Water was found seeping from a pool at a former reactor at Oak Ridge National Laboratory one year ago, and in August, workers removed four irradiated components from the pool that produced about 96 percent of the radiation, federal officials said Thursday.
The four irradiated components weigh about 200 pounds each, said the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Environmental Management, or EM.
Water was found seeping from the reactor pool at the Oak Ridge Research Reactor during a routine inspection in September 2014. The facility, also known as Building 3042, is one of hundreds of Manhattan Project and Cold War-ear structures across the Oak Ridge Reservation monitored by the Oak Ridge Office of EM.
Nuclear research had not been conducted at the facility since 1988, but it still contained the highly irradiated components from those operations. The leak was causing the pool to lose the water that served as a protective, shielding agent for the irradiated components, officials said. [Read more…]