$6.4 billion Idaho cleanup contract awarded to Jacobs-led company

June 1, 2021, 3:00PMRadwaste Solutions
The Snake River Plain Aquifer

The Department of Energy’s Office of Environmental Management will award the Idaho Cleanup Project contract for the Idaho National Laboratory site to Idaho Environmental Coalition (IEC), of Tullahoma, Tenn. The contract has an estimated ceiling of approximately $6.4 billion over 10 years, with cost reimbursement and fixed-price task orders to define the contract performance.

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.

Jacobs to assist in one of world’s deepest nuclear cleanup missions

March 5, 2021, 9:29AMRadwaste Solutions

Dounreay Site Restoration Ltd. (DSRL) has awarded a six-year contract worth an estimated $10.4 million to engineering company Jacobs to lead an integrated design management team for one of the world’s deepest nuclear cleanups. The team will help in coordinating the program to clear and treat radioactive waste in the shaft and silo at Dounreay, near Thurso, in Scotland, U.K., a former fast reactor research and development center.

The Dounreay shaft extends 214.5 feet below ground and measures 15 feet wide in places, while the silo is a large underground vault with a concrete roof. Both were used for disposal of intermediate-level radioactive waste in the 1960s and 1970s, but now the solid waste and liquid effluent they contain needs to be retrieved and repackaged for removal to a safe, modern storage facility.

DSRL, the site decommissioning company, has tasked Jacobs with leading design integration ahead of the start of construction work. The company will also assist with the management of design and build work packages and offer design support during construction and commissioning. In announcing the contract on March 4, Jacobs said that it will subcontract with Berkshire Engineering, which is based near Dounreay, to assist with test and trials work.

Tapping Nonnuclear Knowledge

October 2, 2020, 3:39PMRadwaste SolutionsDiletta Colette Invernizzi, Nick Higginson, Richard Howells, Willem Van Es, and Ian Beadle

The Deepsea Delta oil-drilling platform in the North Sea. The dismantling of such large oil and gas structures may offer lessons that can be applied to nuclear decommissioning.

Within the energy sector, the management of projects and megaprojects has historically focused on the planning and delivery of the construction of infrastructure [1–3]. Therefore, policies are more oriented to support the construction of infrastructure rather than its decommissioning. Globally, however, a number of facilities have reached or will soon reach their end of life and need to be decommissioned.

These facilities span the energy sector, including nuclear power plants, oil and gas rigs, mines, dams, etc., whose decommissioning present unprecedented technical and socioeconomic challenges [4–7]. Moreover, the cost of decommissioning and waste management of this array of infrastructure is estimated to reach hundreds of billions of dollars and, for most of these projects, keeps increasing, with limited cross-sectorial knowledge-transfer to mitigate the spiraling increase of these figures.

Cross-sectorial knowledge-transfer is one way to tackle this matter and improve the planning and delivery of decommissioning projects. The aim of our research has been to build a roadmap that is designed to promote the sharing of good practices between projects both within the same industry and across different industrial sectors, focusing specifically on major decommissioning and waste-management challenges.

To reach this aim, our research leverages on the experience of senior industry practitioners and their involvement in the decommissioning and waste management of infrastructure in different sectors. More specifically, this research addresses the following questions:

To what extent can lessons learned be transferred across industrial sectors?

What are the challenges that hinder successful cross-sectorial knowledge-transfer?

Jacobs to study C-14 in U.K. AGR graphite

May 13, 2020, 10:08AMRadwaste Solutions

The global engineering company Jacobs, under a contract with Radioactive Waste Management Ltd. (RWM), will be studying the release of radioactivity from irradiated graphite taken from reactor core samples at the United Kingdom’s nuclear power plants. According to Jacobs, the research will support RWM, a subsidiary of the U.K. government’s Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, in its analysis of graphite behavior and the options for graphite waste management in the future.