Caithness Map :: Links to Site Map Paying too much for broadband? Move to PlusNet broadband and save£££s. Free setup now available - terms apply. PlusNet broadband.  

 

New Vaults Signal Start Of Waste Clearance

24th March 2011

Photograph of New Vaults Signal Start Of Waste Clearance

The clearance of tens of thousands of tonnes of radioactive waste from the redundant nuclear site at Dounreay today moved a step closer.

Dounreay Site Restoration Ltd announced the formal award of a contract to develop a disposal site for low-level waste from the decommissioning and closure of the site.

GRAHAM Construction will build the first two of up to six underground vaults capable of taking up 175,000m3 of radioactive debris from the clean-out and demolition of Britain's 20th century experiment with fast breeder reactors.

Low level waste accounts for more than 80 per cent by volume of the radioactive waste that will be produced during demolition of the site, but less than 0.01 per cent by radioactivity.

Since decommissioning started over a decade ago, approximately 11,500m3 of low-level waste has been processed and accumulated on the site.

The scheduled opening of the first vault in 2013, subject to regulatory and other consents, will herald the beginning of waste clearance from the site.

The disposal site is located adjacent to the redundant nuclear site on land owned by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority

GRAHAM is expected to move its team into position in September and start ground excavation in October.

Approximately 140,000 metres of rock will be removed to make way for each vault.

Some of the rock from later phases will be crushed and recycled as aggregate to landscape the flattened nuclear plant, reducing the total bill for site restoration by several million pounds.

Some 8000 tonnes of aggregate made from the crushed rubble of buildings already razed is being used to build the roads and hardstanding areas at the new waste disposal site.

DSRL project manager Audrey Cooper said: "We're aggressively reducing the amount of waste we generate in the first place through new, more efficient ways to decommission and better ways to segregate and reduce the volume of contaminated waste. We expect this to reduce the total size of the facility we will need to build and bring down the cost to the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority even further."

GRAHAM's contract is for the first phase of the project - the design and construction of two vaults - and is valued at approximately 13 million.

Leo Martin, Director at GRAHAM, said: "The contract to design and build the new low level waste disposal facility at Dounreay is an important one for GRAHAM and it is our firm intention that the delivery of this project makes a positive contribution to the Caithness economy.

"We are therefore actively seeking to foster local involvement and enterprise through the use of local labour, equipment and materials and will aim to utilise the skills and experience of local small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs) wherever possible.

"We will be working hard with DSRL over the coming months on the design of the facilities and aim to commence on site this autumn."

The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority is investing 4 million in a community benefit fund attached to the development. The first payment of 1 million is due when construction starts in October.

Graham Construction web site www.graham.co.uk/

Graham Construction Ltd is an Irish company that has expanded across the UK with bases in Edinburgh and Glasgow. They employ almost 400 staff in Scotland mainly in the two main Scottish cities.
They have recently been awarded the conartract by Highland Council to build the new Aviemore Primary School at a cost of 11.9 million. The turf cutting ceramony too place for that contract on 23 March 2011.

 

Related Businesses

 

Related Articles

30/3/2015
Removal of trapped fuel elements from the Dounreay Fast Reactor Thumbnail for article : Removal of trapped fuel elements from the Dounreay Fast Reactor
The removal of trapped fuel elements from the Dounreay Fast Reactor moved a step closer with the successful trial of bespoke equipment to lift off the top plate.   Decommissioning the 50-year-old experimental reactor is one of the most technically challenging projects in the NDA estate.  
30/3/2015
NDA sets out Dounreay clean-up tasksThumbnail for article : NDA sets out Dounreay clean-up tasks
The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, the public body that owns Dounreay and funds its clean up, has published its annual business plan, setting out key tasks for the site licence company DSRL to deliver in the next 12 months.   These include: - Decontamination of Prototype Fast Reactor pond to meet regulatory requirements - Completion of construction of new fuel characterisation facilities - Material Test Reactor raffinate immobilisation complete - Continuous improvement in health, safety and environmental performance.  
30/3/2015
NDA Sets Out SME Spending
Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) estate has measured that over 21% of its spend is with SMEs.  This equates to over £330 million spent out of our total annual supply chain spend of £1.7 billion.  
24/3/2015
Partnership agreement between North Highland College and Dounreay Site Restoration LtdThumbnail for article : Partnership agreement between North Highland College and Dounreay Site Restoration Ltd
A NEW partnership agreement has been signed to develop and deliver training required at the Dounreay site during decommissioning work and help staff gain the qualifications they need to transfer to other employment sectors as the site closure progresses.   Dounreay Site Restoration Limited (DSRL), responsible for the clean-up and demolition of Britain's former centre of fast reactor research and development, has established a memorandum of understanding with North Highland College UHI and the University of the Highlands and Islands to help close collaboration working and academic links across further and higher education and the nuclear industry.  
19/3/2015
New Archive Centre At Wick A Step Closer As Proposals Go To Council Planning CommitteeThumbnail for article : New Archive Centre At Wick A Step Closer As Proposals Go To Council Planning Committee
The regeneration of Wick will be given another boost if the planning committee on 24th March 2015 as expected approve the building of a new Archive Centre for Nuclear records in the UK.  The Highland council archive centre currently based at Wick library will also relocate to the new building where it will occupy a small part of it.  
9/12/2014
NDA Launches Consultation On New 3 Year plan
Consultation began on 8th December 2014 on the Draft Business Plan 2015 to 2018 that sets out the key objectives and plans for delivering the NDA priorities over the next three years.   The total planned expenditure for 2015/16 is £3.31 billion, of which £2.09 billion will be funded by UK government and £1.22 billion by income from commercial operations.  
9/12/2014
Nuclear Archive Plans Move Forward
Public consultation continues on NDA's plan for a nuclear archive at Wick in Scotland.  It will house over 70 years' worth of historic information from across UK's civil nuclear industry.  
7/12/2014
Reactor control room moves to a new homeThumbnail for article : Reactor control room moves to a new home
Last week saw the last of the Dounreay Materials Testing Reactor (DMTR) control room panels shipped off site and transferred to their new home in local five-star visitor attraction Caithness Horizons.   The control room panels and control desk have been donated to Caithness Horizons and reconstructed at the museum to form the basis of a new permanent exhibition representing Dounreay's significant part in Scotland's industrial heritage.  
30/9/2014
Nuclear Archive At Wick - Pre-Qualification For Contractors Announced
Pre-qualification to find a contractor to build a new national nuclear archive in Wick has commenced, it has been announced.   The total cost of the new archive is in the region of £17 million.  
18/9/2014
NDA supply chain event proving popular once moreThumbnail for article : NDA supply chain event proving popular once more
Almost 800 delegates have already signed up to attend the NDA estate's 2014 event for suppliers in November - but there is still room for several hundred more visitors.   The exhibition hall meanwhile is approaching full capacity, providing delegates with the opportunity to meet with 260 companies from across the supply chain.  

[Printer Friendly Version]