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Engineering Design and Construction of the Waste Control Specialists, LLC LLRW in Texas

[+] Author Affiliations
Mark S. Day, Gary M. Sandquist

URS SMS, LLC, Salt Lake City, UT

Dennis Owen

Waste Control Specialists, LLC, Andrews, TX

Paper No. ICONE20-POWER2012-54877, pp. 341-346; 6 pages
  • 2012 20th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering and the ASME 2012 Power Conference
  • Volume 4: Codes, Standards, Licensing, and Regulatory Issues; Fuel Cycle, Radioactive Waste Management and Decommissioning; Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and Coupled Codes; Instrumentation and Controls; Fuels and Combustion, Materials Handling, Emissions; Advanced Energy Systems and Renewables (Wind, Solar, Geothermal); Performance Testing and Performance Test Codes
  • Anaheim, California, USA, July 30–August 3, 2012
  • Conference Sponsors: Nuclear Engineering Division, Power Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4498-4
  • Copyright © 2012 by ASME


Waste Control Specialists, LLC, Inc. (WCS) owns 15,000 acres of property contiguous with the Texas/New Mexico border west of Andrews, Texas. Here, the first Low Level Radioactive Waste (LLRW) disposal facility in the U.S. has been designed and constructed in over 30 years. It is the only facility licensed to receive all three classes of LLRW that are suitable for near-surface disposal. The WCS facility has unique and challenging features that make it a state-of-the-art facility able to safely dispose of LLRW. The Liner system consists of multiple layers of protective features and redundant detection components. The waste matrix consists of concrete-in-concrete systems that contain the waste and provide stability for landfill. The landfill is relatively deep for a near-surface repository that allows for no surface projection at closure. Cover system consists of three separate but effective structures — performance cover, erosion protection cover, and evapotranspiration cover. During operations, the facility is designed to capture all storm water that falls on the footprint and divert water to holding ponds (non-contaminated storm water) or to large storage tanks (contact storm water) The Facility has several support systems that allow for safe and effective operations and disposal activities including but not limited to: five 500,000 gallon contact water storage tanks, a waste water treatment plant, security and fire systems, decontamination buildings, waste staging and sampling buildings, counting laboratory, gate house and administration buildings. Construction activities included pre-grading site to control storm water during construction and to provide an initial surface for landfill excavation, excavation of landfill units in excess of 100 feet deep through a cemented caliche layer, installation of access ramps to access bottom of disposal units and simultaneous construction of support facilities and buildings. A total of two landfill disposal units, seven support buildings and supporting infrastructure were constructed within 12-months.

Copyright © 2012 by ASME



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