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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)


IDAHO NATIONAL LABORATORY


Fuel Storage Area - (FSA) 603/651/666/749

Located at INTEC (formerly the ICPP) the Fuel Storage Area was comprised of various buildings for both wet and dry storage of irradiated and unirradiated nuclear fuels. The primary FSA facilities included CPP-603 and CPP-666, both of which provided underwater fuel storage primarily for spent Navy fuels. CPP-651, though not normally occupied, underwent a systematic fuel storage review that identified a series of administrative violations of technical specifications for fuel storage.

The CPP-603 Fuel Receiving and Storage Facility was one of the first INTEC facilities to begin operating 1952. It served as the only underwater fuel storage facility until 1984 when CPP-666, a more modern facility, started receiving spent nuclear fuels (SNF). Other underwater storage facilities later included the Materials Test Reactor canal, the Power Burst Facility reactor canal, and the Test Area North storage pools. CPP-603 was used in the storage of irradiated metallic clad fuels from the Argonne National Laboratory-West-operated Experimental Breeder Reactor-II at the INL, three reactors at the Test Reactor Area, the navy's nuclear operations, as well as other country-wide, government-operated reactors, including others at the INL. The dry, graphite-type fuels and fuel from ROVER, Fort St. Vrain, Peach Bottom, and TREAT were kept at the building's above-ground, collocated Irradiated Fuel Storage Facility (IFSF), formerly called the Graphite Fuel Storage Facility. The Underground Fuel Storage Facility (CPP-749) provided storage for Fermi I and Peach Bottom fuels.

CPP-603 was built with three interconnected water-filled basins, each 21 feet deep, which together held 1.5 million gallons of water. The dimensions of the north and middle basins were 40 feet by 60 feet, while the south basin was 45 feet by 88 feet. The purpose of the water was to remove heat from and simply the movement of SNF. The building was constructed according to the 1950s design standard, and thus the water basin pools lack stainless steel lining, systems to detect leaks, and heating and ventilation control. The basins also had known seismic construction deficiencies.

Movement of SNF from the three fuel storage basins at CPP-603 to the storage pool at CPP-666 or to dry storage in the Irradiated Fuel Storage Facility began in early 1994 under court order. These fuels consisted primarily of expended Navy fuels, but also contain a wide variety of expended fuels from foreign and domestic research reactors that are clad with aluminum, stainless steel, and zirconium. By July 1994, SNF from the first 189 storage positions in CPP-603 were moved. By September 1995, SNF from the second 189 storage positions in the north and middle basins were moved. By August 1996, the north and middle basins were emptied. On April 28, 2000, SNF was moved from the last storage position in CPP-603 to CPP-666.

The movement of SNF was just an interim step in meeting the requirements in the 1995 Idaho Settlement Agreement, which stipulated that all SNF and high-level waste (HLF) be removed from the state by January 1, 2035. The agreement also stipulated that all SNF must be in dry storage by 2023. The Settlement Agreement provided for the IFSF to continue to receive spent fuel from research reactors at home and abroad and manage SNF transfer to a planned new SNF interim storage facility where the fuel would be kept until shipment out of state. In 2000 the INL Deactivation, Decontamination and Decommissioning Program took control of the CPP-603 basins intending to drain them and eventually close the facility. As of 2008, INTEC, of which the FSA is a part, was in the process of closure by the ICP.




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