A Case Of Hanford Nuclear Reservation Site

3420 Words14 Pages
Radioactive Contamination
Of
Soil and Groundwater
Due to Storage of Nuclear Waste
A case of Hanford Nuclear Reservation site

Name Student no
Jaysheel Pandya 1001025972

Contents
Introduction 3
Contaminants on and around the site 4
Soil and Groundwater Contamination 5
Sources of Contamination 5
Physical and Hydrogeological conditions of the site and waste transport pathways 6
Interaction of contaminants in groundwater 9
Uranium 9
Chromium 10
Strontium 10
Remediation Strategies for Soil and Groundwater 11
Reducing recharge 12
Source Removal 12
Waste Treatment and Waste Immobilization 12
Soil Vapour Extraction 12
Calcium-phosphate Barrier 13
Pump-And-Treat 13
Phytoremediation 13
References 14

Table of
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The site was divided into several facilities carrying out various activities to develop weapons and store and dispose of nuclear waste. Within the first two years MEDACE had built a nuclear reactor, underground waste storage tanks and a nuclear fabrication facility. All the facilities were in operation to develop plutonium fuels for military defense (Gephart and Lundgren 1998).
The site was in operation for 44 years and was decommissioned in 1987 (Wald, 1998). During this period, approximately 110,000 tons of nuclear fuel were processed at Hanford Site (Wald, 1998; Gephart and Lundgren 1998). It produced 73 tons of nuclear weapons and reactor fuel-grade plutonium during the time of its operations (Gephart and Lundgren 1998). The production of nuclear weapons and nuclear fuels generated huge quantities of highly radioactive waste which was stored in underground storage tanks.
Most liquids from single-shell tanks have been pumped to the newer double shelled tank over the years, to remove the remaining 9000 cubic meter of drainable liquid (Hanlon 2003). Salt cake and thick waste sludge was left behind in the tank. No double shell tank has leakages till date, even though the design life of oldest ones has been reached (Hanlon 2003).
However majority of single shelled tank exhibited some kind of leakages ultimately contaminating the site. The U.S Department of Energy (DOE) currently manages the site and is responsible for cleaning
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