An aerial view of the Direct-Feed Low-Activity Waste Facility on the Hanford Site. A new $30 million investment by EM will fund research and technology development to advance the tank waste mission at the Hanford Site.
A new $30 million investment by EM will fund research and technology development led by DOE’s national laboratories aimed at better addressing tank waste at the Hanford Site.
“With tank waste at sites like Hanford driving EM’s environmental risk and liabilities, we have a responsibility to evaluate options that could shave decades off the current schedule, reduce project risks and save billions — without sacrificing safety or effectiveness,” EM Senior Advisor William “Ike” White said.
The investment in the Hanford tank waste mission is based on priorities outlined in the Hanford Tank Waste R&D Roadmap developed by the Network of National Laboratories for Environmental Management and Stewardship. EM incorporated input from the EM Advisory Board in the implementation of the roadmap.
The $30 million will be used for research activities to evaluate options and add new tools that could be used to advance the tank waste mission.
“As we keep moving towards immobilizing some Hanford tank waste in glass via the Direct-Feed Low-Activity Waste system, we are also looking at how to develop breakthrough technologies that will improve efficiency, reduce lifecycle cost and accelerate the schedule for the Hanford tank waste mission,” said Ming Zhu, EM senior advisor for laboratory policy.
The targeted investment is consistent with recommendations made by the U.S. Government Accountability Office, National Academy of Sciences, DOE national laboratories and others. It represents one of several steps EM is taking to identify and analyze technologies and other opportunities to get waste safely out of tanks, treated and disposed of sooner, driving down risks to workers, the public, and the environment.
EM has solicited proposals from the national laboratories on ideas that could help advance the Hanford tank waste mission in the near term and solutions that could impact the long-term cost and schedule.
Focus areas of proposals are to include:
- waste retrieval, transport and tank closure;
- immobilization and disposal;
- secondary waste treatment; and
- crosscutting research with the potential to substantially reduce the total cost and duration of the mission.
The national laboratories are encouraged to partner with universities and colleges, including minority serving institutions, and industry in their proposals.
EM anticipates awarding funding to selected national laboratory teams by the end of September.
Source - EM Newsletter