Vacuum drilling of unsaturated tuffs at a potential radioactive-waste repository, Yucca Mountain, Nevada

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A vacuum reverse-air circulation drilling method was used to drill two 17-1/2-inch (44.5-centimeter) diameter test holes to depths of 1269 feet (387 meters) and 1887 feet (575 meters) at Yucca Mountain near the Nevada Test Site. The site is being considered by the US Department of Energy for construction of a high-level radioactive-waste repository. One of these two test holes (USW UZ-1) has been equipped with instrumentation to obtain a long-term record of pressure and moisture potential data; the other test hole (USW UZ-6) will be similarly instrumented in the near future. These investigations are being conducted as part of ... continued below

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11 p.

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Whitfield, M.S. December 31, 1985.

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Description

A vacuum reverse-air circulation drilling method was used to drill two 17-1/2-inch (44.5-centimeter) diameter test holes to depths of 1269 feet (387 meters) and 1887 feet (575 meters) at Yucca Mountain near the Nevada Test Site. The site is being considered by the US Department of Energy for construction of a high-level radioactive-waste repository. One of these two test holes (USW UZ-1) has been equipped with instrumentation to obtain a long-term record of pressure and moisture potential data; the other test hole (USW UZ-6) will be similarly instrumented in the near future. These investigations are being conducted as part of the Nevada Nuclear Waste Storage Investigations Project of the US Department of Energy. The test holes were drilled using a 5-1/2-inch (14-centimeter) by 8-5/8-inch (22-centimeter) dual-string reverse-vacuum assembly. A vacuum, induced at the land surface, removed the drill cuttings through the inner string. Compressed air was injected into the dual-string annulus to cool the bit and to keep the bit and inner string clean. A tracer gas, sulfur hexafluoride (SF{sub 6}), was added to the compressed air for a later determination of atmospheric contamination that might have occurred during the drilling. After reaching the surface, the drill cuttings were routed to a dry separator for sample collection. Then return air and dust from the cuttings were routed to a wet separator where the dust was removed by a water spray, and the remaining air was exhausted through the vacuum unit (blower) to the atmosphere. 6 refs., 4 figs.

Physical Description

11 p.

Notes

NTIS, PC A02/MF A01; OSTI as DE86008852

Source

  • Conference on characterization and monitoring of the vadose zone, Denver, CO (United States), 19-21 Nov 1985

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  • Other: DE86008852
  • Report No.: CONF-8511172--4
  • Grant Number: AI08-78ET44802
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 59846
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc690768

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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Creation Date

  • December 31, 1985

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Aug. 14, 2015, 8:43 a.m.

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  • April 18, 2016, 7:12 p.m.

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Whitfield, M.S. Vacuum drilling of unsaturated tuffs at a potential radioactive-waste repository, Yucca Mountain, Nevada, article, December 31, 1985; Denver, Colorado. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc690768/: accessed December 14, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.