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

Tank Farm Pump Pull Moves ORP Closer to DFLAW Operations
February 12, 2019
EM’s Office of River Protection (ORP) and its tank farm contractor have safely completed a pump removal of outdated, contaminated equipment.
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Moab UMTRA Project Doubles Weekly Train Shipments
February 12, 2019
EM’s Moab Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project recently began doubling its weekly mill tailings train shipments from two to four.
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Virtual Capabilities Help Engineers Design Hanford Tank Farm Barrier
February 5, 2019
EM’s Office of River Protection and its tank farms contractor are set to use virtual capabilities to inspect an upcoming project.
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Hanford Leadership Energized for DFLAW Operations, Other Transitions
February 5, 2019
EM ORP Manager Brian Vance speaks to more than 80 senior leaders from more than 14 Hanford Site organizations during a recent operations leadership wo
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Hanford WTP Turns Over Analytical Laboratory to Startup Phase
January 29, 2019
Hanford’s WTP team achieved a significant accomplishment recently as construction crews completed turnover of the Analytical Laboratory systems.
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Employee-Led Facility Efficiencies Improve Workflow at Hanford Tank Farms
January 29, 2019
EM’s ORP and contractor WRPS collaborated to increase efficiency & further enhance safety by improving where workers don and doff protective gear.
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Operations Begin for Tank Closure Demonstration Project at Savannah River Site
January 22, 2019
EM has begun operating a significant tank closure project at SRS, representing a major step forward in the liquid waste cleanup mission at SRS.
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SRS Facility Produces 30 Million Gallons of Decontaminated Mixture
January 22, 2019
SRS facility has produced more than 30 million gallons of decontaminated salt solution mixed with a cement-like grout since beginning operations.
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Crews Safely Deliver Large Vessels to Hanford Waste Treatment Plant
January 22, 2019
Four large corrosion-resistant process vessels recently arrived at Hanford's WTP, marking a significant step in the effluent management construction.
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ORP Launches Safer, More Efficient Entry System in Radiological Areas
January 15, 2019
ORP & Hanford tank farms contractor WRPS continuously strive to implement innovative technologies that improve worker safety and efficiency.
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