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Missouri - Hematite Site History

11/06/12

Missouri - Hematite Site History

Permalink 05:16:00 pm by Steve Schulin, Categories: Uncategorized, Uncategorized, Uncategorized
The Westinghouse Hematite site, located near Festus, MO, is a former nuclear fuel cycle facility that is currently undergoing decommissioning. The Hematite site consists of approximately 228 acres, although operations at the site were confined to the “central tract” area which spans approximately 19 acres. The remaining 209 acres, which is not believed to be radiologically contaminated, is predominantly pasture or woodland...

Throughout its history, operations at the Hematite facility have included the manufacturing of uranium metal and compounds from natural and 235U for use as nuclear fuel. Specifically, operations have included the conversion of uranium hexafluoride (UF6) gas of various 235U enrichments to uranium oxide, uranium carbide, uranium dioxide pellets, and uranium metal. These products were manufactured for use by the federal government and government contractors and by commercial and research reactors approved by the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC). Research and Development was also conducted at the facility, as were uranium scrap recovery processes.

The Hematite facility was used for the manufacture of low-enriched ( up to 5.0 wt. pct 235U), intermediate-enriched (5-20 wt. pct 235U) and high-enriched (more than 20 wt. pct 235U) materials during the period 1956 through 1974. In 1974 production of intermediate and highenriched material was discontinued and all associated materials and equipment were removed from the facility. From 1974 to cessation of manufacturing operations in 2001, the Hematite facility produced nuclear fuel assemblies for commercial nuclear power plants. In 2001, fuel manufacturing operations were terminated and the facility license was amended to reflect a decommissioning scope. Accountable uranium inventory was removed and Decontamination and Decommissioning (D&D) of equipment and surfaces within the process buildings was undertaken. This effort resulted in the removal of the majority of process piping (above ground piping) and equipment from the buildings. At the conclusion of that project phase, the accessible surfaces of the remaining equipment and surfaces of the buildings were sprayed with fixative in preparation for building demolition.

Source: Nuclear Safety Associates, "Nuclear Criticality Safety Assessment of Sub-Surface Structure Decommissioning at the Hematite Site", NSA-TR-09-08, Rev. 1, November 2011

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