Decommissioning of Experimental Breeder Reactor - II Complex, Post Sodium Draining

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The Experimental Breeder Reactor - II (EBR-II) was shutdown in September 1994 as mandated by the United States Department of Energy. This sodium-cooled reactor had been in service since 1964. The bulk sodium was drained from the primary and secondary systems and processed. Residual sodium remaining in the systems after draining was converted into sodium bicarbonate using humid carbon dioxide. This technique was tested at Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois under controlled conditions, then demonstrated on a larger scale by treating residual sodium within the EBR-II secondary cooling system, followed by the primary tank. This process, terminated in 2002, was ... continued below

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Michelbacher, J. A. (Bart); Henslee, S. Paul; Knight, Collin J. & Sherman, Steven R. September 1, 2005.

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The Experimental Breeder Reactor - II (EBR-II) was shutdown in September 1994 as mandated by the United States Department of Energy. This sodium-cooled reactor had been in service since 1964. The bulk sodium was drained from the primary and secondary systems and processed. Residual sodium remaining in the systems after draining was converted into sodium bicarbonate using humid carbon dioxide. This technique was tested at Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois under controlled conditions, then demonstrated on a larger scale by treating residual sodium within the EBR-II secondary cooling system, followed by the primary tank. This process, terminated in 2002, was used to place a layer of sodium bicarbonate over all exposed surfaces of sodium. Treatment of the remaining EBR-II sodium is governed by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). The Idaho Department of Environmental Quality issued a RCRA Operating Permit in 2002, mandating that all hazardous materials be removed from EBR-II within a 10 year period, with the ability to extend the permit and treatment period for another 10 years. A preliminary plan has been formulated to remove the remaining sodium and NaK from the primary and secondary systems using moist carbon dioxide, steam and nitrogen, and a water flush. The moist carbon dioxide treatment was resumed in May 2004. As of August 2005, approximately 60% of the residual sodium within the EBR-II primary tank had been treated. This process will continue through the end of 2005, when it is forecast that the process will become increasingly ineffective. At that time, subsequent treatment processes will be planned and initiated. It should be noted that the processes and anticipated costs associated with these processes are preliminary. Detailed engineering has not been performed, and approval for these methods has not been obtained from the regulator or the sponsors.

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  • IAEA Technical Meeting on "The Decommissioning of Fast Reactors after Sodium Draining",Centre d'Etudes de Cadarache, France,09/26/2005,09/30/2005

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  • Report No.: INL/CON-05-00647
  • Grant Number: DE-AC07-99ID-13727
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 911584
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc877239

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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.

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  • September 1, 2005

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Sept. 22, 2016, 2:13 a.m.

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  • April 1, 2017, 1:48 a.m.

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Michelbacher, J. A. (Bart); Henslee, S. Paul; Knight, Collin J. & Sherman, Steven R. Decommissioning of Experimental Breeder Reactor - II Complex, Post Sodium Draining, article, September 1, 2005; [Idaho Falls, Idaho]. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc877239/: accessed April 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.