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The Department of Energy Replacement for the 110-Gallon Specification 6M Shipping Container for Radioactive Contents

[+] Author Affiliations
Jeffrey G. Arbital

BMW Y-12 LLC, Oak Ridge, TN

Paul T. Mann

U.S. Department of Energy, Albuquerque, NM

Paper No. PVP2008-61216, pp. 195-200; 6 pages
  • ASME 2008 Pressure Vessels and Piping Conference
  • Volume 7: Operations, Applications and Components
  • Chicago, Illinois, USA, July 27–31, 2008
  • Conference Sponsors: Pressure Vessels and Piping
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4830-2 | eISBN: 0-7918-3828-5


The Department of Energy (DOE) has been shipping university reactor fuels and other fissile materials in the 110-gallon Department of Transportation (DOT) Specification 6M container for over 20 years. The DOT 6M container has been the workhorse for many DOE programs. However, packages designed and used according to the Specification 6M (U. S. Code of Federal Regulations, 49 CFR 178.354; 2003) do not conform to the latest package safety requirements in 10 CFR 71, especially performance under hypothetical accident conditions. For that reason, the 6M specification containers are being terminated by the DOT. Packages designed to the 6M specification will no longer be allowed for in-commerce shipments after October 1, 2008. To meet on-going transportation needs, DOE evaluated several different concepts for replacing the 110-gallon 6M. After this evaluation, DOE selected the Y-12 National Security Complex for the project. The new Y-12 container, designated the ES-4100 shipping container, will have a capacity of four times the current 6M and will be certified by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). The ES-4100 project began in September 2006 and prototypes of the new container are now being fabricated. Details on the design features and the upcoming regulatory testing of this new container are discussed in this paper.

Topics: Containers



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