The BORAX Experiments were a series of safety experiments on boiling water nuclear reactors conducted by Argonne National Laboratory in the 1950s and 1960s at the National Reactor Testing Station in eastern Idaho. They were performed using the five BORAX reactors that were built by Argonne. BORAX-III was the first nuclear reactor to supply electrical power to the grid in the United States in 1955; this series of tests began in 1952 with the construction of the BORAX-I nuclear reactor. BORAX-I experiment proved that a reactor using direct boiling of water would be practical, rather than unstable, because of the bubble formation in the core. Subsequently the reactor was used for power excursion tests which showed that rapid conversion of water to steam would safely control the reaction; the final, deliberately destructive test in 1954 produced an unexpectedly large power excursion that "instead of the melting of a few fuel plates, the test melted a major fraction of the entire core." However, this core meltdown and release of nuclear fuel and nuclear fission products provided additional useful data to improve mathematical models.
The tests proved key safety principles of the design of modern nuclear power reactors. Design power of BORAX-I was 1.4 megawatts thermal. The BORAX-I design was a precursor to the SL-1 plant, sited nearby and began operations in 1958; the principles discovered in the BORAX-I experiments helped scientists understand the issues that contributed to the fatal incident at SL-1 in 1961. The BORAX-II reactor was built in 1954, with a design output of 6 MW. In March 1955 BORAX-II was intentionally destroyed by taking the reactor "prompt critical"; the design of BORAX-II was modified into BORAX-III with the addition of a turbine, proving that turbine contamination would not be a problem. It was linked to the local power grid for about an hour on July 17, 1955. BORAX-III provided 2,000 kW to power nearby Arco, the BORAX test facility, powered the National Reactor Testing Station. Thus, Arco became the first community powered by nuclear energy; the reactor continued to be used for tests until 1956. BORAX-IV, built in 1956, explored the thorium fuel cycle and uranium-233 fuel with a power of 20 MW thermal.
This experiment utilized fuel plates that were purposely full of defects in order to explore long-term plant operation with damaged fuel plates. Radioactive gases were released into the atmosphere. BORAX-V continued the work including the use of a superheater, it operated from 1962 to 1964. Test synopsis: The carried out by withdrawing four of the five control rods far enough to make the reactor critical at a low power level; the fifth rod was fired from the core by means of a spring. In this test, the rod was ejected in 0.2 seconds. After the control rod was ejected, an explosion took place in the reactor which carried away the control mechanism and blew out the core. At half a mile, the radiation level rose to 25 mr/hr. Personnel were evacuated for about 30 minutes; the destruction of BORAX-I caused the "aerial distribution of contaminants resulting from the final experiment of the BORAX-I reactor" and the contamination of the topmost 1 foot of soil over about 2 acres in the vicinity. The site needed to be cleaned up prior to being used for subsequent experiments.
The 84,000-square foot area was covered with 6 inches of gravel in 1954, but grass and other plants reseeded the area since then. The BORAX-I burial ground is located about 2,730 feet northwest of the Experimental Breeder Reactor-1, a publicly accessible national monument. Since 1987, the United States Environmental Protection Agency has classified the burial ground as Superfund site Operable Unit 6-01, one of two such sites at the Idaho National Laboratory. In 1995, the EPA ordered the primary remedy of the burial ground should be: "Containment by capping with an engineered barrier constructed of native materials." The site is expected to produce no more than a 2 in 10,000 increase in cancer risk for long term residential use after 320 years, with no significant decrease after that time. This risk calculation ignores the shielding provided by the soil cover, which at the time of the EPA decision had reduced exposure to little more than background level, makes pessimistic modeling assumptions that increase the projected risk, to deliberately focus on the high rather than low effect side.
SL-1, the only demonstration of the BORAX-I principles during a real nuclear accident Experimental Breeder Reactor I first production of electric power Notes BibliographyHaroldsen, Ray. "The Story of the BORAX Nuclear Reactor and the EBR-I Meltdown". Argonne National Laboratory. Media related to BORAX experiments at Wikimedia Commons BORAX-I reactor description at Argonne National Laboratory site. BORAX-II reactor description at Argonne National Laboratory web site. BORAX-III reactor description at Argonne National Laboratory web site. BORAX-IV reactor description at Argonne National Laboratory web site. BORAX-V reactor description at Argonne National Laboratory web site. Summaries of BORAX experiments in Appendix B of Idaho National Laboratory's history Proving the Principle. Borax – Safety experiment on a boiling water reactor on YouTube
A breeder reactor is a nuclear reactor that generates more fissile material than it consumes. Breeder reactors achieve this because their neutron economy is high enough to create more fissile fuel than they use, by irradiation of a fertile material, such as uranium-238 or thorium-232, loaded into the reactor along with fissile fuel. Breeders were at first found attractive because they made more complete use of uranium fuel than light water reactors, but interest declined after the 1960s as more uranium reserves were found, new methods of uranium enrichment reduced fuel costs. Breeder reactors could, in principle, extract all of the energy contained in uranium or thorium, decreasing fuel requirements by a factor of 100 compared to used once-through light water reactors, which extract less than 1% of the energy in the uranium mined from the earth; the high fuel-efficiency of breeder reactors could reduce concerns about fuel supply or energy used in mining. Adherents claim that with seawater uranium extraction, there would be enough fuel for breeder reactors to satisfy our energy needs for 5 billion years at 1983's total energy consumption rate, thus making nuclear energy a renewable energy.
Nuclear waste became a greater concern by the 1990s. In broad terms, spent nuclear fuel has two main components; the first consists of fission products, the leftover fragments of fuel atoms after they have been split to release energy. Fission products come in dozens of elements and hundreds of isotopes, all of them lighter than uranium; the second main component of spent fuel is transuranics, which are generated from uranium or heavier atoms in the fuel when they absorb neutrons but do not undergo fission. All transuranic isotopes fall within the actinide series on the periodic table, so they are referred to as the actinides; the physical behavior of the fission products is markedly different from that of the transuranics. In particular, fission products do not themselves undergo fission, therefore cannot be used for nuclear weapons. Furthermore, only seven long-lived fission product isotopes have half-lives longer than a hundred years, which makes their geological storage or disposal less problematic than for transuranic materials.
With increased concerns about nuclear waste, breeding fuel cycles became interesting again because they can reduce actinide wastes plutonium and minor actinides. Breeder reactors are designed to fission the actinide wastes as fuel, thus convert them to more fission products. After "spent nuclear fuel" is removed from a light water reactor, it undergoes a complex decay profile as each nuclide decays at a different rate. Due to a physical oddity referenced below, there is a large gap in the decay half-lives of fission products compared to transuranic isotopes. If the transuranics are left in the spent fuel, after 1,000 to 100,000 years, the slow decay of these transuranics would generate most of the radioactivity in that spent fuel. Thus, removing the transuranics from the waste eliminates much of the long-term radioactivity of spent nuclear fuel. Today's commercial light water reactors do breed some new fissile material in the form of plutonium; because commercial reactors were never designed as breeders, they do not convert enough uranium-238 into plutonium to replace the uranium-235 consumed.
Nonetheless, at least one-third of the power produced by commercial nuclear reactors comes from fission of plutonium generated within the fuel. With this level of plutonium consumption, light water reactors consume only part of the plutonium and minor actinides they produce, nonfissile isotopes of plutonium build up, along with significant quantities of other minor actinides. One measure of a reactor's performance is the "conversion ratio," defined as the ratio of new fissile atoms produced to fissile atoms consumed. All proposed nuclear reactors except specially designed and operated actinide burners experience some degree of conversion; as long as there is any amount of a fertile material within the neutron flux of the reactor, some new fissile material is always created. When the conversion ratio is greater than 1, it is called the "breeding ratio." For example used light water reactors have a conversion ratio of 0.6. Pressurized heavy water reactors running on natural uranium have a conversion ratio of 0.8.
In a breeder reactor, the conversion ratio is higher than 1. "Break-even" is achieved when the conversion ratio reaches 1.0 and the reactor produces as much fissile material as it uses. The Doubling time is the amount of time it would take for a breeder reactor to produce enough new fissile material to replace the original fuel and additionally produce an equivalent amount of fuel for another nuclear reactor; this was considered an important measure of breeder performance in early years, when uranium was thought to be scarce. However, since uranium is more abundant than thought in the early days of nuclear reactor development, given the amount of plutonium available in spent reactor fuel, doubling time has become a less-important metric in modern breeder-reactor design."Burnup" is a measure of how much energy has been extracted from a given mass of heavy metal in fuel expressed in terms of gigawatt-days per ton of heavy metal. Burnup is an important factor in determining the types and abundances of isotopes produced by a fission reactor.
Breeder reactors, by design, have high burnup compared to a conventional reactor, as breeder reactors produce much more of their waste in the form of fission products, while most or all of the actinides are meant to be fissioned and destroyed. In the past, breeder-reactor development focused on reactors with low breeding ratios, from 1.01 for t
Research reactors are nuclear reactors that serve as a neutron source. They are called non-power reactors, in contrast to power reactors that are used for electricity production, heat generation, or maritime propulsion; the neutrons produced by a research reactor are used for neutron scattering, non-destructive testing and testing of materials, production of radioisotopes and public outreach and education. Research reactors that produce radioisotopes for medical or industrial use are sometimes called isotope reactors. Reactors that are optimised for beamline experiments nowadays compete with spallation sources. Research reactors operate at lower temperatures, they need far less fuel, far less fission products build up as the fuel is used. On the other hand, their fuel requires more enriched uranium up to 20% U-235, although some use 93% U-235, they have a high power density in the core, which requires special design features. Like power reactors, the core needs cooling natural or forced convection with water, a moderator is required to slow the neutron velocities and enhance fission.
As neutron production is their main function, most research reactors benefit from reflectors to reduce neutron loss from the core. The International Atomic Energy Agency and the U. S. Department of Energy initiated a program in 1978 to develop the means to convert research reactors from using enriched uranium to the use of low enriched uranium, in support of its nonproliferation policy. By that time the U. S. had supplied research reactors and enriched uranium to 41 countries as part of its Atoms for Peace program. In 2004, the U. S. Department of Energy extended its Foreign Research Reactor Spent Nuclear Fuel Acceptance program until 2019. In 2004, the Texas A&M reactor switched to LEU after decades using HEU; these changes are a part of an anti-terrorism initiative since 9/11 begun by the Bush Administration. While in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s there were a number of companies that specialized in the design and construction of research reactors, the activity of this market cooled down afterwards, many companies withdrew.
The market has consolidated today into a few companies that concentrate the key projects on a worldwide basis. The most recent international tender for a research reactor was that organized by ANSTO for the design and commissioning of the OPAL reactor. Four companies were prequalified: AECL, INVAP, Siemens and Technicatom; the project was awarded to INVAP. In recent years, AECL withdrew from this market, Siemens and Technicatom activities were merged into AREVA. Aqueous homogeneous reactor Argonaut class reactor DIDO class, six high-flux reactors worldwide TRIGA, a successful class with >50 installations worldwide SLOWPOKE reactor class, developed by AECL, Canada Miniature neutron source reactor, based on the SLOWPOKE design, developed by AECL exported by China - A more complete list can be found at the List of nuclear research reactors. Research centers that operate a reactor: Decommissioned research reactors: WNA Information Paper # 61: Research Reactors Nuclear Nonproliferation: DOE Needs to Take Action to Further Reduce the Use of Weapons-Usable Uranium in Civilian Research Reactors, GAO, July 2004, GAO-04-807 IAEA searchable list of Nuclear Research Reactors in the world The National Organization of Test and Training Reactors, Inc.
NMI3 - EU-FP7 Integrated Infrastructure Initiative for Neutron Scattering and Muon Spectroscopy
Sellafield is a nuclear fuel reprocessing and nuclear decommissioning site, close to the village of Seascale on the coast of the Irish Sea in Cumbria, England. The site is served by Sellafield railway station. Sellafield incorporates the original nuclear reactor site at Windscale, which as of April 2019 is undergoing decommissioning and dismantling, Calder Hall, a neighbour of Windscale, undergoing decommissioning and dismantling of its four nuclear power generating reactors, it is the site of the world's first commercial nuclear power station to generate electricity on an industrial scale. Sellafield was owned and operated by the Ministry of Supply from 1954 by the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority and following the division of UKAEA in 1971, by British Nuclear Fuels Ltd. Since 1 April 2005, it has been owned by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority and is now operated by Sellafield Ltd. In 2008, the NDA awarded Nuclear Management Partners the position of Parent Body Organisation of Sellafield Ltd. under their standard management model for NDA sites.
This consortium, composed of US company URS, British company AMEC, Areva of France, was awarded a contract for five years, with extension options to 17 years. On 13 January 2015, the NDA announced that NMP would lose the management contract for Sellafield Ltd. as the "complexity and technical uncertainties presented greater challenges than other NDA sites", the site was therefore "less well suited" to the NDA's existing standard management model. The new structure, which came into effect on 1 April 2016, saw Sellafield Ltd. become a subsidiary of the NDA. Activities at the Sellafield site support decommissioning of historic plants, reprocessing fuel from UK and international nuclear reactors. Decommissioning projects include the Windscale Piles, Calder Hall, historic reprocessing facilities, waste stores, as well as other clean-up projects on the site. Reprocessing plants include the THORP nuclear fuel reprocessing plant, the Magnox nuclear fuel reprocessing plant, the Waste Vitrification Plant.
The site contains several nuclear waste stores, with the Low Level Waste Repository 6 km away at Drigg. The UK's National Nuclear Laboratory has its Central Laboratory on the Sellafield site. Sellafield was a small rural community situated on the west coast of North-West England in the current county of Cumbria in the parish of St Bridget Beckermet between the rivers Calder and Ehen, it consisted of High Sellafield and Low Sellafield, which became incorporated in the Sellafield Royal Ordnance Factory during its construction in the Second World War. The coming of the railway to west Cumberland in the mid-19th century, the opening of Sellafield station and Sellafield junction, provided important transport links for a remote part of England. ROF Sellafield was constructed by John Laing & Son in 1942 at Low Sellafield as a Second World War ROF; the nearby sister factory, ROF Drigg which produced TNT had been constructed in 1940, 5 km to the south-east and adjacent to the village of Drigg. ROF Drigg and ROF Sellafield were built in these isolated and remote coastal sites because of the hazardous nature of the process and to minimise the risk of enemy air attack.
They were both classed as Explosive ROFs specialising in high-explosive TNT and propellant, production ceased at both factories following the defeat of Japan. After the war, the Sellafield site was in the ownership of Courtaulds for development as a factory, but was reacquired by the Ministry of Supply to adapt the site for the production of materials for nuclear weapons, principally plutonium. Construction of the nuclear facilities commenced in September 1947; the site was renamed Windscale Works to avoid confusion with the Springfields uranium processing factory near Preston. The building of the nuclear plants at Windscale Works was a huge construction project, requiring a peak of 5,000 workers; the two air-cooled and open-circuit, graphite-moderated Windscale reactors constituted the first British weapons grade plutonium-239 production facility, built for the British nuclear weapons programme of the late 1940s and the 1950s. Windscale Pile No. 1 was operational in October 1950, Pile No. 2 in June 1951.
Pile 1 was the site in 1957 of the Windscale fire, the worst nuclear accident in UK history, ranked in severity at level 5 out of a possible 7 on the International Nuclear Event Scale. Windscale was also the site of the prototype British advanced gas-cooled reactor. With the creation of the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority in 1954, ownership of Windscale Works passed to the UKAEA; the first of four Magnox reactors became operational in 1956 at Calder Hall, adjacent to Windscale and across the River Calder, the site became Windscale and Calder Works. Following the break-up of the UKAEA into a research division and a production division, British Nuclear Fuels Ltd in 1971, the major part of the site was transferred to BNFL. In 1981 BNFL's Windscale and Calder Works was renamed Sellafield as part of a major reorganisation of the site – up to that time there was a General Manager of Windscale Works and a General Manager of Calder Works, but afterwards there was one Head of the entire BNFL Sellafield site – as well as to attempt to disassociate the site from press reports about its safety.
The remainder of the site
Oak Ridge, Tennessee
Oak Ridge is a city in Anderson and Roane counties in the eastern part of the U. S. state of Tennessee, about 25 miles west of Knoxville. Oak Ridge's population was 29,330 at the 2010 census, it is part of the Knoxville Metropolitan Area. Oak Ridge's nicknames include the Atomic City, the Secret City, the Ridge, the City Behind the Fence. Oak Ridge was established in 1942 as a production site for the Manhattan Project—the massive American and Canadian operation that developed the atomic bomb; as it is still the site of Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Y-12 National Security Complex, scientific development still plays a crucial role in the city's economy and culture in general. The earliest substantial occupation of the Oak Ridge area occurred during the Woodland period, although artifacts dating to the Paleo-Indian period have been found throughout the Clinch Valley. Two Woodland mound sites—the Crawford Farm Mounds and the Freels Farm Mounds—were uncovered in the 1930s as part of the Norris Basin salvage excavations.
Both sites were located just southeast of the former Scarboro community. The Bull Bluff site, occupied during both the Woodland and Mississippian periods, was uncovered in the 1960s in anticipation of the construction of Melton Hill Dam. Bull Bluff is a cliff located southeast of Haw Ridge, opposite Melton Hill Park; the Oak Ridge area was uninhabited by the time Euro-American explorers and settlers arrived in the late 18th century, although the Cherokee claimed the land as part of their hunting grounds. During the early 19th century, several rural farming communities developed in the Oak Ridge area, namely Edgemoor and Elza in the northeast, East Fork and Wheat in the southwest, Robertsville in the west, Bethel and Scarboro in the southeast; the European-American settlers who founded these communities arrived in the late 1790s following the American Revolutionary War and after the Cherokee signed the Treaty of Holston, ceding what is now Anderson County to the United States. According to local tradition, John Hendrix, an eccentric local resident regarded as a mystic, prophesied the establishment of Oak Ridge some 40 years before construction began.
Upset by the death of his young daughter and the subsequent departure of his wife and remaining family, he became religious and told his neighbors he was seeing visions. When he described his visions, people thought. According to several published accounts, one vision that he described was considered to be a description of the city and production facilities built 28 years after his death, to be used in World War II; the version recalled by neighbors and relatives has been reported as follows: In the woods, as I lay on the ground and looked up into the sky, there came to me a voice as loud and as sharp as thunder. The voice told me to sleep with my head on the ground for 40 nights and I would be shown visions of what the future holds for this land.... And I tell you, Bear Creek Valley someday will be filled with great buildings and factories, they will help toward winning the greatest war that will be, and there will be a city on Black Oak Ridge and the center of authority will be on a spot middle-way between Sevier Tadlock's farm and Joe Pyatt's Place.
A railroad spur will branch off the main L&N line, run down toward Robertsville and branch off and turn toward Scarborough. Big engines will dig big ditches, thousands of people will be running to and fro, they will be building things, there will be great noise and confusion and the earth will shake. I've seen it. It's coming. In 1942, the United States federal government chose the area as a site for developing materials for the Manhattan Project. Maj. Gen. Leslie Groves, military head of the Manhattan Project, liked the area for several reasons, its low population made acquisition affordable, yet the area was accessible by both highway and rail, utilities such as water and electricity were available due to the recent completion of Norris Dam. The project location was established within a 17-mile-long valley; this feature was linear and partitioned by several ridges, providing natural protection against the spread of disasters at the four major industrial plants—so they wouldn't blow up "like firecrackers on a string."When the Governor of Tennessee Prentice Cooper was handed by a junior officer the July 1943 presidential proclamation making Oak Ridge a military district not subject to state control, he tore it up and refused to see the MED Engineer, Lt. Col. James C. Marshall.
The new District Engineer Kenneth Nichols had to placate him. Cooper came to see the project on November 3, 1943. House and dormitory accommodations at the Clinton Engineer Works in Oak Ridge and Hanford Engineer Works in Washington State were basic, with coal rather than oil or electric furnaces, but they were of a higher standard than Director Groves would have liked, were better than at Los Alamos. Medical care was provided by Army doctors and hospitals, with civilians paying $2.50 per month to the medical insurance fund. The location and low population helped keep the town a secret, though the population of the settlement grew from about 3,000 in 1942 to about 75,000 by 1945; the K-25 uranium-separating facility by itself covered 44 acres and was the largest building in the world at that time. The name "Oak Ridge" was chosen for the settlement in 1943 from among suggestions submitted by project employees; the name related to the settlement's location along Blac
National Register of Historic Places listings in Butte County, Idaho
This is a list of the National Register of Historic Places listings in Butte County, Idaho. This is intended to be a complete list of the properties on the National Register of Historic Places in Butte County, United States. Latitude and longitude coordinates are provided for many National Register districts. There are 3 properties listed on the National Register in the county, including 1 National Historic Landmark. More may be added; this National Park Service list is complete through NPS recent listings posted April 12, 2019. List of National Historic Landmarks in Idaho National Register of Historic Places listings in Idaho
Beaver Valley Nuclear Power Station
Beaver Valley Power Station is a nuclear power plant covering 1,000 acres near Shippingport, United States, 34 miles northwest of Pittsburgh. The Beaver Valley plant is operated by FirstEnergy Nuclear Operating Corporation; this plant has two Westinghouse pressurized water reactors. While the Shippingport Reactor has been decommissioned, Beaver Valley Units 1 and 2 are still licensed and in operation. FirstEnergy announced that Beaver Valley is expected to close in 2021 without legislative relief or sale to another utility company; the Nuclear Regulatory Commission defines two emergency planning zones around nuclear power plants: a plume exposure pathway zone with a radius of 10 miles, concerned with exposure to, inhalation of, airborne radioactive contamination, an ingestion pathway zone of about 50 miles, concerned with ingestion of food and liquid contaminated by radioactivity. The 2010 U. S. population within 10 miles of Beaver Valley was 114,514, a decrease of 6.6 percent in a decade, according to an analysis of U.
S. Census data for msnbc.com. The 2010 U. S. population within 50 miles was 3,140,766, a decrease of 3.7 percent since 2000. Cities within 50 miles include Pittsburgh; the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's estimate of the risk each year of an earthquake intense enough to cause core damage to the reactor at Beaver Valley was Reactor 1: 1 in 20,833. Beaver Valley 1 was used as the reference design for the French nuclear plant at Fessenheim. Shippingport Reactor - Located adjacent to the Beaver Valley Power Station "Pennsylvania Nuclear Profile". Energy Information Administration, U. S. Department of Energy. 2010. Retrieved 2016-11-01. "Beaver Valley Power Station". Operating Nuclear Power Reactors. U. S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. April 1, 2016. Retrieved 2016-11-01. Media related to Beaver Valley Power Station at Wikimedia Commons