Fuel Reprocessing

Types of facilities

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INES-event
INES 2

Over Exposure of an Operator From a Puncture Wound During Work in an Active Glovebox

Routine glovebox work was taking place to empty a glovebox sump to clear a level alarm.
The operator's first action used the normal plant methods; no equipment is removed from the sump to do this.
As the alarm did not clear, the operator proceeded to remove and clean the probe, a task that the operator had performed before. The probe as supplied has to be adjusted to the correct length followed by making the item ‘glovebox ready’.
This includes the removal of any sharp edges.

Category: Fuel Reprocessing Sellafield United Kingdom »

INES-event
INES 2

Over Exposure of an Operator From a Puncture Wound During Work in an Active Glovebox

Routine glovebox work was taking place to empty a glovebox sump to clear a level alarm.
The operator's first action used the normal plant methods; no equipment is removed from the sump to do this.
As the alarm did not clear, the operator proceeded to remove and clean the probe, a task that the operator had performed
before.

Category: Fuel Reprocessing United Kingdom »

INES-event
INES 2

Personal Contamination at Reprocessing Plant

Sampling of radioactive material was taking place on a reprocessing facility. This sampling task is performed twice daily and experienced senior staff are used to perform the operation. On this occasion a Shift Team Leader was engaged to undertake the task. Upon leaving the building and using the building exit hand and frisking monitors, the Shift Team Leader found himself to be contaminated. The Shift Team Leader reported to the Health Physics Surgery where contamination was found on one finger of his right hand and removed using the standard procedure.

Category: Fuel Reprocessing Sellafield United Kingdom »

INES-event
INES 2

Electronic Personal Dosimeter went into Alarm during X-ray Radiography Operations

Radiographers were working in a cell in a redundant reprocessing facility, carrying out digital imaging of legacy crates using X-rays in order to identify their contents.
This cell is an area of known high background radiation containing ten legacy crates.
A previous health physics survey of the crates had identified radiation levels in nine of the crates between 0.5 mSv/h and 1.8 mSv/h gamma, with the other crate up to 20mSv/h gamma.

Category: Fuel Reprocessing Sellafield United Kingdom »

INES-event
INES 3

Fractured Pipe in Thorp Reprocessing plant

On 20th April 2005 a fractured pipe was discovered in the Feed Clarification Cell of the Thorp Reprocessing Plant at Sellafield. The pipe is a feed pipe to a Head End Accountancy Tank and the fracture has led to a significant release of dissolver liquor to the Cell, leading to some corrosion of in cell steelwork. The liquor volume is around 83m3 of nitric acid containing dissolved irradiated uranium and associated plutonium and fission products.

Category: Fuel Reprocessing Sellafield United Kingdom »

INES-event
INES 1

Flooding event at the EUREX facility

EUREX is a pilot fuel reprocessing facility, which ceased operation in 1984. During the recent flooding event in Northern Italy, on 16 October 2000. water entered the ventilation system and cable room, located 3m below ground level, causing the out-of-service of the system for some days. The water in the room was slightly contaminated by the radioisotopes contained in the ventilation system filters. The room, was emptied by transferring the water to the ponds. Anyway, the contamination levels are well below the allowed limits for discharge.

Category: Fuel Reprocessing Italy »

INES-event
INES 2

Incorrectly packaged radioactive sources

When preparing documentation on 19 October 1999 for the consignment of sources from Sellafield site to Drigg Low Level Waste Disposal Site, it was discovered that a Type A transport container was proposed when a type B container was required to comply with the Transport Regulations for the quantity of material to be transported. The consignment was therefore suspended. A review of previous transfers revealed that the incorrect package has been used for similar transfers between the Sellafield and Drigg sites for a number of years.

Category: Fuel Reprocessing Sellafield United Kingdom »

INES-event
INES 2

Spillage of radioactive materials

A routine survey in the Magnox Fuel Handling Plant found a spillage of particulate contamination on the floor below Decanner 2 master-slave manipulator (MSM) port 14, the mobile maintenance platform used for MSM changes and on the ledges of viewing windows.
Intitial estimates put the quantity of activity spilled as greater than the Notification Level for spillages in the Ionising Radiation Regulations. There has been no personnel contamination, no reports of contaminated clothing and there are no environmental implications.

Category: Fuel Reprocessing Sellafield United Kingdom »

INES-event
INES 2

Loss of ventilation in Dounreay fuel cycle area

A digging machine damaged in 11 kV electrical supply cable which supplies a complex of reprocessing and waste management plants at the UKAEA Dounreay site at Thurso, Scotland, because alternative electrical supply arrangements did not become available as intended. The ventilation fans lost power. Plants were evacuated. Power was restored to the fans 15 hours later. On re-entry the plants were found to be clean. The environment around and inside the complex was monitored and no release of radioactivity was detected.

Category: Fuel Reprocessing Dounreay United Kingdom »

INES-event
INES 3

Fire and Explosion at the Bituminization Demonstration Facility of the Reprocessing Plant

At 10:06, March 11, 1997, a fire occurred in the cell of the Bituminization Demonstration Facility, and ventilation system stopped. Ten hours after the fire, an explosion occurred in the facility, and containment of the cell and building was degraded. Following the fire and the explosion, workers were evacuated from the facility and adjacent facilities. It is assumed that the largest radiation dose level to the workers was 0.4 to 1.6 mSv and the maximum quantity of the Cs-137 released from the facility was 1 to 4 GBq.

Category: Fuel Reprocessing Japan »