Replacement of HEPA Filters at the LANL CMR Facility : risk reduced by comprehensive waste characterization

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Description

In March 2001, the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) completed the replacement of 720 radioactively contaminated HEPA filters for $5.7M. This project was completed five months ahead of schedule and $6.0M under budget with no worker injuries or contaminations. Numerous health and safety, environmental, and waste disposal problems were overcome, including having to perform work in a radioactively contaminated work environment, that was also contaminated with perchlorates (potential explosive). High waste disposal costs were also an issue. A project risk analysis and government cost estimate determined that the cost of performing the work would be $11.8M. To reduce risk, a ... continued below

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14 p.

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Corpion, J. C. (Juan C.) January 1, 2002.

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Description

In March 2001, the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) completed the replacement of 720 radioactively contaminated HEPA filters for $5.7M. This project was completed five months ahead of schedule and $6.0M under budget with no worker injuries or contaminations. Numerous health and safety, environmental, and waste disposal problems were overcome, including having to perform work in a radioactively contaminated work environment, that was also contaminated with perchlorates (potential explosive). High waste disposal costs were also an issue. A project risk analysis and government cost estimate determined that the cost of performing the work would be $11.8M. To reduce risk, a $1.2M comprehensive condition assessment was performed to determine the degree of toxic and radioactive contamination trapped on the HEPA filters; and to determine whether explosive concentrations of perchlorates were present. Workers from LANL and personnel from Waldheim International of Knoxville, TN collected hundreds of samples wearing personnel protective gear against radioactive, toxic, and explosive hazards. LANL also funded research at the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology to determine the explosivity of perchlorates. The data acquired from the condition assessment showed that toxic metals, toxic organic compounds, and explosive concentrations of perchlorates were absent. The data also showed that the extent of actinide metal contamination was less than expected, reducing the potential of transuranic waste generation by 50%. Consequently, $4.2M in cost savings and $1.8M in risk reduction were realized by increased worker productivity and waste segregation.

Physical Description

14 p.

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  • "Submitted to: Waste Management 2002, Tucson, AZ"

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  • Report No.: LA-UR-02-0339
  • Report No.: LA-UR-02-339
  • Report No.: LAUR 02-0339
  • Grant Number: none
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 975964
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc934757

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Creation Date

  • January 1, 2002

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Nov. 13, 2016, 7:26 p.m.

Description Last Updated

  • Dec. 12, 2016, 6:06 p.m.

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Corpion, J. C. (Juan C.). Replacement of HEPA Filters at the LANL CMR Facility : risk reduced by comprehensive waste characterization, article, January 1, 2002; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc934757/: accessed August 17, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.