Groundbreaking
November 13, 2018
In November 1983, crews broke ground for the Defense Waste Processing Facility (DWPF), the largest vitrification facility in the U.S.
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SRS Makes Progress on 32-Million-Gallon Waste Disposal Unit
November 6, 2018
Construction of a second large-scale saltstone disposal unit (SDU) at the Savannah River Site (SRS) is progressing safely and on schedule.
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Workers Complete Renovations at Hanford Lab
November 6, 2018
EM’s ORP and tank farms contractor Washington River Protection Solutions (WRPS) recently renovated portions of the Hanford Site’s 222-S Laboratory.
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Mock-up Project Reduces Risk in Salt Waste Processing Facility Integration Work
October 30, 2018
EM and its liquid waste contractor at SRS are putting practice into action before tackling significant projects.
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Hanford Vit Plant Support Facility Takes Shape
October 30, 2018
EM’s ORP and contractor BNI recently installed two 40-ton process cell pipe racks into the Effluent Management Facility (EMF).
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