December 22, 2003

Cold Standby Program at the Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant

The Department has not clearly defined the termination point of the Cold Standby Program. Initially, the Department's Office of Nuclear Energy, Science and Technology (Nuclear Energy) coordinated the end of Cold Standby with the deployment of a government-funded gas centrifuge facility. The plans called for the Cold Standby mission to end in September 2005 with centrifuge production reaching adequate levels by September 2008. Under those assumptions, there would be a minimum one-year gap in backup domestic enrichment capability, representing the time between the latest possible resumption of gaseous diffusion operations and the planned full operation of the governmentfunded gas centrifuge facility.