60 years of headlines from the Advanced Test Reactor

March 24, 2022, 3:01PMANS Nuclear Cafe
Cover of the April 1962 issue of Nuclear News (left), ATR core diagram appearing in October 1969 issue of Nuclear News (center), and cover of the October 1969 issue of Nuclear News (right).

The Department of Energy and Idaho National Laboratory announced this week that the sixth major core overhaul of the Advanced Test Reactor (ATR) is complete, after an 11-month outage that began in April 2021. The ATR was built as a key piece of mission support for U.S. Navy programs and first reached full power in 1969. Today it remains “the world’s largest, most powerful and flexible materials test reactor,” in the words of INL—quite a feat for a reactor that was planned over 60 years ago.

Letter of intent sets COLA submittal date for NuScale plant

February 8, 2022, 3:02PMANS Nuclear Cafe

Small modular reactor developer NuScale Power has informed the Nuclear Regulatory Commission via letter that a combined license application (COLA) for the Carbon Free Power Project’s SMR plant is expected to be submitted to the agency in January 2024. The COLA will be for a six-unit 77-MWe plant.

The public power consortium Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems launched the Carbon Free Power Project in 2015 to develop, own, and operate the nation’s first SMR plant, to be located at Idaho National Laboratory, with reactor technology supplied by NuScale.

NuScale to go public using SPAC process

December 15, 2021, 12:07PMNuclear News

First reported last week by S&P Global Platts but confirmed only yesterday, small modular reactor developer NuScale Power plans to go public via a merger with Spring Valley Acquisition Corporation, a special purpose acquisition company, or SPAC. (SPACs are shell corporations listed on a stock exchange with the purpose of acquiring or merging with a private company, effectively taking that company public without going through the standard initial public offering process.)

DOE contractor wins awards for Savannah River Site videos

November 5, 2021, 7:01AMANS Nuclear Cafe
SRNS's Communications and Media Services Department was honored with two 2021 Telly Awards. Members of the department include, from left, Robin Adney, Ian Rojas-Godoy, Brad Bohr, Nathan Lester, Steve Ashe, and Laura Russo. (Photo: DOE)

Along with established entertainment mediums such as Jennifer Garner’s “Pretend Cooking Show” and the Nickelodeon TV channel, Department of Energy contractor Savannah River Nuclear Solutions (SRNS) has been named a winner in two categories of this year’s Telly Awards.

SRNS’s Communications and Media Services Department won a Gold Telly for the video “Savannah River Site Overview” in the non-broadcast, corporate image category, and a Bronze Telly for “SRNS Now: September 2020” in the non-broadcast, employee communications category.

Fluor-BWXT Portsmouth awarded $690 million contract extension

April 8, 2021, 6:59AMRadwaste Solutions
Workers remove asbestos siding panels from a Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant building. Photo: Business Wire

Fluor-BWXT Portsmouth, a joint venture of Fluor and BWX Technologies, along with engineering company Jacob, have received a contract extension valued at up to $690 million, including options, from the Department of Energy. The contract, announced April 6, is for environmental management work at the former Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant near Piketon, Ohio.

The year in review 2020: Waste Management

January 8, 2021, 2:50PMRadwaste Solutions

Here is a look back at the top stories of 2020 from our Waste Management section in Newswire and Nuclear News magazine. Remember to check back to Newswire soon for more top stories from 2020.

Waste Management section

  • First-ever cleanup of uranium enrichment plant celebrated at Oak Ridge: The completion of the decades-long effort to clean up the former Oak Ridge Gaseous Diffusion Plant was celebrated on October 13, with Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette joining U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander, U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann, Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee, and other state and community leaders at the East Tennessee Technology Park, where the uranium enrichment complex once stood. Read more.

DOE awards $13-billion tank closure contract

May 26, 2020, 9:10AMRadwaste Solutions

The Department of Energy has awarded a $13-billion tank closure contract for services at its Hanford Site, near Richland, Wash. The 10-year contract was awarded on May 14 to Hanford Works Restoration, a joint venture of BWXT Technologies and Fluor Corporation that also includes DBD and INTERA, two preselected small businesses that provide specialized modeling and regulatory expertise, respectively.

Hanford Works Restoration will take over from Hanford’s current tank waste contractor, Washington River Protection Solutions (WRPS), whose contract expires at the end of September. The WRPS contract includes a clause that allows the DOE to end the contract earlier to align with a 60-day transition to the new contract.