Science.gov

Sample records for humeca uranium mill

  1. Uranium mill tailings and radon

    SciTech Connect

    Hanchey, L A

    1981-04-01

    The major health hazard from uranium mill tailings is presumed to be respiratory cancer resulting from the inhalation of radon daughter products. A review of studies on inhalation of radon and its daughters indicates that the hazard from the tailings is extremely small. If the assumptions used in the studies are correct, one or two people per year in the United States may develop cancer as a result of radon exhaled from all the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action program sites. The remedial action should reduce the hazard from the tailings by a factor of about 100.

  2. Uranium mill tailings and radon

    SciTech Connect

    Hanchey, L A

    1981-01-01

    The major health hazard from uranium mill tailings is presumed to be respiratory cancer resulting from the inhalation of radon daughter products. A review of studies on inhalation of radon and its daughters indicates that the hazard from the tailings is extremely small. If the assumptions used in the studies are correct, one or two people per year in the US may develop cancer as a result of radon exhaled from all the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Program sites. The remedial action should reduce the hazard from the tailings by a factor of about 100.

  3. Uranium mill ore dust characterization

    SciTech Connect

    Knuth, R.H.; George, A.C.

    1980-11-01

    Cascade impactor and general air ore dust measurements were taken in a uranium processing mill in order to characterize the airborne activity, the degree of equilibrium, the particle size distribution and the respirable fraction for the /sup 238/U chain nuclides. The sampling locations were selected to limit the possibility of cross contamination by airborne dusts originating in different process areas of the mill. The reliability of the modified impactor and measurement techniques was ascertained by duplicate sampling. The results reveal no significant deviation from secular equilibrium in both airborne and bulk ore samples for the /sup 234/U and /sup 230/Th nuclides. In total airborne dust measurements, the /sup 226/Ra and /sup 210/Pb nuclides were found to be depleted by 20 and 25%, respectively. Bulk ore samples showed depletions of 10% for the /sup 226/Ra and /sup 210/Pb nuclides. Impactor samples show disequilibrium of /sup 226/Ra as high as +-50% for different size fractions. In these samples the /sup 226/Ra ratio was generally found to increase as particle size decreased. Activity median aerodynamic diameters of the airborne dusts ranged from 5 to 30 ..mu..m with a median diameter of 11 ..mu..m. The maximum respirable fraction for the ore dusts, based on the proposed International Commission on Radiological Protection's (ICRP) definition of pulmonary deposition, was < 15% of the total airborne concentration. Ore dust parameters calculated for impactor duplicate samples were found to be in excellent agreement.

  4. Uranium mill tailings quarterly report, January-March 1982

    SciTech Connect

    Latkovich, J.M.

    1982-05-01

    Progress is reported on: radon barrier systems for uranium mill tailings; liner evaluation for uranium mill tailings; revegetation/rock cover for stabilization of inactive U-tailings sites; and application of long-term chemical biobarriers for uranium tailings.

  5. Radiological health aspects of uranium milling

    SciTech Connect

    Fisher, D.R.; Stoetzel, G.A.

    1983-05-01

    This report describes the operation of conventional and unconventional uranium milling processes, the potential for occupational exposure to ionizing radiation at the mill, methods for radiological safety, methods of evaluating occupational radiation exposures, and current government regulations for protecting workers and ensuring that standards for radiation protection are adhered to. In addition, a survey of current radiological health practices is summarized.

  6. MILDOS uranium milling dose assessment code update.

    SciTech Connect

    LePoire, D. J.; Arnish, J. J.; Chen, S. Y.; Faillace, E. R.; Yuan, Y. C.; Schmidt, D. W.; Environmental Assessment; Washington Group International; NRC

    2001-11-01

    The MILDOS-AREA code was developed to estimate radiological doses and risks from uranium milling activities. The code has been used for demonstrating radiological compliance regarding the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission's licensing requirements for uranium milling activities. The code was recently updated with an enhanced software package to address the following four areas: regulatory changes, in-situ leaching extraction technologies, software user interfaces, and software distribution technologies via the internet. Users can now specify in-situ leaching processes through a Windows object-based Geographic information System interface with incorporated updated regulation methodologies. The code and documentation are freely distributed through the Internet.

  7. Domestic uranium mining and milling

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1983-01-01

    A field hearing was held in Riverton, Wyoming on the erosion of the state's uranium industry as production and capital investment have declined and inventories have continued to rise because of a shift to foreign suppliers. The result has been serious unemployment in Wyoming and a decline in uranium mines from 5400 in 1980 to the present 1200. The seven witnesses spoke for the mining industry and state and federal government. Among the issues raised were mining regulations and the cancellation of nuclear rejects which have impacted the health of the industry. Additional statements and a report supplied for the record follow their testimony. (DCK)

  8. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project surface project management plan

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-09-01

    This Project Management Plan describes the planning, systems, and organization that shall be used to manage the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project (UMTRA). US DOE is authorized to stabilize and control surface tailings and ground water contamination at 24 inactive uranium processing sites and associated vicinity properties containing uranium mill tailings and related residual radioactive materials.

  9. Engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1981-07-01

    The Grand Junction site has been reevaluated in order to revise the October 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings at Grand Junction, Colorado. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 1.9 million tons of tailings at the Grand Junction site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation are also factors. The eight alternative actions presented herein range from millsite and off-site decontamination with the addition of 3 m of stabilization cover material (Option I), to removal of the tailings to remote disposal sites and decontamination of the tailings site (Options II through VIII). Cost estimates for the eight options range from about $10,200,000 for stabilization in-place to about $39,500,000 for disposal in the DeBeque area, at a distance of about 35 mi, using transportation by rail. If transportation to DeBeque were by truck, the cost estimated to be about $41,900,000. Three principal alternatives for the reprocessing of the Grand Junction tailings were examined: (a) heap leaching; (b) treatment at an existing mill; and (c) reprocessing at a new conventional mill constructed for tailings reprocessing. The cost of the uranium recovered would be about $200/lb by heap leach and $150/lb by conventional plant processes. The spot market price for uranium was $25/lb early in 1981. Therefore, reprocessing the tailings for uranium recovery appears not to be economically attractive.

  10. Grouting of uranium mill tailings piles

    SciTech Connect

    Boegly, W.J. Jr.; Tamura, T.; Williams, J.D.

    1984-03-01

    A program of remedial action was initiated for a number of inactive uranium mill tailings piles. These piles result from mining and processing of uranium ores to meet the nation's defense and nuclear power needs and represent a potential hazard to health and the environment. Possible remedial actions include the application of covers to reduce radon emissions and airborne transport of the tailings, liners to prevent groundwater contamination by leachates from the piles, physical or chemical stabilization of the tailings, or moving the piles to remote locations. Conventional installation of liners would require excavation of the piles to emplace the liner; however, utilization of grouting techniques, such as those used in civil engineering to stabilize soils, might be a potential method of producing a liner without excavation. Laboratory studies on groutability of uranium mill tailings were conducted using samples from three abandoned piles and employing a number of particulate and chemical grouts. These studies indicate that it is possible to alter the permeability of the tailings from ambient values of 10/sup -3/ cm/s to values approaching 10/sup -7/ cm/s using silicate grouts and to 10/sup -8/ cm/s using acrylamide and acrylate grouts. An evaluation of grouting techniques, equipment required, and costs associated with grouting were also conducted and are presented. 10 references, 1 table.

  11. Monitoring of Uranium Mining and Milling Operations

    SciTech Connect

    Curtis, Michael M.

    2004-12-01

    The International Atomic Energy Agency's Additional Protocol has engendered the monitoring of past and present uranium mining and milling operations by the IAEA. This activity requires tools, instruments, and expertise unfamiliar to Agency safeguards inspectors, but methods and instruments for effecting such monitoring are currently being employed by geologists, geophysicists, mining engineers, environmental officials, and archaeologists. Remote sensing in the form of photography, radar imagery, and gamma ray spectroscopy complements field data by disclosing prior mine-related activities or the magnitude of present ones, including: surveying pit volumes, mapping the spatial distribution of mine tailings over time, identifying soil and mineral disparities, and revealing biophysical data.

  12. Intense alpha-particle emitting crystallites in uranium mill wastes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Landa, E.R.; Stieff, L.R.; Germani, M.S.; Tanner, A.B.; Evans, J.R.

    1994-01-01

    Nuclear emulsion microscopy has demonstrated the presence of small, intense ??-particle emitting crystallites in laboratory-produced tailings derived from the sulfuric acid milling of uranium ores. The ??-particle activity is associated with the isotope pair 210Pb 210Po, and the host mineral appears to be PbSO4 occurring as inclusions in gypsum laths. These particles represent potential inhalation hazards at uranium mill tailings disposal areas. ?? 1994.

  13. Thermal stabilization of uranium mill tailings

    SciTech Connect

    Dreesen, D.R.; Williams, J.M.; Cokal, E.J.

    1981-01-01

    The sintering of tailings at high temperatures (1200/sup 0/C) has shown promise as a conditioning approach that greatly reduces the /sup 222/Rn emanation of uranium mill tailings. The structure of thermally stabilized tailings has been appreciably altered producing a material that will have minimal management requirements and will be applicable to on-site processing and disposal. The mineralogy of untreated tailings is presented to define the structure of the original materials. Quartz predominates in most tailings samples; however, appreciable quantities of gypsum, clay, illite, or albites are found in some tailings. Samples from the Durango and Shiprock sites have plagioclase-type aluminosilicates and non-aluminum silicates as major components. The iron-rich vanadium tailings from the Salt Lake City site contain appreciable quantities of ..cap alpha..-hematite and chloroapatite. The reduction in radon emanation power and changes in mineralogy as a function of sintering temperature (500 to 1200(NiAsS) are considered possible species for consideraed. The calculated activity data of the various carbonate, sulfate and hydroxide species in the Li/sup +/Na/sup +/K/sup +//CO/sub 3/ = SO/sub 4/ = OH/sup -/ system have been combined f liquidus surfaces, and estimated error limits are given for each system. A comng payback period, but as the initial cost of the SAHPS is reduced and fuel prices increase, the payback period of a SAHPS will be shorter and could be competitive with other conventional heating/cooling systems.

  14. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action 1993 Roadmap

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1993-10-18

    The 1993 Roadmap for the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project office is a tool to assess and resolve issues. The US Department of Energy (DOE) UMTRA Project Office uses the nine-step roadmapping process as a basis for Surface and Groundwater Project planning. This is the second year the Roadmap document has been used to identify key issues and assumptions, develop logic diagrams, and outline milestones. This document is a key element of the DOE planning process. A multi-interest group used the nine-step process to focus on issues, root cause analysis and resolutions. This core group updated and incorporated comments on the basic assumptions, then used these assumptions to identify issues. The list of assumptions was categorized into the following areas: institutional, regulatory compliance, project management, human resource requirements, and other site-specific assumptions. The group identified 10 issues in the analysis phase. All of the issues are ranked according to importance. The number one issue from the 1992 Roadmap, ``Lack of sufficient human resources,`` remained the number one issue in 1993. The issues and their ranking are as follows: Lack of sufficient human resources; increasing regulatory requirements; unresolved groundwater issues; extension of UMTRCA through September 30, 1998; lack of post-UMTRA and post-cell closure policies; unpredictable amounts and timing of Federal funding; lack of regulatory compliance agreements; problem with states providing their share of remedial action costs; different interests and priorities among participants; and technology development/transfer. The issues are outlined and analyzed in detail in Section 8.0, with a schedule for resolution of these issues in Section 9.0.

  15. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site in Lakeview, Oregon

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-10-01

    This Baseline Risk Assessment of Ground Water Contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site in Lake view, Oregon evaluates potential impacts to public health or the environment resulting from ground water contamination at the former uranium mill processing site.

  16. Accelerated aging tests of liners for uranium mill tailings disposal

    SciTech Connect

    Barnes, S.M.; Buelt, J.L.; Hale, V.Q.

    1981-11-01

    This document describes the results of accelerated aging tests to determine the long-term effectiveness of selected impoundment liner materials in a uranium mill tailings environment. The study was sponsored by the US Department of Energy under the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project. The study was designed to evaluate the need for, and the performance of, several candidate liners for isolating mill tailings leachate in conformance with proposed Environmental Protection Agency and Nuclear Regulatory Commission requirements. The liners were subjected to conditions known to accelerate the degradation mechanisms of the various liners. Also, a test environment was maintained that modeled the expected conditions at a mill tailings impoundment, including ground subsidence and the weight loading of tailings on the liners. A comparison of installation costs was also performed for the candidate liners. The laboratory testing and cost information prompted the selection of a catalytic airblown asphalt membrane and a sodium bentonite-amended soil for fiscal year 1981 field testing.

  17. Characterization of surface soils at a former uranium mill.

    PubMed

    Johnson, J A; Meyer, H R; Vidyasagar, M

    2006-02-01

    Dawn Mining Company operated a uranium mill in Stevens County, Washington, from 1957 to 1982, to process ore from the Midnite Mine, and from 1992 through 2000, to extract uranium from mine water treatment sludge. The mill was permanently shut down in 2001 when the Dawn Mining Company radioactive materials license was amended to allow direct disposal of water treatment sludge to a tailings disposal area at the mill. The mill building was demolished in 2003. Site soil characterization took place in 2004. Soil cleanup is ongoing. Contaminated soils on the site were characterized using a GPS-based gamma scanning system. A correlation between shielded gamma exposure rate and concentration of Ra in surface soils was developed. Subsurface soils were sampled using backhoe trenches. This system proved efficient and accurate in guiding development of the remedial action planning for the site and subsequent soil cleanup. PMID:16404186

  18. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. [UMTRA project

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1989-09-01

    The mission of the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project is explicitly stated and directed in the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978, hereinafter referred to as the Act.'' Title I of the Act authorizes the Department of Energy (DOE) to undertake remedial action at designated inactive uranium processing sites (Attachment 1 and 2) and associated vicinity properties containing uranium mill tailings and other residual radioactive materials derived from the processing site. The purpose of the remedial actions is to stabilize and control such uranium mill tailings and other residual radioactive materials in a safe and environmentally sound manner to minimize radiation health hazards to the public. The principal health hazards and environmental concerns are: the inhalation of air particulates contaminated as a result of the emanation of radon from the tailings piles and the subsequent decay of radon daughters; and the contamination of surface and groundwaters with radionuclides or other chemically toxic materials. This UMTRA Project Plan identifies the mission and objectives of the project, outlines the technical and managerial approach for achieving them, and summarizes the performance, cost, and schedule baselines which have been established to guide operational activity. Estimated cost increases by 15 percent, or if the schedule slips by six months. 4 refs.

  19. Transportation of the MOAB Uranium Mill Tailings to White Mesa Mill by Slurry Pipeline

    SciTech Connect

    Hochstein, R. F.; Warner, R.; Wetz, T. V.

    2003-02-26

    The Moab uranium mill tailings pile, located at the former Atlas Minerals Corporation site approximately three miles north of Moab, Utah, is now under the control of the US Department of Energy (''DOE''). The location of the tailings pile adjacent to the Colorado River, and the ongoing contamination of groundwater and seepage of pollutants into the river, have lead to the investigation, as part of the final site remediation program, of alternatives to relocate the tailings to a qualified permanent disposal site. This paper will describe the approach being taken by the team formed between International Uranium (USA) Corporation (''IUC'') and Washington Group International (''WGINT'') to develop an innovative technical proposal to relocate the Moab tailings to IUC's White Mesa Mill south of Blanding, Utah. The proposed approach for relocating the tailings involves using a slurry pipeline to transport the tailings to the White Mesa Mill. The White Mesa Mill is a fully licensed, active uranium mill site that is uniquely suited for permanent disposal of the Moab tailings. The tailings slurry would be dewatered at the White Mesa Mill, the slurry water would be recycled to the Moab site for reuse in slurry makeup, and the ''dry'' tailings would be permanently disposed of in an approved below grade cell at the mill site.

  20. ASSESSMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL ASPECTS OF URANIUM MINING AND MILLING

    EPA Science Inventory

    This research program was initiated with the basic objective of making a preliminary assessment of the potential environmental impacts associated with the mining and milling of domestic uranium ores. All forms of pollution except radiation were considered. The program included a ...

  1. Environmental impact of uranium mining and milling: an American view

    SciTech Connect

    Momeni, M.H.

    1981-08-18

    The radiation dose rates to man from uranium milling activities are discussed. The sources of radiation, the radioisotopes involved, and the environmental exposure pathways are described. Risks of cancer to exposed individuals are presented and recommendations made for mitigation of contamination. (ACR)

  2. Uranium mill tailings and risk estimation

    SciTech Connect

    Marks, S.

    1984-04-01

    Work done in estimating projected health effects for persons exposed to mill tailings at vicinity properties is described. The effect of the reassessment of exposures at Hiroshima and Nagasaki on the risk estimates for gamma radiation is discussed. A presentation of current results in the epidemiological study of Hanford workers is included. 2 references. (ACR)

  3. Asphalt emulsion sealing of uranium mill tailings. 1979 annual report

    SciTech Connect

    Hartley, J.N.; Koehmstedt, P.L.; Esterl, D.J.; Freeman, H.D.

    1980-06-01

    Uranium mill tailings are a source of low-level radiation and radioactive materials that may be released into the environment. Stabilization or disposal of these tailings in a safe and environmentally sound way is necessary to minimize radon exhalation and other radioactive releases. One of the most promising concepts for stabilizing uranium tailings is being investigated at the Pacific Northwest Laboratory: the use of asphalt emulsion to contain radon and other potentially hazardous materials in uranium tailings. Results of these studies indicate that radon flux from uranium tailings can be reduced by greater than 99% by covering the tailings with an asphalt emulsion that is poured on or sprayed on (3.0 to 7.0 mm thick), or mixed with some of the tailings and compacted to form an admixture seal (2.5 to 15.2 cm) containing 18 wt % residual asphalt.

  4. Leaching of 226Ra from components of uranium mill tailings

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Landa, E.R.

    1991-01-01

    A sequential extraction procedure was used to characterize the geochemical forms of 226Ra retained by mixtures of quartz sand and a variety of fine-grained rock and mineral species. These mixtures had previously been exposed to the sulfuric acid milling liquor of a simulated acid-leach uranium milling circuit. For most test cases, the major fraction of the 226Ra was extracted with 1 mol/1 NH4Cl and was deemed to be exchangeable. However, 226Ra retained by the barite-containing mixture was resistant to both 1 mol/1 NH4Cl and 1 mol/HCHCl extraction. ?? 1991.

  5. Review of fugitive dust control for uranium mill tailings

    SciTech Connect

    Li, C.T.; Elmore, M.R.; Hartley, J.N.

    1983-01-01

    An immediate concern associated with the disposal of uranium mill tailings is that wind erosion of the tailings from an impoundment area will subsequently deposit tailings on surrounding areas. Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL), under contract to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, is investigating the current technology for fugitive dust control. Different methods of fugitive dust control, including chemical, physical, and vegetative, have been used or tested on mill tailings piles. This report presents the results of a literature review and discussions with manufacturers and users of available stabilization materials and techniques.

  6. Ecological aspects of microorganisms inhabiting uranium mill tailings

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Miller, C.L.; Landa, E.R.; Updegraff, D.M.

    1987-01-01

    Numbers and types of microorganisms in uranium mill tailings were determined using culturing techniques. Arthrobacter were found to be the predominant microorganism inhabiting the sandy tailings, whereas Bacillus and fungi predominated in the slime tailings. Sulfate-reducing bacteria, capable of leaching radium, were isolated in low numbers from tailings samples but were isolated in significantly high numbers from topsoil in contact with the tailings. The results are placed in the context of the magnitude of uranium mill tailings in the United States, the hazards posed by the tailings, and how such hazards could be enhanced or diminished by microbial activities. Patterns in the composition of the microbial population are evaluated with respect to the ecological variables that influence microbial growth. ?? 1987 Springer-Verlag New York Inc.

  7. Sandia's activities in uranium mill tailings remedial action

    SciTech Connect

    Neuhauser, S.

    1980-01-01

    The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 requires that remedial action be taken at over 20 inactive uranium mill tailings sites in the United States. Standards promulgated by the EPA under this act are to be the operative standards for this activity. Proposed standards must still undergo internal review, public comment, and receive Nuclear Regulatory Commission concurrence before being finalized. Briefly reviewed, the standards deal separately with new disposal sites (Part A) and cleanup of soil and contaminated structures at existing locations (Part B). In several cases, the present sites are felt to be too close to human habitations or to be otherwise unacceptably located. These tailings will probably be relocated. New disposal sites for relocated tailings must satisfy certain standards. The salient features of these standards are summarized.

  8. Uranium mill tailings remedial action project real estate management plan

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-09-01

    This plan summarizes the real estate requirements of the US Department of Energy`s (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Action (UMTRA) Project, identifies the roles and responsibilities of project participants involved in real estate activities, and describes the approaches used for completing these requirements. This document is intended to serve as a practical guide for all project participants. It is intended to be consistent with all formal agreements, but if a conflict is identified, the formal agreements will take precedence.

  9. Computational modelling of final covers for uranium mill tailings impoundments.

    PubMed

    Leoni, Guilherme Luís Menegassi; Almeida, Márcio de Souza Soares; Fernandes, Horst Monken

    2004-07-01

    To properly design a final cover for uranium mill tailings impoundments the designer must attempt to find an effective geotechnical solution which addresses the radiological and non-radiological potential impact and prevents geochemical processes from occurring within the tailings. This paper presents a computer-based method for evaluating the performance of engineered final covers for the remediation of uranium mill tailings impoundments. Three hypothetical final covers were taken from scientific literature to investigate the proposed method: (i) a compacted clay liner (CCL); (ii) a composite liner (CL) and (iii) a capillary barrier (CB). The processes investigated: (i) the saturated hydraulic flux; (ii) the unsaturated hydraulic flux (exclusively for the capillary barrier) and (iii) the radon exhalation to the atmosphere. The computer programs utilised for the analyses are: (i) Hydrologic Evaluation of Landfill Performance (HELP); (ii) SEEP/W and (iii) RADON. The site considered for the development of the research presented herein was the uranium mill tailings impoundment located at the Brazilian city of Poços de Caldas, in the Minas Gerais State. PMID:15177735

  10. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project (UMTRAP) Public Participation Plan

    SciTech Connect

    1981-05-01

    The purpose of this Public Participation Plan is to explain the Department of Energy`s plan for involving the public in the decision-making process related to the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. This project was authorized by Congress in the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978. The Act provides for a cooperative effort with affected states and Indian tribes for the eventual cleanup of abandoned or inactive uranium mill tailings sites, which are located in nine western states and in Pennsylvania. Section 111 of the Act states, ``in carrying out the provisions of this title, including the designation of processing sites, establishing priorities for such sites, the selection of remedial actions and the execution of cooperative agreements, the Secretary (of Energy), the Administrator (of the Environmental Protection Agency), and the (Nuclear Regulatory) Commission shall encourage public participation and, where appropriate, the Secretary shall hold public hearings relative to such matters in the States where processing sites and disposal sites are located.`` The objective of this document is to show when, where, and how the public will be involved in this project.

  11. Long-term stabilization of uranium mill tailings

    SciTech Connect

    Voorhees, L.D.; Sale, M.J.; Webb, J.W.; Mulholland, P.J.

    1983-01-01

    The primary hazard associated with uranium mill tailings is exposure to a radioactive gas, radon-222, the concentration of which has been correlated with the occurrence of lung cancer. Previous studies on radon attenuation conclude that the placement of earthen cover materials over the tailings is the most effective technique for reducing radioactive emissions and dispersal of tailings. The success of such a plan, however, is dependent on ensuring the long-term integrity of these cover materials. Soil erosion from water and wind is the major natural cause of destabilizing earthen cover materials. Field data related to the control of soil loss are limited and only indirectly apply to the problem of isolation of uranium mill tailings over very long time periods (up to 80,000 a). However, sufficient information is available to determine benefits that will result from the changes in specific design variables and to evaluate the need for different design strategies among potential disposal sites. The three major options available for stabilization of uranium mill tailings are: rock cover, soil and revegetation, or a combination of both on different portions of the tailings cover. The optimal choice among these alternatives depends on site-specific characteristics such as climate and local geomorphology and soils, and on design variables such as embankment, heights and slopes, modification of upstream drainage, and revegetation practices. Generally, geomorphic evidence suggests that use of soil and vegetation alone will not be adequate to reduce erosion on slopes greater than about 5 to 9%.

  12. Analysis of uranium urinalysis and in vivo measurement results from eleven participating uranium mills

    SciTech Connect

    Spitz, H.B.; Simpson, J.C.; Aldridge, T.L.

    1984-05-01

    Uranium urinalysis and in vivo examination results obtained from workers at eleven uranium mills between 1978 and 1980 were evaluated. The main purpose was to determine the degree of the mills' compliance with bioassay monitoring recommendations given in the draft NRC Regulatory Guide 8.22 (USNRC 1978). The effect of anticipated changes in the draft regulatory guidance, as expressed to PNL in May 1982, was also studied. Statistical analyses of the data showed that the bioassay results did not reliably meet the limited performance criteria given in the draft regulatory guide. Furthermore, quality control measurements of uranium in urine indicated that detection limits at ..cap alpha.. = ..beta.. = 0.05 ranged from 13 ..mu..g/l to 29 ..mu..g/l, whereas the draft regulatory guidance suggests 5 ..mu..g/l as the detection limit. Recommendations for monitoring frequencies given in the draft guide were not followed consistently from mill to mill. The results of these statistical analyses indicate a need to include performance criteria for accuracy, precision, and confidence in revisions of the draft Regulatory Guide 8.22. Revised guidance should also emphasize the need for each mill to continually test the laboratory performing urinalyses by submitting quality control samples (i.e., blank and spiked urine samples as open and blind test) to insure that the performance criteria are being met. Recommendations for a bioassay audit program are also given. 25 references, 15 figures, 17 tables.

  13. Geochemical hosts of solubilized radionuclides in uranium mill tailings

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Landa, E.R.; Bush, C.A.

    1990-01-01

    The solubilization and subsequent resorption of radionuclides by ore components or by reaction products during the milling of uranium ores may have both economic and environmental consequences. Particle-size redistribution of radium during milling has been demonstrated by previous investigators; however, the identification of sorbing components in the tailings has received little experimental attention. In this study, uranium-bearing sandstone ore was milled, on a laboratory scale, with sulfuric acid. At regular intervals, filtrate from this suspension was placed in contact with mixtures of quartz sand and various potential sorbents which occur as gangue in uranium ores; the potential sorbents included clay minerals, iron and aluminum oxides, feldspar, fluorspar, barite, jarosite, coal, and volcanic glass. After equilibration, the quartz sand-sorbent mixtures were separated from the filtrate and radioassayed by gamma-spectrometry to determine the quantities of 238U, 230Th, 226Ra, and 210Pb sorbed, and the radon emanation coefficients. Sorption of 238U was low in all cases, with maximal sorptions of 1-2% by the bentonite- and coal-bearing samples. 230Th sorption also was generally less than 1%; maximal sorption here was observed in the fluorspar-bearing sample and appears to be associated with the formation of gypsum during milling. 226Ra and 210 Pb generally showed higher sorption than the other nuclides - more than 60% of the 26Ra solubilized from the ore was sorbed on the barite-bearing sample. The mechanism (s) for this sorption by a wide variety of substrates is not yet understood. Radon emanation coefficients of the samples ranged from about 5 to 30%, with the coal-bearing samples clearly demonstrating an emanating power higher than any of the other materials. ?? 1990.

  14. Uranium mine and mill tailings - Liabilities in the European Union

    SciTech Connect

    Hilden, Wolfgang; Murphy, Simon; Vrijen, Jan

    2007-07-01

    Available in abstract form only. Full text of publication follows: Uranium mining and milling has taken place on large scale in the Member States of the European Union (EU) for some 60 years. Although, compared to mining, milling activities are normally concentrated in fewer locations, this can still result in a relatively large number of disposal sites for the tailings, compared to other radioactive wastes. In addition these sites are also quite large, in terms of both volume and surface area. Coupled with the residual uranium in the tailings together with other radionuclides, heavy metals, chemicals etc this results in an environmental legacy continuing far into the future. Often during production no or little provision has been made for the closure, remediation and future supervision of such sites. In 1996 the European Commission funded an inventory of uranium mining and milling liabilities in nine Central and Eastern European Countries. Additionally, pilot projects were funded to carry out remediation activities at several sites. Almost ten years later the Commission has identified the need to address the situation of these large liabilities in all EU Member States and to assess the progress made in remediation of the sites, especially in view of the closure of almost all mining activities in Europe. The Commission study has identified the current tailings liabilities in Europe, their status, the future plans for these sites and the hazards that continue to be associated with them. It is clear that although considerable progress has been made in recent years, much work remains to be carried out in the areas of remediation, and ensuring the long-term safety of many of the identified objects. The paper presents the main findings of the study, as well as the challenges identified to ensure long-term safety of these wastes. (authors)

  15. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project environmental protection implementation plan

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-10-01

    The Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project Environmental Protection Implementation Plan (EPIP) has been prepared in accordance with the requirements of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Order 5400.1. The UMTRA EPIP is updated annually. This version covers the time period of 9 November 1994, through 8 November 1995. Its purpose is to provide management direction to ensure that the UMTRA Project is operated and managed in a manner that will protect, maintain, and where necessary, restore environmental quality, minimize potential threats to public health and the environment, and comply with environmental regulations and DOE policies.

  16. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project Environmental Protection Implementation Plan

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-10-01

    The Uranium Mill Tallings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project Environmental Protection Implementation Plan (EPIP) has been prepared in accordance with the requirements of the US Department of Energy (DOE) Order 5400.1 (Chapter 3, paragraph 2). The UMTRA EPIP covers the time period of November 9, 1992, through November 8, 1993. It will be updated annually. Its purpose is to provide management direction to ensure that the UMTRA Project is operated and managed in a manner that will protect, maintain, and where necessary, restore environmental quality, minimize potential threats to public health and the environment, and comply with environmental regulations and DOE policies.

  17. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project. 1995 Environmental Report

    SciTech Connect

    1996-06-01

    In accordance with U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Order 23 1. 1, Environment, Safety and Health Reporting, the DOE prepares an annual report to document the activities of the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project environmental monitoring program. This monitoring must comply with appropriate laws, regulations, and standards, and it must identify apparent and meaningful trends in monitoring results. The results of all monitoring activities must be communicated to the public. The UMTRA Project has prepared annual environmental reports to the public since 1989.

  18. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project 1993 Environmental Report

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-10-01

    This annual report documents the Uranium Mill Tailing Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project environmental monitoring and protection program. The UMTRA Project routinely monitors radiation, radioactive residual materials, and hazardous constituents at associated former uranium tailings processing sites and disposal sites. At the end of 1993, surface remedial action was complete at 10 of the 24 designated UMTRA Project processing sites. In 1993 the UMTRA Project office revised the UMTRA Project Environmental Protection Implementation Plan, as required by the US DOE. Because the UMTRA Project sites are in different stages of remedial action, the breadth of the UMTRA environmental protection program differs from site to site. In general, sites actively undergoing surface remedial action have the most comprehensive environmental programs for sampling media. At sites where surface remedial action is complete and at sites where remedial action has not yet begun, the environmental program consists primarily of surface water and ground water monitoring to support site characterization, baseline risk assessments, or disposal site performance assessments.

  19. The new nuclear west: Uranium milling as community on Colorado's western slope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tidwell, Abraham S. D.

    In mid-2007, Energy Fuels, a Toronto-based uranium mining and milling company, announced their intent to build Piñon Ridge, the first new conventional uranium mill in the United States in 30 years. The prospect of a return to uranium milling has mobilized community support to bring back an industry some see as both familiar and capable of supporting and growing their communities. Using transcripts generated during the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment's public meetings and hearings during 2010 and 2012, this study examines how proponents of the mill frame the socioeconomic advantages of bringing the industry back. Applying Kinsella's bounded constitutive model of communication, this study shows that the community and the uranium mill are bound in a "sorge-enframing" duality where the care generated by each binds the other to the recalcitrant nature of the uranium industry and preconceived notions of socioeconomic development, respectively.

  20. Liner evaluation for uranium mill tailings. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Buelt, J.L.

    1983-09-01

    The Liner Evaluation for Uranium Mill Tailings Program was conducted to evaluate the need for and performance of prospective lining materials for the long-term management of inactive uranium mill tailings piles. On the basis of program results, two materials have been identified: natural foundation soil amended with 10% sodium bentonite; catalytic airblown asphalt membrane. The study showed that, for most situations, calcareous soils typical of Western US sites adequately buffer tailings leachates and prevent groundwater contamination without additional liner materials or amendments. Although mathematical modeling of disposal sites is recommended on a site-specific basis, there appears to be no reason to expect significant infiltration through the cover for most Western sites. The major water source through the tailings would be groundwater movement at sites with shallow groundwater tables. Even so column leaching studies showed that contaminant source terms were reduced to near maximum contaminant levels (MCL's) for drinking water within one or two pore volumes; thus, a limited source term for groundwater contamination exists. At sites where significant groundwater movement or infiltration is expected and the tailings leachates are alkaline, however, the sodium bentonite or asphalt membrane may be necessary.

  1. Mortality among a cohort of uranium mill workers: an update

    PubMed Central

    Pinkerton, L; Bloom, T; Hein, M; Ward, E

    2004-01-01

    Aims: To evaluate the mortality experience of 1484 men employed in seven uranium mills in the Colorado Plateau for at least one year on or after 1 January 1940. Methods: Vital status was updated through 1998, and life table analyses were conducted. Results: Mortality from all causes and all cancers was less than expected based on US mortality rates. A statistically significant increase in non-malignant respiratory disease mortality and non-significant increases in mortality from lymphatic and haematopoietic malignancies other than leukaemia, lung cancer, and chronic renal disease were observed. The excess in lymphatic and haematopoietic cancer mortality was due to an increase in mortality from lymphosarcoma and reticulosarcoma and Hodgkin's disease. Within the category of non-malignant respiratory disease, mortality from emphysema and pneumoconioses and other respiratory disease was increased. Mortality from lung cancer and emphysema was higher among workers hired prior to 1955 when exposures to uranium, silica, and vanadium were presumably higher. Mortality from these causes of death did not increase with employment duration. Conclusions: Although the observed excesses were consistent with our a priori hypotheses, positive trends with employment duration were not observed. Limitations included the small cohort size and limited power to detect a moderately increased risk for some outcomes of interest, the inability to estimate individual exposures, and the lack of smoking data. Because of these limitations, firm conclusions about the relation of the observed excesses in mortality and mill exposures are not possible. PMID:14691274

  2. Radon attenuation handbook for uranium mill tailings cover design

    SciTech Connect

    Rogers, V.C.; Nielson, K.K.; Kalkwarf, D.R.

    1984-04-01

    This handbook has been prepared to facilitate the design of earthen covers to control radon emission from uranium mill tailings. Radon emissions from bare and covered uranium mill tailings can be estimated from equations based on diffusion theory. Basic equations are presented for calculating surface radon fluxes from covered tailings, or alternately, the cover thicknesses required to satisfy a given radon flux criterion. Also described is a computer code, RAECOM, for calculating cover thicknesses and surface fluxes. Methods are also described for measuring diffusion coefficients for radon, or for estimating them from empirical correlations. Since long-term soil moisture content is a critical parameter in determining the value of the diffusion coefficient, methods are given for estimating the long-term moisture contents of soils. The effects of cover defects or advection are also discussed and guidelines are given for determining if they are significant. For most practical cases, advection and cover defect effects on radon flux can be neglected. Several examples are given to demonstrate cover design calculations, and an extensive list of references is included. 63 references, 18 figures, 6 tables.

  3. Uranium mill tailings neutralization: contaminant complexation and tailings leaching studies

    SciTech Connect

    Opitz, B.E.; Dodson, M.E.; Serne, R.J.

    1985-05-01

    Laboratory experiments were performed to compare the effectiveness of limestone (CaCO/sub 3/) and hydrated lime (Ca(OH)/sub 2/) for improving waste water quality through the neutralization of acidic uranium mill tailings liquor. The experiments were designed to also assess the effects of three proposed mechanisms - carbonate complexation, elevated pH, and colloidal particle adsorption - on the solubility of toxic contaminants found in a typical uranium mill waste solution. Of special interest were the effects each of these possible mechanisms had on the solution concentrations of trace metals such as Cd, Co, Mo, Zn, and U after neutralization. Results indicated that the neutralization of acidic tailings to a pH of 7.3 using hydrated lime provided the highest overall waste water quality. Both the presence of a carbonate source or elevating solution pH beyond pH = 7.3 resulted in a lowering of previously achieved water quality, while adsorption of contaminants onto colloidal particles was not found to affect the solution concentration of any constituent investigated. 24 refs., 8 figs., 19 tabs.

  4. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project, Surface Project Management Plan. Revision 1

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-12-01

    Title I of the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act (UMTRCA) authorizes the US Department of Energy (DOE) to undertake remedial action at 24 designated inactive uranium processing sites and associated vicinity properties (VP) containing uranium mill tailings and related residual radioactive materials. The purpose of the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Surface Project is to minimize or eliminate radiation health hazards to the public and the environment at the 24 sites and related VPs. This document describes the management organization, system, and methods used to manage the design, construction, and other activities required to clean up the designated sites and associated VPs, in accordance with the UMTRCA.

  5. Systematic evaluation of satellite remote sensing for identifying uranium mines and mills.

    SciTech Connect

    Blair, Dianna Sue; Stork, Christopher Lyle; Smartt, Heidi Anne; Smith, Jody Lynn

    2006-01-01

    In this report, we systematically evaluate the ability of current-generation, satellite-based spectroscopic sensors to distinguish uranium mines and mills from other mineral mining and milling operations. We perform this systematic evaluation by (1) outlining the remote, spectroscopic signal generation process, (2) documenting the capabilities of current commercial satellite systems, (3) systematically comparing the uranium mining and milling process to other mineral mining and milling operations, and (4) identifying the most promising observables associated with uranium mining and milling that can be identified using satellite remote sensing. The Ranger uranium mine and mill in Australia serves as a case study where we apply and test the techniques developed in this systematic analysis. Based on literature research of mineral mining and milling practices, we develop a decision tree which utilizes the information contained in one or more observables to determine whether uranium is possibly being mined and/or milled at a given site. Promising observables associated with uranium mining and milling at the Ranger site included in the decision tree are uranium ore, sulfur, the uranium pregnant leach liquor, ammonia, and uranyl compounds and sulfate ion disposed of in the tailings pond. Based on the size, concentration, and spectral characteristics of these promising observables, we then determine whether these observables can be identified using current commercial satellite systems, namely Hyperion, ASTER, and Quickbird. We conclude that the only promising observables at Ranger that can be uniquely identified using a current commercial satellite system (notably Hyperion) are magnesium chlorite in the open pit mine and the sulfur stockpile. Based on the identified magnesium chlorite and sulfur observables, the decision tree narrows the possible mineral candidates at Ranger to uranium, copper, zinc, manganese, vanadium, the rare earths, and phosphorus, all of which are

  6. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project Environmental Protection Implementation Plan

    SciTech Connect

    Vollmer, A.T.

    1993-10-01

    The Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project Environmental Protection Implementation Plan (EPIP) has been prepared in accordance with the requirements of the US Department of Energy (DOE) Order 5400.1. The UMTRA EPIP covers the time period of November 9, 1993, through November 8, 1994. It will be updated annually. Its purpose is to provide management direction to ensure that the UMTRA Project is operated and managed in a manner that will protect, maintain, and where necessary, restore environmental quality, minimize potential threats to public health and the environment, and comply with environmental regulations and DOE policies. Contents of this report are: (1) general description of the UMTRA project environmental protection program; (2) notifications; (3) planning and reporting; (4) special programs; (5) environmental monitoring programs; (6) quality assurance and data verification; and (7) references.

  7. Ammonium Sulfate Evaporites Associated With Uranium Mill Tailings Disposal Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wendlandt, R. F.; Harrison, W. J.

    2006-12-01

    The waste products of uranium mill operations are complex and dependent on the ore mineralogy, milling process (e.g., low pH vs. high pH), and operational status of the mill among other things. The White Mesa Mill, Utah, was visited during both quiescent (July 2004) and operational phases (August 2005) to collect liquid and solid samples from the active evaporation and storage ponds environments (Cells 1 and 3). Cell 4, which was unused and being excavated at the times of both samplings, yielded solids accumulated through the history of that cell's use. Raffinate samples are concentrated Na-Mg-Al-Fe-SO4-NO3(-NH4) brines characterized by extreme enrichments in REE and transition elements. Ionic strengths, calculated using the Pitzer activity coefficient model varied from 25M (pH = 1 at 25°C) in Cell 1 and 12M (pH = 2.7) in Cell 3 during July 2004, to 5M (pH = 1.5) in Cell 1 and 1.2M (pH = 2.9) in Cell 3 during August 2005. At the first sampling, the dominant anion was sulfate in Cell 1 and nitrate in Cell 3. At the time of the second sampling, both cells were dominated by sulfate. During July 2004, there was significant evaporative drawdown in the ponds, resulting in 3 variably colored zones (~7m) of mineralogically complex evaporites at the cell margins. During August 2005, the operational nature of the mill and the addition of fresh water had produced high water levels in Cells 1 and 3. Evaporation crusts were recognized around the margins of the cells but they were <2m in extent. XRD analyses document the presence of boussingaultite, (NH4)2Mg(SO4)2.6H2O, which was actively precipitating from Cell 1 during 2004, tschermigite, (NH4)Al(SO4)2.12H2O, gypsum, and polymorphs of Na2SO4 including thenardite. ESEM imaging and EDS analyses of crusts reveal complex parageneses involving the above-mentioned phases and NH4-bearing metavoltine, K2Na6Fe^{+2}Fe6^{+3}(SO4)12O2.18H2O, among others. Ksp calculations and field relations are consistent with a precipitation sequence

  8. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project 1994 environmental report

    SciTech Connect

    1995-08-01

    This annual report documents the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project environmental monitoring and protection program. The UMTRA Project routinely monitors radiation, radioactive residual materials, and hazardous constituents at associated former uranium tailings processing sites and disposal sites. At the end of 1994, surface remedial action was complete at 14 of the 24 designated UMTRA Project processing sites: Canonsburg, Pennsylvania; Durango, Colorado; Grand Junction, Colorado; Green River Utah, Lakeview, Oregon; Lowman, Idaho; Mexican Hat, Utah; Riverton, Wyoming; Salt Lake City, Utah; Falls City, Texas; Shiprock, New Mexico; Spook, Wyoming, Tuba City, Arizona; and Monument Valley, Arizona. Surface remedial action was ongoing at 5 sites: Ambrosia Lake, New Mexico; Naturita, Colorado; Gunnison, Colorado; and Rifle, Colorado (2 sites). Remedial action has not begun at the 5 remaining UMTRA Project sites that are in the planning stage. Belfield and Bowman, North Dakota; Maybell, Colorado; and Slick Rock, Colorado (2 sites). The ground water compliance phase of the UMTRA Project started in 1991. Because the UMTRA Project sites are.` different stages of remedial action, the breadth of the UMTRA environmental protection program differs from site to site. In general, sites actively undergoing surface remedial action have the most comprehensive environmental programs for sampling media. At sites where surface remedial action is complete and at sites where remedial action has not yet begun, the environmental program consists primarily of surface water and ground water monitoring to support site characterization, baseline risk assessments, or disposal site performance assessments.

  9. Decontamination and decommissioning of the uranium mill and processing plant at Seelingstaedt, Germany

    SciTech Connect

    Barnekow, Ulf; Bauroth, Matthias; Paul, Michael

    2007-07-01

    In Eastern Germany uranium mining lasted from 1946 till 1990 including a production of in total 220,000 t of uranium. The Seelingstaedt Uranium Mill and Processing Plant, located in Thuringia, Germany, was one of two large uranium mills owned by Wismut. The mill was erected by 1960 and covered an area of 93 ha. From 1961 till 1991 a total of about 110 million t of different types of uranium ores were milled and processed at the Seelingstaedt mill. The mill produced ca. 110,000 t of uranium (in yellow cake). Demolition of the buildings and industrial facilities of the Seelingstaedt mill and processing plant site are nearly completed. The site is being decommissioned with respect to after-use aiming at afforestation and grasslands allowing for a stable plant succession. Decommissioning includes excavation and relocation of contaminated materials, reshaping of the site and construction of ditches for granting a stable surface runoff as well construction of access and maintenance roads. About 85% of the demolition and relocation works have been completed till to date. Last decommissioning works shall be completed by 2015. The present paper presents experiences made and progress achieved till to date. (authors)

  10. Accepting Mixed Waste as Alternate Feed Material for Processing and Disposal at a Licensed Uranium Mill

    SciTech Connect

    Frydenland, D. C.; Hochstein, R. F.; Thompson, A. J.

    2002-02-26

    Certain categories of mixed wastes that contain recoverable amounts of natural uranium can be processed for the recovery of valuable uranium, alone or together with other metals, at licensed uranium mills, and the resulting tailings permanently disposed of as 11e.(2) byproduct material in the mill's tailings impoundment, as an alternative to treatment and/or direct disposal at a mixed waste disposal facility. This paper discusses the regulatory background applicable to hazardous wastes, mixed wastes and uranium mills and, in particular, NRC's Alternate Feed Guidance under which alternate feed materials that contain certain types of mixed wastes may be processed and disposed of at uranium mills. The paper discusses the way in which the Alternate Feed Guidance has been interpreted in the past with respect to processing mixed wastes and the significance of recent changes in NRC's interpretation of the Alternate Feed Guidance that sets the stage for a broader range of mixed waste materials to be processed as alternate feed materials. The paper also reviews the le gal rationale and policy reasons why materials that would otherwise have to be treated and/or disposed of as mixed waste, at a mixed waste disposal facility, are exempt from RCRA when reprocessed as alternate feed material at a uranium mill and become subject to the sole jurisdiction of NRC, and some of the reasons why processing mixed wastes as alternate feed materials at uranium mills is preferable to direct disposal. Finally, the paper concludes with a discussion of the specific acceptance, characterization and certification requirements applicable to alternate feed materials and mixed wastes at International Uranium (USA) Corporation's White Mesa Mill, which has been the most active uranium mill in the processing of alternate feed materials under the Alternate Feed Guidance.

  11. Uptake of uranium by aquatic plants growing in fresh water ecosystem around uranium mill tailings pond at Jaduguda, India.

    PubMed

    Jha, V N; Tripathi, R M; Sethy, N K; Sahoo, S K

    2016-01-01

    Concentration of uranium was determined in aquatic plants and substrate (sediment or water) of fresh water ecosystem on and around uranium mill tailings pond at Jaduguda, India. Aquatic plant/substrate concentration ratios (CRs) of uranium were estimated for different sites on and around the uranium mill tailings disposal area. These sites include upstream and downstream side of surface water sources carrying the treated tailings effluent, a small pond inside tailings disposal area and residual water of this area. Three types of plant groups were investigated namely algae (filamentous and non-filamentous), other free floating & water submerged and sediment rooted plants. Wide variability in concentration ratio was observed for different groups of plants studied. The filamentous algae uranium concentration was significantly correlated with that of water (r=0.86, p<0.003). For sediment rooted plants significant correlation was found between uranium concentration in plant and the substrate (r=0.88, p<0.001). Both for other free floating species and sediment rooted plants, uranium concentration was significantly correlated with Mn, Fe, and Ni concentration of plants (p<0.01). Filamentous algae, Jussiaea and Pistia owing to their high bioproductivity, biomass, uranium accumulation and concentration ratio can be useful for prospecting phytoremediation of stream carrying treated or untreated uranium mill tailings effluent. PMID:26360459

  12. 76 FR 70170 - Proposed Alternative Soils Standards for the Uravan, Colorado Uranium Mill

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-11-10

    ... COMMISSION Proposed Alternative Soils Standards for the Uravan, Colorado Uranium Mill AGENCY: Nuclear... Waste Management Division (the Division) submitted a proposal for alternative standards for soil clean...) concurrence. Colorado's proposed alternative soil standards are to leave the remaining...

  13. Annual status report on the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Program

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-12-01

    This fourteenth annual status report for the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project Office summarizes activities of the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Surface (UMTRA-Surface) and Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Groundwater (UMTRA-Groundwater) Projects undertaken during fiscal year (FY) 1992 by the US Department of Energy (DOE) and other agencies. Project goals for FY 1993 are also presented. An annual report of this type was a statutory requirement through January 1, 1986, pursuant to the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act (UMTRCA) of 1978, Public Law (PL) 95-604. The DOE will continue to submit annual reports to DOE-Headquarters, the states, tribes, and local representatives through Project completion in order to inform the public of the yearly Project status. The purpose of the remedial action is to stabilize and control the tailings and other residual radioactive material (RRM) located on the inactive uranium processing sites in a safe and environmentally sound manner, and to minimize or eliminate potential health hazards. Commercial and residential properties near designated processing sites that are contaminated with material from the sites, herein referred to as ``vicinity properties (VP),`` are also eligible for remedial action. Included in the UMTRA Project are 24 inactive uranium processing sites and associated VPs located in 10 states, and the VPs associated with the Edgemont, South Dakota, uranium mill currently owned by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) (Figure A.1, Appendix A).

  14. Miscellaneous radioactive materials detected during uranium mill tailings surveys

    SciTech Connect

    Wilson, M.J.

    1993-10-01

    The Department of Energy`s (DOE) Office of Environmental Restoration and Waste Management directed the Oak Ridge National Laboratory Pollutant Assessments Group in the conduct of radiological surveys on properties in Monticello, Utah, associated with the Mendaciously millsite National Priority List site. During these surveys, various radioactive materials were detected that were unrelated to the Monticello millsite. The existence and descriptions of these materials were recorded in survey reports and are condensed in this report. The radioactive materials detected are either naturally occurring radioactive material, such as rock and mineral collections, uranium ore, and radioactive coal or manmade radioactive material consisting of tailings from other millsites, mining equipment, radium dials, mill building scraps, building materials, such as brick and cinderblock, and other miscellaneous sources. Awareness of the miscellaneous and naturally occurring material is essential to allow DOE to forecast the additional costs and schedule changes associated with remediation activities. Also, material that may pose a health hazard to the public should be revealed to other regulatory agencies for consideration.

  15. Moisture content analysis of covered uranium mill tailings

    SciTech Connect

    Mayer, D.W.; Beedlow, P.A.; Cadwell, L.L.

    1981-12-01

    The use of vegetation and rock covers to stabilize uranium mill tailings cover systems is being investigated by Pacific Northwest Laboratory. A modeling study of moisture movement through the tailings and cover layers was initiated to determine the effect of the stabilizing techniques. The cover system was simulated under climatic conditions occurring at Grand Junction, Colorado. The cover consisted of a layer of wet clay/gravel mix followed by a capillary barrier of washed rock and a surface layer of fill soil. Vegetation and rock were used to stabilize the surface layer. The simulation yielded moisture content and moisture storage values for the tailings and cover system along with information about moisture losses due to evaporation, transpiration, and drainage. The study demonstrates that different surface stabilization treatments lead to different degrees of moisture retention in the covered tailings pile. The evapotranspiration from vegetation can result in a relatively stable moisture content. Rock covers, however, may cause drainage to occur because they reduce evaporation and lead to a subsequent increase in moisture content. It is important to consider these effects when designing a surface stabilization treatment. Drainage may contribute to a groundwater pollution problem. A surface treatment that allows the cover system to dry out can increase the risk of atmospheric contamination through elevated radon emission rates.

  16. Safeguards on uranium ore concentrate? the impact of modern mining and milling process

    SciTech Connect

    Francis, Stephen

    2013-07-01

    Increased purity in uranium ore concentrate not only raises the question as to whether Safeguards should be applied to the entirety of uranium conversion facilities, but also as to whether some degree of coverage should be moved back to uranium ore concentrate production at uranium mining and milling facilities. This paper looks at uranium ore concentrate production across the globe and explores the extent to which increased purity is evident and the underlying reasons. Potential issues this increase in purity raises for IAEA's strategy on the Starting Point of Safeguards are also discussed.

  17. Remedial action plan and site design for stabilization of the inactive uranium mill tailings site at Tuba City, Arizona: Phase 2, Construction, Subcontract documents: Appendix E, final report. [Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1989-08-01

    This appendix discusses Phase II construction and subcontract documents uranium mill site near Tuba City, Arizona. It contains the bid schedule, special conditions, specifications, and subcontract drawings.

  18. The paradox of uranium development: A Polanyian analysis of social movements surrounding the Pinon Ridge Uranium Mill

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malin, Stephanie A.

    Renewal of nuclear energy development has been proposed as one viable solution for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and impacts of climate change. This discussion became concrete as the first uranium mill proposed since the end of the Cold War, the Pinon Ridge Uranium Mill, received state permits in January 2011 to process uranium in southwest Colorado's Paradox Valley. Though environmental contamination from previous uranium activity caused one local community to be bulldozed to the ground, local support for renewed uranium activity emerges among local residents in communities like Nucla, Naturita, and Bedrock, Colorado. Regionally, however, a coalition of organized, oppositionbased grassroots groups fights the decision to permit the mill. Combined, these events allow social scientists a natural laboratory through which to view social repercussions of nuclear energy development. In this dissertation, I use a Polanyian theoretical framework to analyze social, political-economic, and environmental contexts of social movements surrounding PR Mill. My overarching research problem is: How might Polanyian double movement theory be applied to and made empirically testable within the social and environmental context of uranium development? I intended this analysis to inform energy policy debates regarding renewable energy. In Chapter 1, I found various forms of social dislocation lead to two divergent social movement outcomes. Economic social dislocation led to strong mill support among most local residents, according to archival, in-depth interview, and survey data. On the other hand, residents in regional communities experienced two other types of social dislocation -- another kind of economic dislocation, related to concern over boom-bust economies, and environmental health dislocations related to uranium exposure, creating conditions for a regional movement in opposition to PR Mill. In Chapter 2, I focus on regulations and find that two divergent social movements

  19. Cost of radon-barrier systems for uranium mill tailings

    SciTech Connect

    Baker, E.G.; Hartley, J.N.

    1982-08-01

    This report deals specifically with the cost of three types of radon barrier systems, earthen covers, asphalt emulsion covers, and multilayer covers, which could meet standards proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency to stabilize uranium mill tailings located primarily in the western US. In addition, the report includes a sensitivity analysis of various factors which significantly effect the overall cost of the three systems. These analyses were based on a generic disposal site. Four different 3m thick earthen covers were tested and cost an average of $27/m/sup 2/. The least expensive earthen cover cost was about $21/m/sup 2/. The asphalt cover system (6 to 7 cm of asphalt topped with 0.6m of overburden) cost about $28/m/sup 2/. The four multilayer covers averaged $57/m/sup 2/, but materials handling problems encountered during the test inflated this cost above what was anticipated and significant cost reductions should be possible. The least expensive multilayer cover cost $43/m/sup 2/. Based on the results of the Grand Junction field test we estimated the cost of covering the tailings from three high priority sites, Durango, Shiprock, and Salt Lake City (Vitro). The cost of a 3m earthen cover ranged from $18 to 33/m/sup 2/ for the seven disposal sites (two or three at each location) studied. The cost of asphalt cover systems were $23 to 28/m/sup 2/ and the multilayer cover costs were between $31 to 36/m/sup 2/. The earthen cover costs are less than the Grand Junction field test cost primarily because cover material is available at or near most of the disposal sites selected. Earthen material was imported from 6 to 10 miles for the field test. Assuming more efficienct utilization of materials significantly reduced the cost of the multilayer covers.

  20. Geochemical modeling of uranium mill tailings: a case study

    SciTech Connect

    Peterson, S.R.; Felmy, A.R.; Serne, R.J.; Gee, G.W.

    1983-08-01

    Liner failure was not found to be a problem when various acidic tailings solutions leached through liner materials for periods up to 3 y. On the contrary, materials that contained over 30% clay showed a decrease in permeability with time in the laboratory columns. The decreases in permeability noted above are attributed to pore plugging resulting from the precipitation of minerals and solids. This precipitation takes place due to the increase in pH of the tailings solution brought about by the buffering capacity of the soil. Geochemical modeling predicts, and x-ray characterization confirms, that precipitation of solids from solution is occurring in the acidic tailings solution/liner interactions studied. X-ray diffraction identified gypsum and alunite group minerals, such as jarosite, as having precipitated after acidic tailings solutions reacted with clay liners. The geochemical modeling and experimental work described above were used to construct an equilibrium conceptual model consisting of minerals and solid phases. This model was developed to represent a soil column. A computer program was used as a tool to solve the system of mathematical equations imposed by the conceptual chemical model. The combined conceptual model and computer program were used to predict aqueous phase compositions of effluent solutions from permeability cells packed with geologic materials and percolated with uranium mill tailings solutions. An initial conclusion drawn from these studies is that the laboratory experiments and geochemical modeling predictions were capable of simulating field observations. The same mineralogical changes and contaminant reductions observed in the laboratory studies were found at a drained evaporation pond (Lucky Mc in Wyoming) with a 10-year history of acid attack. 24 references, 5 figures 5 tables.

  1. Radon emanation from backfilled mill tailings in underground uranium mine.

    PubMed

    Sahu, Patitapaban; Mishra, Devi Prasad; Panigrahi, Durga Charan; Jha, Vivekananda; Patnaik, R Lokeswara; Sethy, Narendra Kumar

    2014-04-01

    Coarser mill tailings used as backfill to stabilize the stoped out areas in underground uranium mines is a potential source of radon contamination. This paper presents the quantitative assessment of radon emanation from the backfilled tailings in Jaduguda mine, India using a cylindrical accumulator. Some of the important parameters such as (226)Ra activity concentration, bulk density, bulk porosity, moisture content and radon emanation factor of the tailings affecting radon emanation were determined in the laboratory. The study revealed that the radon emanation rate of the tailings varied in the range of 0.12-7.03 Bq m(-2) s(-1) with geometric mean of 1.01 Bq m(-2) s(-1) and geometric standard deviation of 3.39. An increase in radon emanation rate was noticed up to a moisture saturation of 0.09 in the tailings, after which the emanation rate gradually started declining with saturation due to low diffusion coefficient of radon in the saturated tailings. Radon emanation factor of the tailings varied in the range of 0.08-0.23 with the mean value of 0.21. The emanation factor of the tailings with moisture saturation level over 0.09 was found to be about three times higher than that of the absolutely dry tailings. The empirical relationship obtained between (222)Rn emanation rate and (226)Ra activity concentration of the tailings indicated a significant positive linear correlation (r = 0.95, p < 0.001). This relationship may be useful for quick prediction of radon emanation rate from the backfill material of similar nature. PMID:24412814

  2. Forage uptake of uranium series radionuclides in the vicinity of the anaconda uranium mill

    SciTech Connect

    Rayno, D.R.; Momeni, M.H.; Sabau, C.

    1980-01-01

    Radiochemical analysis was performed on samples of soil and eight species of common vegetation growing on the Anaconda uranium mill site, located in New Mexico. The concentrations of the long-lived radionuclides U-238, U-234, Th-230, Ra-226, and Pb-210 in these forage plants were determined. The sampling procedures and analytical laboratory methods used are described. The highest radionuclide concentration found in a forage species was 130 pCi of Ra-226 per gram dry weight for grass growing on the main tailings pile at Anaconda, where the surface soil activity of Ra-226 was 236 pCi/g. A comparison of shoots activity with that of roots and soil was used to determine a distribution index and uptake coefficient for each species. The distribution index, the ratio of root activity to shoot activity, ranged from 0.30 (Th-230) in galleta grass (Hilaria jamesii) to 38.0 (Ra-226) in Indian ricegrass (Oryzopsis hymenoides). In nearly all instances, the roots contained higher radionuclide concentrations. The uptake coefficient, the ratio of vegetation activity to soil activity, ranged from 0.69 (U-238) in Indian ricegrass roots to 0.01 (U-238) in four-wing saltbush (Atriplex canescans) shoots. The range of radionuclide concentrations in plants growing on the Anaconda mill site is compared to that in vegetation from a control site 20 km away.

  3. Programmatic Environmental Report for remedial actions at UMTRA (Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action) Project vicinity properties

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1985-03-01

    This Environmental Report (ER) examines the environmental consequences of implementing a remedial action that would remove radioactive uranium mill tailings and associated contaminated materials from 394 vicinity properties near 14 inactive uranium processing sites included in the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project pursuant to Public Law 95--604, the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act (UMTRCA) of 1978. Vicinity properties are those properties in the vicinity of the UMTRA Project inactive mill sites, either public or private, that are believed to be contaminated by residual radioactive material originating from one of the 14 inactive uranium processing sites, and which have been designated under Section 102(a)(1) of UMTRCA. The principal hazard associated with the contaminated properties results from the production of radon, a radioactive decay product of the radium contained in the tailings. Radon, a radioactive gas, can diffuse through the contaminated material and be released into the atmosphere where it and its radioactive decay products may be inhaled by humans. A second radiation exposure pathway results from the emission of gamma radiation from uranium decay products contained in the tailings. Gamma radiation emitted from contaminated material delivers an external exposure to the whole body. If the concentration of radon and its decay products is high enough and the exposure time long enough, or if the exposure to direct gamma radiation is long enough, cancers (i.e., excess health effects) may develop in persons living and working at the vicinity properties. 3 refs., 7 tabs.

  4. Scientific basis for risk assessment and management of uranium mill tailings

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1986-01-01

    A National Research Council study panel, convened by the Board on Radioactive Waste Management, has examined the scientific basis for risk assessment and management of uranium mill tailings and issued this final report containing a number of recommendations. Chapter 1 provides a brief introduction to the problem. Chapter 2 examines the processes of uranium extraction and the mechanisms by which radionuclides and toxic chemicals contained in the ore can enter the environment. Chapter 3 is devoted to a review of the evidence on health risks associated with radon and its decay products. Chapter 4 provides a consideration of conventional and possible new technical alternatives for tailings management. Chapter 5 explores a number of issues of comparative risk, provides a brief history of uranium mill tailings regulation, and concludes with a discussion of choices that must be made in mill tailing risk management. 211 refs., 30 figs., 27 tabs.

  5. Consolidation theory and its applicability to the dewatering and covering of uranium-mill tailings

    SciTech Connect

    Gates, T.E.

    1982-11-01

    This report is a review and evaluation of soil consolidation theories applicable for evaluating settlement during dewatering and subsequent covering of uranium-mill tailings. Such theories may be used to predict both consolidation and water flow related effects in uranium-mill tailings during drainage, following sluicing into burial pits. A consolidation theory to be useful must consider the effect of time-dependent loads, nonhomogeneous soil mass, nonlinear variation of soil properties with the stress-state parameters, large strain, and saturated and unsaturated flow. Constitutive relations linking the stress-deformation-state variables with void ratio should be adopted for predicting both consolidation and fluid-flow interaction in unsaturated uranium-mill tailings.

  6. 40 CFR 23.8 - Timing of Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 1 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Timing of Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978. 23.8 Section 23.8 Protection of Environment... Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978. Unless the...

  7. 40 CFR 23.8 - Timing of Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 1 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Timing of Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978. 23.8 Section 23.8 Protection of Environment... Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978. Unless the...

  8. 40 CFR 23.8 - Timing of Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 1 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Timing of Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978. 23.8 Section 23.8 Protection of Environment... Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978. Unless the...

  9. 40 CFR 23.8 - Timing of Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 1 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Timing of Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978. 23.8 Section 23.8 Protection of Environment... Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978. Unless the...

  10. 40 CFR 23.8 - Timing of Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 1 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Timing of Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978. 23.8 Section 23.8 Protection of Environment... Administrator's action under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978. Unless the...

  11. Mobilization of radionuclides from uranium mill tailings and related waste materials in anaerobic environments

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Landa, E.R.

    2003-01-01

    Specific extraction studies in our laboratory have shown that iron and manganese oxide- and alkaline earth sulfate minerals are important hosts of radium in uranium mill tailings. Iron- and sulfate-reducing bacteria may enhance the release of radium (and its analog barium) from uranium mill tailings, oil field pipe scale [a major technologically enhanced naturally occurring radioactive material (TENORM) waste], and jarosite (a common mineral in sulfuric acid processed-tailings). These research findings are reviewed and discussed in the context of nuclear waste forms (such as barium sulfate matrices), radioactive waste management practices, and geochemical environments in the Earth's surficial and shallow subsurface regions.

  12. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Surface Project: Project plan. Revision 1

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1993-08-11

    The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 (UMTRCA) [Public Law (PL) 95-604, 42 United States Code (USC) 7901], hereinafter referred to as the ``Act,`` authorizes the US Department of Energy (DOE) to stabilize and control surface tailings and ground water contamination. To fulfill this mission, the DOE has established two projects under the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project Office. The Ground Water Project was established in April 1991 as a major project and a separate project plan will be prepared for that portion of the mission. This project plan covers the UMTRA Surface Project, a major system acquisition (MSA).

  13. In Situ Biostimulation at a Former Uranium Mill Tailings Site: Multicomponent Biogeochemical Reactive Transport Modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yabusaki, S.; Fang, Y.; Long, P.

    2005-12-01

    In situ biostimulation at a Former Uranium Mill Tailings Site: Multicomponent Biogeochemical Reactive Transport Modeling Field experiments conducted at a former uranium mill tailings site in western Colorado are being used to investigate microbially mediated immobilization of uranium as a potential future remediation option for such sites. While the general principle of biostimulating microbial communities to reduce aqueous hexavalent uranium to immobile uraninite has been demonstrated in the laboratory and field, the ability to predictably engineer long lasting immobilization will require a more complete understanding of field-scale processes and properties. For this study, numerical simulation of the flow field, geochemical conditions, and micriobial communities is used to interpret field-scale biogeochemical reactive transport observed during experiments performed in 2002 to 2004. One key issue is identifying bioavailable Fe(III) oxide, which is the principal electron acceptor utilized by the acetate- oxidizing Geobacter sp. These organisms are responsible for uranium bioreduction that results in the removal of sufficient U(VI) to lower uranium groundwater concentrations to at or near applicable standards. The depletion of bioavailable Fe(III) leads to succession by sulfate reducers that are considerably less effective at uranium bioreduction. An important modeling consideration are the abiotic reactions (e.g., mineral precipitation and dissolution, aqueous and surface complexation) involving the Fe(II) and sulfide produced during biostimulation. These components, strongly associated with the solid phases, may play an important role in the evolving reactivity of the mineral surfaces that are likely to impact long-term uranium immobilization.

  14. Annual status report on the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Program

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1989-12-01

    This eleventh annual status report summarizes activities of the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project undertaken during Fiscal Year (FY) 1989 by the US Department of Energy (DOE) and other agencies. Project goals for FY 1990 are also presented. An annual report of this type was a statutory requirement through January 1, 1986, pursuant to the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act (UMTRCA) of 1978, Public Law (PL) 95--604. The DOE will continue to submit an annual report through project completion in order to inform the public of yearly project status. Title I of the UMTRCA authorizes the DOE, in cooperation with affected states and Indian tribes within whose boundaries designated uranium processing sites are located, to provide a program of assessment and remedial action at such sites. The purpose of the remedial action is to stabilize and control the tailings and other residual radioactive materials located on the inactive uranium processing sites in a safe and environmentally sound manner and to minimize or eliminate potential radiation health hazards. Commercial and residential properties in the vicinity of designated processing sites that are contaminated with material from the sites, herein referred to as vicinity properties,'' are also eligible for remedial action. Included in the UMTRA Project are 24 inactive uranium processing sites and associated vicinity properties located in 10 states, and the vicinity properties associated with Edgemont, South Dakota, an inactive uranium mill currently owned by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA).

  15. Remedial Action Plan and site design for stabilization of the inactive uranium mill tailings site at Falls City, Texas. [Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project

    SciTech Connect

    Chernoff, A.R. . Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project Office); Lacker, D.K. . Bureau of Radiation Control)

    1992-09-01

    The uranium processing site near Falls City, Texas, was one of 24 inactive uranium mill sites designated to be remediated by the US Department of Energy (DOE) under Title I of the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 (UMTRCA). The UMTRCA requires that the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) concur with the DOE's remedial action plan (RAP) and certify that the remedial action conducted at the site complies with the standards promulgated by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The RAP, which includes this summary remedial action selection report (RAS), serves a two-fold purpose. First, it describes the activities proposed by the DOE to accomplish long-term stabilization and control of the residual radioactive materials at the inactive uranium processing site near Falls City, Texas. Second, this document and the remainder of the RAP, upon concurrence and execution by the DOE, the State of Texas, and the NRC, becomes Appendix B of the Cooperative Agreement between the DOE and the State of Texas.

  16. Isolation of uranium mill tailings and their component radionuclides from the biosphere; some earth science perspectives

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Landa, Edward

    1980-01-01

    Uranium mining and milling is an expanding activity in the. Western United States. Although the milling process yields a uranium concentrate, the large volume of tailings remaining contains about 85 percent of the radioactivity originally associated with the ore. By virtue of the physical and chemical processing of the ore and the redistribution of the contained radionuclides at the Earth's surface, these tailings constitute a technologically enhanced source of natural radiation exposure. Sources of potential human radiation exposure from uranium mill tailings include the emanation of radon gas, the transport of particles by wind and water, and the transport of soluble radionuclides, seeping from disposal areas, by ground water. Due to the 77,000 year half-life of thorium-230, the parent of radium-226, the environmental effects associated with radionuclides contained in these railings must be conceived of within the framework of geologic processes operating over geologic time. The magnitude of erosion of cover materials and tailings and the extent of geochemical mobilization of the contained radionuclides to the atmosphere and hydrosphere should be considered in the evaluation of the potential, long-term consequences of all proposed uranium mill tailings management plans.

  17. 76 FR 59173 - Standard Format and Content of License Applications for Conventional Uranium Mills

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-09-23

    ... COMMISSION Standard Format and Content of License Applications for Conventional Uranium Mills AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission. ACTION: Draft regulatory guide; withdrawal. SUMMARY: On May 30, 2008 (73 FR 31152... availability of Draft Regulatory Guide (DG)-3024, ``Standard Format and Content of License Applications...

  18. Key programmatic steps and activities for implementing the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project. [UMTRA Project

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1985-07-01

    The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 (UMTRCA) was enacted based upon findings by Congress that uranium mill tailings located at active and inactive hazard to the public, and that protection of the public health, safety and welfare, and the regulations of interstate commerce, require that every reasonable effort be made to provide for the stabilization, disposal, and control in a safe and environmentally sound manner of such tailings in order to prevent or minimize radon diffusion into the environment and to prevent or minimize other environmental hazards from such tailings.'' A general understanding of the steps leading to elimination of the hazards associated with designated uranium mill tailings sites, and the parties involved in that effort, are presented in this document. A representative schedule is also presented in this document to show both program sequence and activity interdependence. Those activities that have the most potential to influence program duration, because of the significant amount of additional time that may be required, include identification and selection of a suitable site, field data collection delays due to weather, actual acquisition of the designated or alternate disposal site, construction delays due to weather, and site licensing. This document provides an understanding of the steps, the sequence, the parties involved, and a representative duration of activities leading to remedial action and cleanup at the designated inactive uranium mill tailings sites. 10 refs., 5 figs., 1 tab.

  19. 77 FR 35431 - Final Alternative Soils Standards for the Uravan, CO, Uranium Mill

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-06-13

    ... standards for a 30-day comment period (76 FR 70170; November 10, 2011). The public comment period and... COMMISSION Final Alternative Soils Standards for the Uravan, CO, Uranium Mill AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory... of Colorado's proposed alternative soils standards will achieve a level of stabilization...

  20. Project Charter (MSA-143). [Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1986-07-01

    Public Law 95-604, The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978'' as amended assigns to DOE, other Federal agencies, and involved States and Indian tribes, responsibilities for remedial actions at 22 inactive uranium mill tailings sites listed in the Act, and for any other sites designated by the Secretary prior to November 8, 1979. The objective of the UMTRA Project is to provide remedial action at the mill tailings sites and associated vicinity properties in order to stabilize and control the tailings in a safe and environmentally sound manner and to eliminate potential health hazards caused by residual levels of uranium decay products that exceed EPA standards. A total of 24 uranium mill tailings sites. This Project Charter delineates the respective responsibilities and authorities of (The Office of Nuclear Energy) (NE) and (Albuquerque Operations Office) (AL), and defines the terms and conditions for management of the UMTRA Project. Supplementary Project management documents which have been and are being developed pursuant to this Charter include a Project Plan (PP), a Project Management Plan (PMP) and other plans governing the accomplishment of the Project mission Evolution of the program will require updates of the Project Plan and Project Management Plan.

  1. Environmental control technology for mining and milling low-grade uranium resources

    SciTech Connect

    Weakley, S.A.; Blahnik, D.E.; Long, L.W.; Bloomster, C.H.

    1981-04-01

    This study examined the type and level of wastes that would be generated in the mining and milling of U/sub 3/O/sub 8/ from four potential domestic sources of uranium. The estimated costs of the technology to control these wastes to different degrees of stringency are presented.

  2. Sustainability of uranium mining and milling: toward quantifying resources and eco-efficiency.

    PubMed

    Mudd, Gavin M; Diesendorf, Mark

    2008-04-01

    The mining of uranium has long been a controversial public issue, and a renewed debate has emerged on the potential for nuclear power to help mitigate against climate change. The central thesis of pro-nuclear advocates is the lower carbon intensity of nuclear energy compared to fossil fuels, although there remains very little detailed analysis of the true carbon costs of nuclear energy. In this paper, we compile and analyze a range of data on uranium mining and milling, including uranium resources as well as sustainability metrics such as energy and water consumption and carbon emissions with respect to uranium production-arguably the first time for modern projects. The extent of economically recoverable uranium resources is clearly linked to exploration, technology, and economics but also inextricably to environmental costs such as energy/water/chemicals consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, and social issues. Overall, the data clearly show the sensitivity of sustainability assessments to the ore grade of the uranium deposit being mined and that significant gaps remain in complete sustainability reporting and accounting. This paper is a case study of the energy, water, and carbon costs of uranium mining and milling within the context of the nuclear energy chain. PMID:18505007

  3. Baseline risk assessment of groundwater contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Gunnison, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1993-12-01

    This Baseline Risk Assessment of Groundwater Contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site Near Gunnison, Colorado evaluates potential impacts to public health or the environment resulting from groundwater contamination at the former uranium mill processing site. The tailings and other contaminated material at this site are being placed in an off-site disposal cell by the US Department of Energy`s (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. Currently, the UMTRA Project is evaluating groundwater contamination. This is the second risk assessment of groundwater contamination at this site. The first risk assessment was performed primarily to evaluate existing domestic wells. This risk assessment evaluates the most contaminated monitor wells at the processing site. It will be used to assist in determining what remedial action is needed for contaminated groundwater at the site after the tailings are relocated. This risk assessment follows an approach outlined by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The first step is to evaluate groundwater data collected from monitor wells at the site. Evaluation of these data showed that the main contaminants in the groundwater are cadmium, cobalt, iron, manganese, sulfate, uranium, and some of the products of radioactive decay of uranium.

  4. Remediation of uranium mill tailings by an integrated biological and chemical process

    SciTech Connect

    Torma, A.E.

    1992-01-01

    Dilute calcium chloride brine solution was found to be effective in the solubilization of toxic heavy metals and long half-life radionuclides (Th-230, Ra-226 and Pb-210) from uranium ores and mill tailings. The recovery of heavy metals and radionuclides from uranium mill tailing effluents was studied with calcium alginate beads. The maximum cadmium and zinc uptakes by calcium alginate beads were determined to be 2.8 [times] 10[sup [minus]3] and 2.3 [times] 10[sup [minus]3] mol/dry weight of alginate. The kinetic values, V[sub m] and K, were calculated for uranium uptake by calcium alginate to be 96.2 mg/l/s and 0.125 g/l, respectively.

  5. Remediation of uranium mill tailings by an integrated biological and chemical process

    SciTech Connect

    Torma, A.E.

    1992-12-31

    Dilute calcium chloride brine solution was found to be effective in the solubilization of toxic heavy metals and long half-life radionuclides (Th-230, Ra-226 and Pb-210) from uranium ores and mill tailings. The recovery of heavy metals and radionuclides from uranium mill tailing effluents was studied with calcium alginate beads. The maximum cadmium and zinc uptakes by calcium alginate beads were determined to be 2.8 {times} 10{sup {minus}3} and 2.3 {times} 10{sup {minus}3} mol/dry weight of alginate. The kinetic values, V{sub m} and K, were calculated for uranium uptake by calcium alginate to be 96.2 mg/l/s and 0.125 g/l, respectively.

  6. Uranium mining and milling work force characteristics in the western US

    SciTech Connect

    Rapp, D.A.

    1980-12-01

    This report presents the results of a survey of the socioeconomic characteristics associated with 11 uranium mine and mill operations in 5 Western States. Comparisons are made with the socioeconomic characteristics of construction and operating crews for coal mines and utility plants in eight Western States. Worker productivity also is compared with that in similar types of coal and uranium mining operations. We found that there existed no significant differences between the socioeconomic characteristics of construction and operating crews and the secondary employment impacts associated with uranium mines and mills when compared with those associated with coal mines and utility plants requiring similar skills at comparable locations. In addition, our survey includes a comparison of several characteristics associated with the households of basic and nonbasic work forces and concludes that significant changes have occurred in the last 5 yr. Accordingly, we recommend additional monitoring and updating of data used in several economic forecasting models to avoid unwarranted delays in achieving national energy goals.

  7. Estimated dose to man from uranium milling via the terrestrial food-chain pathway

    SciTech Connect

    Rayno, D.R.

    1982-01-01

    One of the major pathways of radiological exposure to man from uranium milling operations is through the terrestrial food chain. Studies by various investigators have shown the extent of uptake and distribution of U-238, U-234, Th-230, Ra-226, Pb-210, and Po-210 in plants and animals. These long-lived natural radioisotopes, all nuclides of the uranium decay series, are found in concentrated amounts in uranium mill tailings. Data from these investigations are used to estimate the dose to man from consumption of beef and milk contaminated by the tailings. This dose estimate from this technologically enhanced source is compared with that from average normal dietary intake of these radionuclides from natural sources.

  8. Environmental assessment of remedial action at the Slick Rock uranium mill tailings sites, Slick Rock, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    1995-01-01

    The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978, hereafter referred to as the UMTRCA, authorized the US Department of Energy (DOE) to clean up two uranium mill tailings processing sites near Slick Rock, Colorado, in San Miguel County. The purpose of the cleanup is to reduce the potential health effects associated with the radioactive materials remaining on the processing sites and on vicinity properties (VPs) associated with the sites. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) promulgated standards for the UMTRCA that contained measures to control the contaminated materials and to protect the ground water from further degradation. The sites contain concrete foundations of mill buildings, tailings piles, and areas contaminated by windblown and waterborne radioactive tailings materials. The proposed action is to remediate the UC and NC sites by removing all contaminated materials within the designated site boundaries or otherwise associated with the sites, and relocating them to, and stabilizing them at, a location approximately 5 road mi (8 km) northeast of the processing sites on land administered by the US Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Remediation would be performed by the DOE`s Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project.

  9. Radionuclides in the terrestrial ecosystem near a Canadian uranium mill -- Part 2: Small mammal food chains and bioavailability

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, P.A.

    2000-06-01

    Food chain transfer through the soil-vegetation-small mammal food chain was measured by concentration ratios (CRs) for uranium, {sup 226}Ra, {sup 210}Pb, and {sup 210}Po at three sites near the Key Lake uranium mill in northern Saskatchewan. Plant/soil CRs, animal carcass/GI tract CRs, and animal/soil CRs were depressed at sites impacted by mill and tailings dusts relative to a nearby control site. Thus, radionuclides associated with large particulates in tailings and/or ore dusts may be less bioavailable to terrestrial plants and animals than natural sources of radioactive dust. These results show that reliance on default food chain transfer parameters, obtained from uncontaminated terrestrial ecosystems, may overpredict impacts at uranium mine and mill sites. Given the omnivorous diet of small mammals and birds, animal/soil CRs are recommended as the most cost-effective and robust means of predicting animal concentrations from environmental monitoring data at uranium mill facilities.

  10. Asphalt emulsion sealing of uranium mill tailings. 1980 annual report

    SciTech Connect

    Hartley, J.N.; Koehmstedt, P.L; Esterl, D.J.; Freeman, H.D.; Buelt, J.L.; Nelson, D.A.; Elmore, M.R.

    1981-05-01

    Studies of asphalt emulsion sealants conducted by the Pacific Northwest Laboratory have demonstrated that the sealants are effective in containing radon and other potentially hazardous material within uranium tailings. The laboratory and field studies have further demonstrated that radon exhalation from uranium tailings piles can be reduced by greater than 99% to near background levels. Field tests at the tailings pile in Grand Junction, Colorado, confirmed that an 8-cm admix seal containing 22 wt% asphalt could be effectively applied with a cold-mix paver. Other techniques were successfully tested, including a soil stabilizer and a hot, rubberized asphalt seal that was applied with a distributor truck. After the seals were applied and compacted, overburden was applied over the seal to protect the seal from ultraviolet degradation.

  11. From rum jungle to Wismut-reducing the environmental impact of uranium mining and milling

    SciTech Connect

    Zuk, W.M.; Jeffree, R.A.; Levins, D.M.

    1994-12-31

    Australia has a long history of uranium mining. In the early days, little attention was given to environmental matters and considerable pollution occurred. Ansto has been involved in rehabilitation of a number of the early uranium mining sites, from Rum Jungle in Australia`s Northern Territory to Wismut in Germany, and is working with current producers to minimise the environmental impact of their operations. Ansto`s expertise is extensive and includes, inter alia, amelioration of acid mine drainage, radon measurement and control, treatment of mill wastes, management of tailings, monitoring of seepage plumes, mathematical modelling of pollutant transport and biological impacts in a tropical environment.

  12. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Green River, Utah

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-09-01

    This document evaluates potential impacts to public health and the environment resulting from ground water contamination at the former uranium mill processing site. The tailings and other contaminated material at this site were placed in a disposal cell on the site in 1989 by the US DOE`s Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. Currently, UMTRA Project is evaluating ground water contamination in this risk assessment.

  13. Finding of No Significant Impact, proposed remediation of the Maybell Uranium Mill Processing Site, Maybell, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1995-12-31

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has prepared an environmental assessment (EA) (DOE/EA-0347) on the proposed surface remediation of the Maybell uranium mill processing site in Moffat County, Colorado. The mill site contains radioactively contaminated materials from processing uranium ore that would be stabilized in place at the existing tailings pile location. Based on the analysis in the EA, DOE has determined that the proposed action does not constitute a major federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment within the meaning of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, Public Law 91-190 (42 U.S.C. {section}4321 et seq.), as amended. Therefore, preparation of an environmental impact statement is not required and DOE is issuing this Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI).

  14. Release of 226Ra from uranium mill tailings by microbial Fe(III) reduction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Landa, E.R.; Phillips, E.J.P.; Lovley, D.R.

    1991-01-01

    Uranium mill tailings were anaerobically incubated in the presence of H2 with Alteromonas putrefaciens, a bacterium known to couple the oxidation of H2 and organic compounds to the reduction of Fe(III) oxides. There was a direct correlation between the extent of Fe(III) reduction and the accumulation of dissolved 226Ra. In sterile tailings in which Fe(III) was not reduced, there was negligible leaching of 226Ra. The behavior of Ba was similar to that of Ra in inoculated and sterile systems. These results demonstrate that under anaerobic conditions, microbial reduction of Fe(III) may result in the release of dissolved 226Ra from uranium mill tailings. ?? 1991.

  15. Review of Design Approaches Applicable to Dewatering Uranium Mill Tailings Disposal Pits

    SciTech Connect

    Gutknecht, P. J.; Gates, T. E.

    1982-03-01

    This report is a review of design approaches in the literature that may be applicable to uranium mill tailings drainage. Tailings dewatering is required in the deep mined-out pits used for wet tailings disposal. Agricultural drainage theory is reviewed because it is seen as the most applicable technology. It is concluded that the standard drain-pipe envelope design criteria should be easily adapted. The differences in dewatering objectives and physical characteristics between agricultural and tailings drainage systems prevent direct technology transfer with respect to drain spacing calculations. Recommendations for further research are based on the drainage features unique to uranium mill tailings. It is recommended that transient solutions be applied to describe liquid movement through saturated and partially saturated tailings. Modeling should be used to evaluate the benefits of drainage design approaches after careful consideration of potential construction problems.

  16. Asphalt emulsion radon barrier systems for uranium mill tailings: an overview of the technology

    SciTech Connect

    Baker, E.G.; Hartley, J.N.; Freeman, H.D.; Gates, T.E.; Nelson, D.A.; Dunning, R.L.

    1984-03-01

    Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL), under contract to the US Department of Energy (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project (UMTRAP) office, has developed an asphalt emulsion cover system to reduce the release of radon from uranium mill tailings. The system has been field tested at Grand Junction, Colorado. Results from laboratory and field tests indicate that this system is effective in reducing radon release to near-background levels (<2.5 pCi m/sup -2/s/sup -1/) and has the properties required for long-term effectiveness and stability. Engineering specifications have been developed, and analysis indicates that asphalt emulsion covers are cost-competitive with other cover systems. This report summarizes the technology for asphalt emulsion radon barrier systems. 59 references, 45 figures, 36 tables.

  17. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Riverton, Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-09-01

    This Risk Assessment evaluated potential impacts to public health or the environment caused by ground water contamination at the former uranium mill processing site. In the first phase of the U.S. Department of Energy`s Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project, the tailing and other contaminated material at this site were placed in a disposal cell near the Gas Hills Plant in 1990. The second phase of the UMTRA Project is to evaluate ground water contamination. This risk assessment is the first site-specific document to evaluate potential health and environmental risks for the Riverton site under the Ground Water Project; it will help determine whether remedial actions are needed for contaminated ground water at the site.

  18. Revegetation and rock cover for stabilization of inactive uranium mill tailings disposal sites. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Beedlow, P.A.

    1984-05-01

    Guidelines for using vegetation and rock to protect inactive uranium mill tailings from erosion were developed by Pacific Northwest Laboratory as part of the Department of Energy's Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project (UMTRAP) Technology Development program. Information on soils, climate, and vegetation were collected for 20 inactive tailings sites in the western United States. Sites were grouped according to similarities in climate and vegetation. Soil loss for those sites was characterized using the Universal Soil Loss Equation. Test plots were used to evaluate (1) the interaction between vegetation and sealant barrier systems and (2) the effects of surface rock on soil water and vegetation. Lysimeter and simulation studies were used to direct and support field experiments. 49 references, 17 figures, 16 tables.

  19. Environmental assessment of ground-water compliance activities at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site, Spook, Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    1997-02-01

    This report assesses the environmental impacts of the Uranium Mill Tailings Site at Spook, Wyoming on ground water. DOE previously characterized the site and monitoring data were collected during the surface remediation. The ground water compliance strategy is to perform no further remediation at the site since the ground water in the aquifer is neither a current nor potential source of drinking water. Under the no-action alternative, certain regulatory requirements would not be met.

  20. Scoping session of the programmatic environmental impact statement for the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project

    SciTech Connect

    1992-12-31

    This document is about the scoping session which was held at the Community Center in Falls City, Texas. The purpose was to obtain public comment on the Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement for the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project (UMTRA), specifically on the ground water project. Presentations made by the manager for the entire UMTRA program, manager of the site and ground water program, comments made by two residents of Fall City are included in this document.

  1. Uranium Mill Tailings remedial action project waste minimization and pollution prevention awareness program plan

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-07-01

    The purpose of this plan is to establish a waste minimization and pollution prevention awareness (WM/PPA) program for the U.S. Department of Energy`s (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. The program satisfies DOE requirements mandated by DOE Order 5400.1. This plan establishes planning objectives and strategies for conserving resources and reducing the quantity and toxicity of wastes and other environmental releases.

  2. Technical framework for groundwater restoration. [Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-04-01

    This document provides the technical framework for groundwater restoration under Phase II of the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. A preliminary management plan for Phase II has been set forth in a companion document titled Preplanning Guidance Document for Groundwater Restoration''. General principles of site characterization for groundwater restoration, restoration methods, and treatment are discussed in this document to provide an overview of standard technical approaches to groundwater restoration.

  3. Life Cycle Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Uranium Mining and Milling in Canada.

    PubMed

    Parker, David J; McNaughton, Cameron S; Sparks, Gordon A

    2016-09-01

    Life cycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from the production of nuclear power (in g CO2e/kWh) are uncertain due partly to a paucity of data on emissions from individual phases of the nuclear fuel cycle. Here, we present the first comprehensive life cycle assessment of GHG emissions produced from the mining and milling of uranium in Canada. The study includes data from 2006-2013 for two uranium mine-mill operations in northern Saskatchewan (SK) and data from 1995-2010 for a third SK mine-mill operation. The mine-mill operations were determined to have GHG emissions intensities of 81, 64, and 34 kg CO2e/kg U3O8 at average ore grades of 0.74%, 1.54%, and 4.53% U3O8, respectively. The production-weighted average GHG emission intensity is 42 kg CO2e/kg U3O8 at an average ore grade of 3.81% U3O8. The production-weighted average GHG emission intensity drops to 24 kg CO2e/kg U3O8 when the local hydroelectric GHG emission factor (7.2 g CO2e/kWh) is substituted for the SK grid-average electricity GHG emission factor (768 g CO2e/kWh). This results in Canadian uranium mining-milling contributing only 1.1 g CO2e/kWh to total life cycle GHG emissions from the nuclear fuel cycle (0.7 g CO2e/kWh using the local hydroelectric emission factor). PMID:27471915

  4. Assessment of the radiological impact of the inactive uranium-mill tailings at Mexican Hat, Utah

    SciTech Connect

    Haywood, F.F.; Goldsmith, W.A.; Ellis, B.S.; Hubbard, H.M. Jr.; Fox, W.F.; Shinpaugh, W.H.

    1980-03-01

    High surface soil concentrations of /sup 226/Ra and high above-ground measurements of gamma-ray intensity in the vicinity of the inactive uranium-mill tailings at Mexican Hat show both wind and water erosion of the tailings. The former mill area, occupied by a trade school at the time of this survey, shows a comparatively high level of contamination, probably from unprocessed ore on the surface of the ore storage area near the location of the former mill buildings. However, the estimated health effect of exposure to gamma rays during a 2000-hr work year in the area represents an increase of 0.1% in the risk of death from cancer. Exposure of less than 600 persons within 1.6 km of the tailings to radon daughters results in an estimated 0.2%/year increase in risk of lung cancer.

  5. Radiological survey of the inactive uranium-mill tailings at Rifle, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    Haywood, F.F.; Jacobs, D.J.; Ellis, B.S.; Hubbard, H.M. Jr.; Shinpaugh, W.H.

    1980-06-01

    Results of radiological surveys of two inactive uranium-mill sites near Rifle, Colorado, in May 1976 are presented. These sites are referred to as Old Rifle and New Rifle. The calculated /sup 226/Ra inventory of the latter site is much higher than at the older mill location. Data on above-ground measurements of gamma exposure rates, surface and near-surface concentration of /sup 226/Ra in soil and sediment samples, concentration of /sup 226/Ra in water, calculated subsurface distribution of /sup 226/Ra, and particulate radionuclide concentrations in air samples are given. The data serve to define the extent of contamination in the vicinity of the mill sites and their immediate surrounding areas with tailings particles. Results of these measurements were utilized as technical input for an engineering assessment of these two sites.

  6. [Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project Office Quality Assurance Program Plan

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-06-01

    The Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project was established to accomplish remedial actions at inactive uranium mill tailings sites in accordance with Public Law 95-604, the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 (UMTRCA). The UMTRA Project's mission is to stabilize and control the residual radioactive materials at designated sites in a safe and environmentally sound manner so as to minimize or eliminate radiation health hazards to the public. The US Department of Energy (DOE) UMTRA Project Office (UMTRA PO) directs the overall project. Since these efforts may involve possible risks to public health and safety, a quality assurance (QA) program that conforms to the applicable criteria (set forth in the reference documents) has been established to control the quality of the work. This document, the Quality Assurance Program Plan (QAPP), brings into one document the essential criteria to be applied on a selective basis, depending upon the nature of the activity being conducted, and describes how those criteria shall be applied to the UMTRA Project. The UMTRA PO shall require each Project contractor to prepare and submit for approval a more detailed QAPP that is based on the applicable criteria of this QAPP and the referenced documents. All QAPPs on the UMTRA Project shall fit within the framework of this plan.

  7. Paleoclimatic data applications: Long-term performance of uranium mill tailings repositories

    SciTech Connect

    Waugh, W.J.; Petersen, K.L.

    1995-09-01

    Abandoned uranium mill tailings sites in the Four Corners region are a lasting legacy of the Cold War. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is designing landfill repositories that will isolate hazardous constituents of tailings from biological intrusion, erosion, and the underlying aquifer for up to 1,000 years. With evidence of relatively rapid past climate change, and model predictions of global climatic variation exceeding the historical record, DOE recognizes a need to incorporate possible ranges of future climatic and ecological change in the repository design process. In the Four Corners region, the center of uranium mining and milling activities in the United States, proxy paleoclimatic records may be useful not only as a window on the past, but also as analogs of possible local responses to future global change. We reconstructed past climate change using available proxy data from tree rings, packrat middens, lake sediment pollen, and archaeological records. Interpretation of proxy paleoclimatic records was based on present-day relationships between plant distribution, precipitation, and temperature along a generalized elevational gradient for the region. For the Monticello, Utah, uranium mill tailings site, this first approximation yielded mean annual temperature and precipitation ranges of 2 to 10{degrees} C, and 38 to 80 cm, respectively, corresponding to late glacial and Altithermal periods. These data are considered to be reasonable ranges of future climatic conditions that can be input to evaluations of groundwater recharge, radon-gas escape, erosion, frost penetration, and biointrusion in engineered earthen barriers designed to isolate tailings.

  8. [Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project Office Quality Assurance Program Plan]. Revision 4

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-06-01

    The Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project was established to accomplish remedial actions at inactive uranium mill tailings sites in accordance with Public Law 95-604, the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 (UMTRCA). The UMTRA Project`s mission is to stabilize and control the residual radioactive materials at designated sites in a safe and environmentally sound manner so as to minimize or eliminate radiation health hazards to the public. The US Department of Energy (DOE) UMTRA Project Office (UMTRA PO) directs the overall project. Since these efforts may involve possible risks to public health and safety, a quality assurance (QA) program that conforms to the applicable criteria (set forth in the reference documents) has been established to control the quality of the work. This document, the Quality Assurance Program Plan (QAPP), brings into one document the essential criteria to be applied on a selective basis, depending upon the nature of the activity being conducted, and describes how those criteria shall be applied to the UMTRA Project. The UMTRA PO shall require each Project contractor to prepare and submit for approval a more detailed QAPP that is based on the applicable criteria of this QAPP and the referenced documents. All QAPPs on the UMTRA Project shall fit within the framework of this plan.

  9. Investigation of contamination of earthen covers on inactive uranium mill tailings

    SciTech Connect

    Markos, G.; Bush, K.J.

    1983-01-01

    The upward migration of contaminants into earthen covers on uranium mill tailings was evaluated from chemical and isotopic analysis of samples from 5--10 cm intervals through the cover and into the tailings at three locations on the Riverton pile. The Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project elected to determine the significance of migration of salts and contaminants into earthen covers emplaced on tailings by funding this investigation of the migration which has occurred through an earthen cover since the time of emplacement on an inactive uranium mill tailings pile. The Riverton tailings pile, covered with 20 to 40 cm of local sandy soil, was chosen for the study. The objectives of the study were to: determine vertical distributions of concentrations of salts, trace metals, and radionuclides through the cover and into the tailings; determine the concentrations of salts and contaminants in the cover from chemical migration; relate the migration of salts to the contaminants; model the mechanisms responsible for promoting and retarding migration; and evaluate the chemical and physical properties of the cover influencing migration. 20 refs., 35 figs., 10 tabs.

  10. Environmental factors affecting long-term stabilization of radon suppression covers for uranium mill tailings

    SciTech Connect

    Young, J.K.; Long, L.W.; Reis, J.W.

    1982-04-01

    Pacific Northwest Laboratory is investigating the use of a rock armoring blanket (riprap) to mitigate wind and water erosion of an earthen radon suppression cover applied to uranium mill tailings. To help determine design stresses for the tailings piles, environmental parameters are characterized for the five active uranium-producing regions on a site-specific basis. Only conventional uranium mills that are currently operating or that are scheduled to open in the mid 1980s are considered. Available data indicate that flooding has the most potential for disrupting a tailings pile. The arid regions of the Wyoming Basins and the Colorado Plateau are subject to brief storms of high intensity. The Texas Gulf Coast has the highest potential for extreme precipitation from hurricane-related storms. Wind data indicate average wind speeds from 3 to 6 m/sec for the sites, but extremes of 40 m/sec can be expected. Tornado risks range from low to moderate. The Colorado Plateau has the highest seismic potential, with maximum acceleration caused by earthquakes ranging from 0.2 to 0.4 g. Any direct effect from volcanic eruption is negligible, as all mills are located 90 km or more from an igneous or hydrothermal system.

  11. A Field and Modeling Study of Windblown Particles from a Uranium Mill Tailings Pile

    SciTech Connect

    Schwendiman, L. C.; Sehmel, G. A.; Horst, T. W.; Thomas, C. W.; Perkins, R. W.

    1980-06-01

    An extensive field study whose primary objective was to obtain knowledge and understanding of the nature and quantity of windblown particles from uranium mill tailings piles was conducted in the Ambrosia Lake District of New Mexico. The following major field tasks were undertaken: determination of physical, chemical, and radioactivity characteristics of mill tailings particles; an investigation of the nature and quantity of tailings particles in soil in the vicinity of tailings piles; and the determination of the nature and flux of particles being transported by wind as a function of wind speed and height. Results of the field study are presented. Particle size distributions and associated radioactivity were measured. Radioactivity relationships showed uranium daughters in mill tailings to be in essential radioactive equilibrium for the carbonate leach process but thorium-230 tends to be leached into the slurry water for the acid process mill tailings. One objective of the study was to relate windblown particle concentrations, fluxes, and particle sizes to wind speed. Hundreds of samples were taken and analyses were performed, but relationships between wind speed, airborne particle sizes and concentrations were found to be vague and inconclusive. A resuspension, deposition, and transport model was developed and applied using site meteorology. Ground deposition patterns predicted were similar to those found.

  12. Radon diffusion in candidate soils for covering uranium mill tailings

    SciTech Connect

    Silker, W.B.; Kalkwarf, D.R.

    1983-04-01

    Diffusion coefficients were measured for radon in 34 soils that had been identified by mill personnel as candidate covers for their tailings piles in order to reduce radon emission. These coefficients referred to diffusion in the total pore space of the soils. They were measured in the laboratory by a steady-state method using soil columns compacted to greater than 80% of their Proctor maximum packing densities but with moisture contents generally less than would be expected at a tailings site. An empirical equation was used to extrapolate measured coefficients to value expected at soil-moisture contents representative of tailings sites in the western United States. Extrapolated values for silty sands and clayey sands ranged from 0.004 to 0.06 cm/sup 2//s. Values for inorganic silts and clays ranged from 0.001 to 0.02 cm/sup 2//s.

  13. Radionuclides in the terrestrial ecosystem near a Canadian uranium mill -- Part 3: Atmospheric deposition rates (pilot test)

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, P.A.

    2000-06-01

    Atmospheric deposition rates of uranium series radionuclides were directly measured at three sites near the operating Key Lake uranium mill in northern Saskatchewan. Sites impacted by windblown tailings and mill dusts had elevated rates of uranium deposition near the mill and elevated {sup 226}Ra deposition near the tailings compared to a control site. Rainwater collectors, dust jars, and passive vinyl collectors previously used at the Ranger Mine in Australia were pilot-tested. Adhesive vinyl surfaces (1 m{sup 2}) were oriented horizontally, vertically, and facing the ground as a means of measuring gravitational settling, wind impaction, and soil resuspension, respectively. Although the adhesive glue on the vinyls proved difficult to digest, relative differences in deposition mode were found among radionuclides and among sites. Dry deposition was a more important transport mechanism for uranium, {sup 226}Ra, and {sup 210}Pb than rainfall, while more {sup 210}Po was deposited with rainfall.

  14. Engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings, Shiprock site, Shiprock, New Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1981-07-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah Inc. has reevaluated the Shiprock site in order to revise the March 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings at Shiprock, New Mexico. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 1.5 million dry tons of tailings at the Shiprock site constitutes the most significant environental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors. The eight alternative actions presented in this engineering assessment range from millsite decontamination with the addition of 3 m of stabilization cover material (Option I), to removal of the tailings to remote disposal sites and decontamination of the tailings site (Options II through VIII). Cost estimates for the eight options range from about $13,400,000 for stabilization in place to about $37,900,000 for disposal at a distance of about 16 miles. Three principal alternatives for the reprocessing of the Shiprock tailings were examined: (a) heap leaching; (b) treatment at an existing mill; and (c) reprocessing at a new conventional mill constructed for tailings reprocessing. The cost of the uranium recovered would be about $230/lb by heap leach and $250/lb by conventional plant processes. The spot market price for uranium was $25/lb early in 1981. Therefore, reprocessing the tailings for uranium recovery is not economically attractive.

  15. Engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings: Mexican Hat site, Mexican Hat, Utah. Summary

    SciTech Connect

    1981-09-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah Inc. has reevaluated the Mexican Hat site in order to revise the March 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings at Mexican Hat, Utah. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 2.2 million tons of tailings at the Mexican Hat site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors. The four alternative actions presented in this engineering assessment range from millsite decontamination with the addition of 3 m of stabilization cover material to removal of the tailings to remote disposal sites and decontamination of the tailings site. Cost estimates for the four options range from about $15,200,000 for stabilization in place, to about $45,500,000 for disposal at a distance of about 16 mi. Three principal alternatives for the reprocessing of the Mexican Hat tailings were examined: (a) heap leaching; treatment at an existing mill; and reprocessing at a new conventional mill constructed for tailings reprocessing. The cost of the uranium recovered would be about $115/lb of U/sub 3/O/sub 8/ whether by heap leach or conventional plant processes. The spot market price for uranium was $25/lb early in 1981. Reprocessing the Mexican Hat tailings for uranium recovery is not economically attractive under present conditions.

  16. Summary of the engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings: Monument Valley site, Monument Valley, Arizona

    SciTech Connect

    1981-10-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah Inc. has reevaluated the Monument Valley site in order to revise the March 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings at Monument Valley, Arizona. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 1.1 million tons of tailings at the Monument Valley site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors. The four alternative actions presented in this engineering assessment range from millsite decontamination with the addition of 3 m of stabilization cover material to removal of the tailings to remote disposal sites and decontamination of the tailings site. Cost estimates for the four options range from about $6,600,000 for stabilization in-place, to about $15,900,000 for disposal at a distance of about 15 mi. Three principal alternatives for reprocessing the Monument Valley tailings were examined: heap leaching, treatment at an existing mill; and reprocessing at a new conventional mill constructed for tailings reprocessing. The cost of the uranium recovered would be more than $500/lb of U/sub 3/O/sub 8/ by heap leach or conventional plant processes. The spot market price for uranium was $25/lb early in 1981. Therefore, reprocessing the tailings for uranium recovery is economically unattractive.

  17. Engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings: Slick Rock sites, Slick Rock, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    1981-09-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah, Inc., has reevaluated the Slick Rock sites in order to revise the October 1977 engineering radioactive uranium mill tailings at Slick Rock, Colorado. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 387,000 tons of tailings at the Slick Rock sites constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors. The five alternative actions presented in this engineering assessment include millsite decontamination with the addition of 3 m of stabilization cover material, consolidation of the piles, and removal of the tailings to remote disposal sites and decontamination of the tailings sites. Cost estimates for the five options range from about $6,800,000 for stabilization in-place, to about $11,000,000 for disposal at a distance of about 6.5 mi. Three principal alternatives for the reprocessing of the Slick Rock tailings were examined: heap leaching; treatment at an existing mill; and reprocessing at a new conventional mill constructed for tailings reprocessing. The cost of the uranium recovered would be over $800/lb of U/sub 3/O/sub 8/ whether by conventional or heap leach plant processes. The spot market price for uranium was $25/lb early in 1981. Therefore, reprocessing the tailings for uranium recovery is not economically attractive at present, nor for the foreseeable future.

  18. Engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings: Maybell Site, Maybell, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    1981-09-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah Inc. has reevaluated the Maybell site in order to revise the October 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings at Maybell, Colorado. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 2.6 million dry tons of tailings at the Maybell site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors. The two alternative actions presented in this engineering assessment range from millsite decontamination with the addition of 3 m of stabilization cover material (Option I), to disposal of the tailings in a nearby open pit mine and decontamination of the tailings site (Option II). Cost estimates for the two options are about $11,700,000 for stabilization in-place and about $22,700,000 for disposal within a distance of 2 mi. Three principal alternatives for the reprocessing of the Maybell tailings were examined: (a) heap leaching; (b) treatment at an existing mill; and (c) reprocessing at a new conventional mill constructed for tailings reprocessing. The cost of the uranium recovered would be about $125 and $165/lb of U/sub 3/O/sub 8/ by heap leach and conventional plant processes, respectively. The spot market price for uranium was $25/lb early in 1981. Therefore, reprocessing the tailings for uranium recovery is not economically attractive at present.

  19. Engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings: Mexican Hat Site, Mexican Hat, Utah

    SciTech Connect

    1981-09-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah Inc. has reevaluated the Mexican Hat site in order to revise the March 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings at Mexican Hat, Utah. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 2.2 million tons of tailings at the Mexican Hat site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors. The four alternative actions presented in this engineering assessment range from millsite decontamination with the addition of 3 m of stabilization cover material to removal of the tailings to remote disposal sites and decontamination of the tailings site. Cost estimates for the four options range from about $15,200,000 for stabilization in place, to about $45,500,000 for disposal at a distance of about 16 mi. Three principal alternatives for the reprocessing of the Mexican Hat tailings were examined: heap leaching; treatment at an existing mill; and reprocessing at a new conventional mill constructed for tailings reprocessing. The cost of the uranium recovered would be about $115/lb of U/sub 3/O/sub 8/ whether by heap leach or conventional plant processes. The spot market price for uranium was $25/lb early in 1981. Reprocessing the Mexican Hat tailings for uranium recovery is not economically attractive under present conditions.

  20. Summary of the engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings, Shiprock Site, Shiprock, New Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    1981-07-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah Inc. has reevaluated the Shiprock site in order to revise the March 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings at Shiprock, New Mexico. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 1.5 million dry tons of tailings at the Shiprock site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors. The eight alternative actions presented in this engineering assessment range from millsite decontamination with the addition of 3 m of the stabilization cover material (Option I), to removal of the tailings to remote disposal sites and decontamination of the tailings site (Options II through VIII). Cost estimates for the eight options range from about $13,400,000 for stabilization in place to about $37,900,000 for disposal at a distance of about 16 miles. Three principal alternatives for the reprocessing of the Shiprock tailings were examined: (a) heap leaching; (b) treatment at an existing mill; and(c) reprocessing at a new conventional mill constructed for tailings reprocessing. The cost of the uranium recovered would be about $230/lb by heap leach and $250/lb by conventional plant processes. The spot market price for uranium was $25/lb early in 1981. Therefore, reprocessing the tailings for uranium recovery is not economically attractive.

  1. Summary of the engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings: Slick Rock sites, Slick Rock, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    1981-09-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah, Inc., has reevaluated the Slick Rock sites in order to revise the October 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings at Slick Rock, Colorado. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 387,000 tons of tailings at the Slick Rock sites constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors. The five alternative actions presented in this engineering assessment include millsite decontamination with the addition of 3 m of stabilization cover material, consolidation of the piles, and removal of the tailings to remote disposal sites and decontamination of the tailings sites. Cost estimates for the five options range from about $6,800,000 for stabilization in-place, to about $11,000,000 for disposal at a distance of about 6.5 mi. Three principal alternatives for the reprocessing of the Slick Rock tailings were examined: heap leaching; treatment at an existing mill; and reprocessing at a new conventional mill constructed for tailings reprocessing. The cost of the uranium recovered would be over $800/lb of U/sub 3/O/sub 8/ whether by conventional or heap leach plant processes. The spot market price for uranium was $25/lb early in 1981. Therefore, reprocessing the tailings for uranium recovery is not economically attractive at present, nor for the foreseeable future.

  2. Engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings: Phillips/United Nuclear site, Ambrosia Lake, New Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    1981-10-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah, Inc., has reevaluated the Phillips/United Nuclear site in order to revise the December 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings at Ambrosia Lake, New Mexico. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from 2.6 million dry tons of tailings at the Phillips/United Nuclear site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors. The four alternative actions presented in this engineering assessment range from millsite decontamination with the addition of 3 m of stabilization cover material, to removal of the tailings to remote disposal sites and decontamination of the tailings site. Cost estimates for the four options range from about $21,500,000 for stabilization in-place, to about $45,200,000 for disposal at a distance of about 15 mi. Three principal alternatives for the reprocessing of the Phillips/United Nuclear tailings were examined: heap leaching; treatment at an existing mill; and reprocessing at a new conventional mill constructed for tailings reprocessing.The cost of the uranium recovered would be about $87/lb of U/sub 3/O/sub 8/ by either heap leach or conventional plant process. The spot market price for uranium was $25/lb early in 1981. Reprocessing the Phillips/United Nuclear tailings for uranium recovery does not appear to be economically attractive under present or foreseeable market conditions.

  3. Radioecological investigations of uranium mill tailing systems. Sixth technical progress report, October 1, 1984-September 30, 1985

    SciTech Connect

    Whicker, F.W.; Ibrahim, S.A.

    1985-10-31

    This report provides a status report on studies of the integrity and transport of several radionuclides in active and reclaimed uranium mill tailings. The program is designed to provide basic information on the radioecology of uranium and progeny, responses of native biota to the landscape disruptions associated with uranium production, and guidance for impact analysis, mitigation and regulation of the uranium industry. The studies reported are being conducted at the Shirley Basin Uranium Mine, which is operated by the Pathfinder Mines Corporation. The mine/mill operation, located in southeastern Wyoming, is typical in terms of the ore body, mill process, and ecological setting of many uranium production centers in the western United States. The intent has been to quantitatively evaluate the release of important radionuclides from active and reclaimed uranium mill tailings and their entry into the food chain. An experimental plot was developed in which a uniform slab of tailings was covered with various depths of earthen materials and seeded with native range vegetation. Performance of this vegetation is monitored annually. The ability of roots to function in or near buried tailings is under long-term study as well. Experiments on radon flux versus overburden depth have been conducted and these are continuing with emphasis on understanding the role of soil moisture and climatic variables. Experimental colonies of prairie dogs were introduced to the tailings reclamation plot. The resulting disruptive effects in terms of soil movement, transport of radionuclides and the impact on radon emanation have been studied and reported.

  4. Reconstruction of atmospheric concentrations and deposition of uranium and decay products released from the former uranium mill at Uravan, Colorado.

    PubMed

    Rood, Arthur S; Voillequé, Paul G; Rope, Susan K; Grogan, Helen A; Till, John E

    2008-08-01

    Radionuclide concentrations in air from uranium milling emissions were estimated for the town of Uravan, Colorado, USA and the surrounding area for a 49-yr period of mill operations beginning in 1936 and ending in 1984. Milling processes with the potential to emit radionuclides to the air included crushing and grinding of ores; conveyance of ore; ore roasting, drying, and packaging of the product (U(3)O(8)); and fugitive dust releases from ore piles, tailings' piles, and roads. The town of Uravan is located in a narrow canyon formed by the San Miguel River in western Colorado. Atmospheric transport modeling required a complex terrain model. Because historical meteorological data necessary for a complex terrain model were lacking, meteorological instruments were installed, and relevant data were collected for 1 yr. Monthly average dispersion and deposition factors were calculated using the complex terrain model, CALPUFF. Radionuclide concentrations in air and deposition on ground were calculated by multiplying the estimated source-specific release rate by the dispersion or deposition factor. Time-dependent resuspension was also included in the model. Predicted concentrations in air and soil were compared to measurements from continuous air samplers from 1979 to 1986 and to soil profile sampling performed in 2006. The geometric mean predicted-to-observed ratio for annual average air concentrations was 1.25 with a geometric standard deviation of 1.8. Predicted-to-observed ratios for uranium concentrations in undisturbed soil ranged from 0.67 to 1.22. Average air concentrations from 1936 to 1984 in housing blocks ranged from about 2.5 to 6 mBq m(-3) for (238)U and 1.5 to 3.5 mBq m(-3) for (230)Th, (226)Ra, and (210)Pb. PMID:18448213

  5. Engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings: Monument Valley Site, Monument Valley, Arizona

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1981-10-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah Inc. has reevalated the Monument Valley site in order to revise the March 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings at Monument Valley, Arizona. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposure of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 1.1 million tons of tailings at the Monument Valley site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors. The four alternative actions presented in this engineering assessment range from millsite decontamination with the addition of 3 m of stabilization cover material (Option I), to removal of the tailings to remote disposal sites and decontamination of the tailings site (Options II through IV). Cost estimates for the four options range from about $6,600,000 for stabilization in-place, to about $15,900,000 for disposal at a distance of about 15 mi. Three principal alternatives for reprocessing the Monument Valley tailings were examined: heap leaching; Treatment at an existing mill; and reprocessing at a new conventional mill constructed for tailings reprocessing. The cost of the uranium recovery is economically unattractive.

  6. Environmental assessment of remedial action at the Tuba City uranium mill tailings site, Tuba City, Arizona

    SciTech Connect

    1986-11-01

    This document assesses and compares the environmental impacts of various alternatives for remedial action at the Tuba City uranium mill tailings site located approximately six miles east of Tuba City, Arizona. The site covers 105 acres and contains 25 acres of tailings and some of the original mill structures. The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 (UMTRCA), Public Law 95-604, authorizes the US Department of Energy to clean up the site to reduce the potential health impacts associated with the residual radioactive materials remaining at the site and at associated properties off the site. The US Environmental Protection Agency promulgated standards for the remedial actions (40 CFR Part 192). Remedial actions must be performed in accordance with these standards and with the concurrence of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The proposed action is to stabilize the tailings at their present location by consolidating the tailings and associated contaminated materials into a recontoured pile. A radon barrier would be constructed over the pile and various erosion control measures would be taken to assure the long-term stability of the pile. Another alternative which would involve moving the tailings to a new location is also assessed in this document. This alternative would generally involve greater short-term impacts and costs but would result in stabilization of the tailings at a more remote location. The no action alternative is also assessed in this document.

  7. Environmental assessment of remedial action at the Gunnison Uranium Mill Tailings Site, Gunnison, Colorado. [UMTRA Project

    SciTech Connect

    Bachrach, A.; Hoopes, J.; Morycz, D. ); Bone, M.; Cox, S.; Jones, D.; Lechel, D.; Meyer, C.; Nelson, M.; Peel, R.; Portillo, R.; Rogers, L.; Taber, B.; Zelle, P. , Inc., Washington, DC ); Rice, G. )

    1984-12-01

    This document assesses and compares the environmental impacts of various alternatives for remedial action at the Gunnison uranium of mill tailings site located 0.5 miles south of Gunnison, Colorado. The site covers 56 acres and contains 35 acres of tailings, 2 of the original mill buildings and a water tower. The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control of Act of 1978 (UMTRCA), Public Law 95-604, authorizes the US Department of Energy to clean up the site to reduce the potential health impacts associated with the residual radioactive materials remaining at the site and at associated (vicinity) properties off the site. The US Environmental Protection Agency promulgated standards for the remedial actions (40 CFR 192). Remedial actions must be performed in accordance with these standards and with the occurrence of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Four alternatives have been addressed in this document. The first alternative is to consolidate the tailings and associated contaminated soils into a recontoured pile on the southern portion of the existing site. A radon barrier of silty clay would be constructed over the pile and various erosion control measures would be taken to assure the long-term integrity of the pile. Two other alternatives which involve moving the tailings to new locations are assessed in this document. These alternatives generally involve greater short-term impacts and are more costly but would result in the tailings being stabilized in a location farther from the city of Gunnison. The no action alternative is also assessed.

  8. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the uranium mill tailings site near Durango, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1995-02-01

    This risk assessment evaluates the possibility of health and environmental risks from contaminated ground water at the uranium mill tailings site near Durango, Colorado. The former uranium processing site`s contaminated soil and material were removed and placed at a disposal site located in Body Canyon, Colorado, during 1986--1991 by the US Departments of Energy`s Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. Currently, the UMTRA Project is evaluating the nature and extent of ground water contamination at the site. This risk assessment follows an approach similar to that used by the US Environmental Protection Agency. The first step is to determine what site-related contaminants are found in ground water samples. The next step in the risk assessment is to determine how much of these contaminants people might ingest if they got their drinking water from a well on the site. In accordance with standard practice for this type of risk assessment, the highest contaminant concentrations from the most contaminated wells are used. The risk assessment then explains the possible health problems that could result from this amount of contamination.

  9. Diversity and Characterization of Sulfate-Reducing Bacteria in Groundwater at a Uranium Mill Tailings Site

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Yun-Juan; Peacock, Aaron D.; Long, Philip E.; Stephen, John R.; McKinley, James P.; Macnaughton, Sarah J.; Hussain, A. K. M. Anwar; Saxton, Arnold M.; White, David C.

    2001-01-01

    Microbially mediated reduction and immobilization of U(VI) to U(IV) plays a role in both natural attenuation and accelerated bioremediation of uranium-contaminated sites. To realize bioremediation potential and accurately predict natural attenuation, it is important to first understand the microbial diversity of such sites. In this paper, the distribution of sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) in contaminated groundwater associated with a uranium mill tailings disposal site at Shiprock, N.Mex., was investigated. Two culture-independent analyses were employed: sequencing of clone libraries of PCR-amplified dissimilatory sulfite reductase (DSR) gene fragments and phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) biomarker analysis. A remarkable diversity among the DSR sequences was revealed, including sequences from δ-Proteobacteria, gram-positive organisms, and the Nitrospira division. PLFA analysis detected at least 52 different mid-chain-branched saturate PLFA and included a high proportion of 10me16:0. Desulfotomaculum and Desulfotomaculum-like sequences were the most dominant DSR genes detected. Those belonging to SRB within δ-Proteobacteria were mainly recovered from low-uranium (≤302 ppb) samples. One Desulfotomaculum-like sequence cluster overwhelmingly dominated high-U (>1,500 ppb) sites. Logistic regression showed a significant influence of uranium concentration over the dominance of this cluster of sequences (P = 0.0001). This strong association indicates that Desulfotomaculum has remarkable tolerance and adaptation to high levels of uranium and suggests the organism's possible involvement in natural attenuation of uranium. The in situ activity level of Desulfotomaculum in uranium-contaminated environments and its comparison to the activities of other SRB and other functional groups should be an important area for future research. PMID:11425735

  10. An aerial radiological survey of the Durango, Colorado uranium mill tailings site and surrounding area

    SciTech Connect

    Hilton, L.K.

    1981-06-01

    An aerial radiological survey of Durango, Colorado, including the inactive uranium mill tailings piles located southwest of the town, was conducted during August 25--29, 1980, for the Department of Energy's Environmental and Safety Engineering Division. Areas of radiation exposure rates higher than the local background, which was about 15 microrentgens per hour ({mu}R/h), were observed directly over and to the south of the mill tailings piles, over a cemetery, and at two spots near the fairgrounds. The rapidly changing radiation exposure rates at the boundaries of the piles preclude accurate extrapolation of aerial radiological data to ground level exposure rates in their immediate vicinity. Estimated radiation exposure rates close to the piles, however, approached 30 times background, or about 450 {mu}R/h. Radiation exposure rates in a long area extending south from the tailings piles were about 25 {mu}R/h.

  11. Leaching of molybdenum and arsenic from uranium ore and mill tailings

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Landa, E.R.

    1984-01-01

    A sequential, selective extraction procedure was used to assess the effects of sulfuric acid milling on the geochemical associations of molybdenum and arsenic in a uranium ore blend, and the tailings derived therefrom. The milling process removed about 21% of the molybdenum and 53% of the arsenic initially present in the ore. While about one-half of the molybdenum in the ore was water soluble, only about 14% existed in this form in the tailings. The major portion of the extractable molybdenum in the tailings appears to be associated with hydrous oxides of iron, and with alkaline earth sulfate precipitates. In contrast with the pattern seen for molybdenum, the partitioning of arsenic into the various extractable fractions differs little between the ore and the tailings. ?? 1984.

  12. Characterization of long-lived radioactive dust in uranium mill operations

    SciTech Connect

    Bigu, J.; DuPort, P. )

    1992-09-01

    The characteristics of long-lived radioactive dust clouds generated in several mechanical and physiochemical operations in a uranium mill have been investigated. The study consisted of the determination of dust size distribution and of the size distribution of radionuclides associated with particulate matter in the size range less than 0.1 to 26 microns. Experiments were conducted by using two different types of cascade impactors operating at different sampling flow rates. Radionuclide identification was done by using alpha-spectrometry. Long- and short-lived radionuclides were identified in dust samples. The characteristics of the dust clouds depended on the mill operation, such as crushing (vibrating grizzly, jaw crusher, cone crusher); screening; ore transportation; grinding; acid leaching; counter-current decantation; yellow cake precipitation and drying; and yellow cake packaging. In addition, other dust and radioactivity measurements have been carried out.

  13. Characterization of long-lived radioactive dust in uranium mill operations.

    PubMed

    Bigu, J; DuPort, P

    1992-09-01

    The characteristics of long-lived radioactive dust clouds generated in several mechanical and physiochemical operations in a uranium mill have been investigated. The study consisted of the determination of dust size distribution and of the size distribution of radionuclides associated with particulate matter in the size range less than 0.1 to 26 microns. Experiments were conducted by using two different types of cascade impactors operating at different sampling flow rates. Radionuclide identification was done by using alpha-spectrometry. Long- and short-lived radionuclides were identified in dust samples. The characteristics of the dust clouds depended on the mill operation, such as crushing (vibrating grizzly, jaw crusher, cone crusher); screening; ore transportation; grinding; acid leaching; counter-current decantation; yellow cake precipitation and drying; and yellow cake packaging. In addition, other dust and radioactivity measurements have been carried out. PMID:1524034

  14. Environmental assessment of remedial action at the slick rock Uranium Mill Tailings sites Slick Rock, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-09-01

    The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 (42 USC {section} 7901 et seq.), hereafter referred to as the UMTRCA, authorized the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to clean up two uranium mill tailings processing sites near Slick Rock, Colorado, in San Miguel County. The purpose of the cleanup is to reduce the potential health effects associated with the radioactive materials remaining on the sites and on vicinity properties (VPs) associated with the sites. Contaminated materials cover an estimated 55 acres of the Union Carbide (UC) processing site and 12 ac of the North Continent (NC) processing site. The total estimated volume of contaminated materials is approximately 61 8,300 cubic yards. In addition to the contamination in the two processing site areas, four VPs were found to contain contamination. As a result of the tailings being exposed to the environment, contamination associated with the UC and NC sites has leached into shallow ground water. Surface water has not been affected. The closest residence is approximately 0.3 air mi from either site. The proposed action is to remediate the UC and NC sites by removing all contaminated materials within the designated site boundaries or otherwise associated with the sites, and relocating them to, and stabilizing them at, a location approximately 5 road mi (8 km) northeast of the sites on land administered by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Remediation would be performed by the DOE`s Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. All solid contaminated materials would be buried under 5 feet (ft) of rock and soil materials. The proposed disposal site area is currently used by ranchers for cattle grazing over a 7-month period. The closest residence to the proposed disposal site is 2 air mi. An estimated 44 ac of land would be permanently transferred from the BLM to the DOE and restricted from future use.

  15. Swim performance and energy homeostasis in spottail shiner (Notropis hudsonius) collected downstream of a uranium mill.

    PubMed

    Goertzen, Meghan M; Hauck, Dominic W; Phibbs, James; Weber, Lynn P; Janz, David M

    2012-01-01

    The Key Lake uranium milling operation (Saskatchewan, Canada) releases complex effluent into the local watershed. The objective of the current study was to investigate whether fish from an effluent-receiving waterbody exhibited differences in swimming performance and energy homeostasis compared to fish from a local reference site. Juvenile spottail shiner (Notropis hudsonius) were collected from a lake downstream of the uranium mill, and compared to fish collected from a nearby reference lake. Critical swimming speed (U(crit); fatigue velocity), tail beat frequency, and tail amplitude did not differ significantly when comparing fish collected from the exposure lake and reference lake. Captured shiner used in swim tests were considered fatigued, and metabolic endpoints were compared between this group and non-fatigued fish, which were treated similarly but not subjected to swim tests. In both non-fatigued and fatigued shiner, liver glycogen was significantly greater in fish collected from the exposure lake compared to the reference lake. However, it is unclear if this effect, and others related to condition, were the result of contaminant exposure or other environmental factors. While there were no differences in plasma lactate, hematocrit or liver triglycerides in non-fatigued fish between sites, only fatigued reference fish had increased lactate and hematocrit and decreased triglycerides. In non-fatigued fish, plasma glucose did not significantly differ between sites, but significantly decreased after swimming only in fish from the exposure lake. In summary, shiner from the exposure site demonstrated similar swim endurance and possessed greater energy stores despite metabolic alterations compared to shiner from the reference site. Therefore, because fish collected downstream of the uranium mill operation had similar swimming ability as fish from the reference lake, U(crit) test results presented here may not reflect or be indicative of metabolic effects of complex

  16. Refining the site conceptual model at a former uranium mill site in Riverton, Wyoming, USA

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Dam, William; Campbell, Sam; Johnson, Ray; Looney, Brian; Denham, Miles E.; Eddy-Dilek, Carol A.; Babits, Steven J.

    2015-07-07

    Milling activities at a former uranium mill site near Riverton, Wyoming, USA, contaminated the shallow groundwater beneath and downgradient of the site. Although the mill operated for <6 years (1958-1963), its impact remains an environmental liability. Groundwater modeling predicted that contaminant concentrations were declining steadily, which confirmed the conceptual site model (CSM). However, local flooding in 2010 mobilized contaminants that migrated downgradient from the Riverton site and resulted in a dramatic increase in groundwater contaminant concentrations. This observation indicated that the original CSM was inadequate to explain site conditions and needed to be refined. In response to the new observationsmore » after the flood, a collaborative investigation to better understand site conditions and processes commenced. This investigation included installing 103 boreholes to collect soil and groundwater samples, sampling and analysis of evaporite minerals along the bank of the Little Wind River, an analysis of evaportranspiration in the shallow aquifer, and sampling naturally organic-rich sediments near groundwater discharge areas. The enhanced characterization revealed that the existing CSM did not account for high uranium concentrations in groundwater remaining on the former mill site and groundwater plume stagnation near the Little Wind River. Observations from the flood and subsequent investigations indicate that additional characterization is still needed to continue refining the CSM and determine the viability of the natural flushing compliance strategy. Additional sampling, analysis, and testing of soil and groundwater are necessary to investigate secondary contaminant sources, mobilization of contaminants during floods, geochemical processes, contaminant plume stagnation, distribution of evaporite minerals and organic-rich sediments, and mechanisms and rates of contaminant transfer from soil to groundwater. Future data collection will be used to

  17. Refining the site conceptual model at a former uranium mill site in Riverton, Wyoming, USA

    SciTech Connect

    Dam, William; Campbell, Sam; Johnson, Ray; Looney, Brian; Denham, Miles E.; Eddy-Dilek, Carol A.; Babits, Steven J.

    2015-07-07

    Milling activities at a former uranium mill site near Riverton, Wyoming, USA, contaminated the shallow groundwater beneath and downgradient of the site. Although the mill operated for <6 years (1958-1963), its impact remains an environmental liability. Groundwater modeling predicted that contaminant concentrations were declining steadily, which confirmed the conceptual site model (CSM). However, local flooding in 2010 mobilized contaminants that migrated downgradient from the Riverton site and resulted in a dramatic increase in groundwater contaminant concentrations. This observation indicated that the original CSM was inadequate to explain site conditions and needed to be refined. In response to the new observations after the flood, a collaborative investigation to better understand site conditions and processes commenced. This investigation included installing 103 boreholes to collect soil and groundwater samples, sampling and analysis of evaporite minerals along the bank of the Little Wind River, an analysis of evaportranspiration in the shallow aquifer, and sampling naturally organic-rich sediments near groundwater discharge areas. The enhanced characterization revealed that the existing CSM did not account for high uranium concentrations in groundwater remaining on the former mill site and groundwater plume stagnation near the Little Wind River. Observations from the flood and subsequent investigations indicate that additional characterization is still needed to continue refining the CSM and determine the viability of the natural flushing compliance strategy. Additional sampling, analysis, and testing of soil and groundwater are necessary to investigate secondary contaminant sources, mobilization of contaminants during floods, geochemical processes, contaminant plume stagnation, distribution of evaporite minerals and organic-rich sediments, and mechanisms and rates of contaminant transfer from soil to groundwater. Future data collection will be used to

  18. Leaching of radionuclides from uranium ore and mill tailings ( Ra- 226, Tn-230).

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Landa, E.R.

    1982-01-01

    The major part of the extractable uranium is associated with a readily acid-soluble fraction in both ore and tailings. The major part of the extractable 226Ra was associated with an iron, manganese hydrous-oxide fraction in the ore and tailings. Thorium-230 was the least leachable of the radionuclides studied. The major portion of the extractable 230Th was associated with alkaline-earth sulphate precipitates, organic matter, or both. The specific effects of milling on each of the nuclides are discussed.-Author

  19. Environmental Assessment of Remedial Action at the Riverton Uranium Mill Tailings Site, Riverton, Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    1987-06-01

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) has prepared an environmental assessment (DOE/EA-0254) on the proposed remedial action at the inactive uranium milling site near Riverton, Wyoming. Based on the analyses in the EA, the DOE has determined that the proposed action does not constitute a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment within the meaning of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321, et seq.). Therefore, the preparation of an environmental impact statement (EIS) is not required.

  20. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project Safety Advancement Field Effort (SAFE) Program

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-02-01

    In 1992, the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project experienced several health and safety related incidents at active remediation project sites. As a result, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) directed the Technical Assistance Contractor (TAC) to establish a program increasing the DOE`s overall presence at operational remediation sites to identify and minimize risks in operations to the fullest extent possible (Attachments A and B). In response, the TAC, in cooperation with the DOE and the Remedial Action Contractor (RAC), developed the Safety Advancement Field Effort (SAFE) Program.

  1. Environmental assessment of remedial action at the Maybell uranium mill tailings site near Maybell, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1993-09-01

    The purpose of this environmental assessment (EA) is to evaluate the environmental impacts resulting from remedial action at the Maybell uranium mill tailings site near Maybell, Colorado. A biological assessment (Attachment 1) and a floodplain/wetlands assessment (Assessment 2) are included as part of this EA. The following sections and attachments describe the proposed action, affected environment, and environmental impacts associated with the proposed remedial action, including impacts to threatened and endangered species listed or proposed for listing by the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

  2. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project fiscal year 1997 annual report to stakeholders

    SciTech Connect

    1997-12-31

    The fiscal year (FY) 1997 annual report is the 19th report on the status of the US Department of Energy`s (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. In 1978, Congress directed the DOE to assess and clean up contamination at 24 designated former uranium processing sites. The DOE is also responsible for cleaning up properties in the vicinity of the sites where wind and water erosion deposited tailings or people removed them from the site for use in construction or landscaping. Cleanup has been undertaken in cooperation with state governments and Indian tribes within whose boundaries the sites are located. It is being conducted in two phases: the surface project and the groundwater project. This report addresses specifics about the UMTRA surface project.

  3. Fiscal year 1996 annual report to stakeholders, Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project

    SciTech Connect

    1996-10-01

    This is the Fiscal Year (FY) 1996 annual report on the status of the US Department of Energy`s (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. In 1978, Congress directed the DOE to assess and clean up contamination at 24 designated former uranium processing sites. The DOE is also responsible for cleaning up properties in the vicinity of the sites where wind and water erosion deposited tailings or people removed them from the site for use in construction of landscaping. Cleanup is being undertaken in cooperation with state governments and Indian tribes within whose boundaries the sites are located. It is being conducted in two phases: the surface project and the ground water project. This report addresses specifics about the surface phase of the UMTRA Project.

  4. Radiologic characterization of the Mexican Hat, Utah, uranium mill tailings remedial action site: Addendum D1

    SciTech Connect

    Ludlam, J.R.

    1985-01-01

    This radiologic characterization of the inactive uranium millsite at Mexican Hat, Utah, was conducted by Bendix Field Engineering Corporation for the US Department of Energy (DOE), Grand Junctions Project Office in response to and in accord with a Statement of Work prepared by the DOE Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project (UMTRAP) Technical Assistance Contractor, Jacobs Engineering Group, Inc. The objective of this project was to determine the horizontal and vertical extent of contamination that exceeds the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards at the Mexican Hat site. The data presented in this report are required for characterization of the areas adjacent to the Mexican Hat tailings piles and for the subsequent design of cleanup activities. Some on- pile sampling was required to determine the depth of the 15-pCi/g Ra- 226 interface in an area where wind and water erosion has taken place.

  5. Uptake of Uranium and Other Elements of Concern by Plants Growing on Uranium Mill Tailings Disposal Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Joseph, C. N.; Waugh, W.; Glenn, E.

    2015-12-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is responsible for long-term stewardship of disposal cells for uranium mill tailings throughout the United States. Rock-armored disposal cell covers create favorable habitat for deep-rooted plants by reducing soil evaporation, increasing soil water storage, and trapping windblown dust, thereby providing water and nutrients for plant germination and establishment. DOE is studying the tradeoffs of potential detrimental and beneficial effects of plants growing on disposal cell covers to develop a rational and consistent vegetation management policy. Plant roots often extend vertically through disposal cell covers into underlying tailings, therefore, uptake of tailings contaminants and dissemination through animals foraging on stems and leaves is a possible exposure pathway. The literature shows that plant uptake of contaminants in uranium mill tailings occurs, but levels can vary widely depending on plant species, tailings and soil chemistry, and cover soil hydrology. Our empirical field study measured concentrations of uranium, radium, thorium, molybdenum, selenium, manganese, lead, and arsenic in above ground tissues harvested from plants growing on disposal cells near Native American communities in western states that represent a range of climates, cover designs, cover soil types, and vegetation types. For risk screening, contaminant levels in above ground tissues harvested from plants on disposal cells were compared to Maximum Tolerance Levels (MTLs) set for livestock by the National Research Council, and to tissue levels in the same plant species growing in reference areas near disposal cells. Although tailings were covered with uncontaminated soils, for 14 of 46 comparisons, levels of uranium and other contaminants were higher in plants growing on disposal cells compared to reference area plants, indicating possible mobilization of these elements from the tailing into plant tissues. However, with one exception, all plant

  6. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the uranium mill tailings sites near Slick Rock, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-11-01

    This baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the uranium mill tailings sites near Slick Rock, Colorado, evaluates potential public health and environmental impacts resulting from ground water contamination at the former North Continent (NC) and Union Carbide (UC) uranium mill processing sites. The tailings at these sites will be placed in a disposal cell at the proposed Burro Canyon, Colorado, site. The US Department of Energy (DOE) anticipates the start of the first phase remedial action by the spring of 1995 under the direction of the DOE`s Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. The second phase of the UMTRA Project will evaluate ground water contamination. This baseline risk assessment is the first site-specific document for these sites under the Ground Water Project. It will help determine the compliance strategy for contaminated ground water at the site. In addition, surface water and sediment are qualitatively evaluated in this report.

  7. Engineering solutions to the long-term stabilization and isolation of uranium mill tailings in the United States

    SciTech Connect

    Sanders, D.R.; Lommler, J.C.

    1995-03-01

    Engineering solutions to the safe and environmentally protective disposal and isolation of uranium mill tailings in the US include many factors. Cover design, materials selection, civil engineering, erosive forces, and cost effectiveness are only a few of those factors described in this paper. The systems approach to the engineering solutions employed in the US is described, with emphasis on the standards prescribed for the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project. Stabilization and isolation of the tailings from humans and the environment are the primary goals of the US uranium mill tailings control standards. The performance of cover designs with respect to water infiltration, radon exhalation, geotechnical stability, erosion protection, human and animal intrusion prevention, and longevity are addressed. The need for and frequency of surveillance efforts to ensure continued disposal system performance are also assessed.

  8. Evolution of uranium distribution and speciation in mill tailings, COMINAK Mine, Niger.

    PubMed

    Déjeant, Adrien; Galoisy, Laurence; Roy, Régis; Calas, Georges; Boekhout, Flora; Phrommavanh, Vannapha; Descostes, Michael

    2016-03-01

    This study investigated the evolution of uranium distribution and speciation in mill tailings from the COMINAK mine (Niger), in production since 1978. A multi-scale approach was used, which combined high resolution remote sensing imagery, ICP-MS bulk rock analyses, powder X-ray diffraction, Scanning Electron Microscopy, Focused Ion Beam--Transmission Electron Microscopy and X-ray Absorption Near Edge Spectroscopy. Mineralogical analyses showed that some ore minerals, including residual uraninite and coffinite, undergo alteration and dissolution during tailings storage. The migration of uranium and other contaminants depends on (i) the chemical stability of secondary phases and sorbed species (dissolution and desorption processes), and (ii) the mechanical transport of fine particles bearing these elements. Uranium is stabilized after formation of secondary uranyl sulfates and phosphates, and adsorbed complexes on mineral surfaces (e.g. clay minerals). In particular, the stock of insoluble uranyl phosphates increases with time, thus contributing to the long-term stabilization of uranium. At the surface, a sulfate-cemented duricrust is formed after evaporation of pore water. This duricrust limits water infiltration and dust aerial dispersion, though it is enriched in uranium and many other elements, because of pore water rising from underlying levels by capillary action. Satellite images provided a detailed description of the tailings pile over time and allow monitoring of the chronology of successive tailings deposits. Satellite images suggest that uranium anomalies that occur at deep levels in the pile are most likely former surface duricrusts that have been buried under more recent tailings. PMID:26747998

  9. Comment and response document for the final remedial action plan and site design for stabilization of the inactive uranium mill tailings sites at Slick Rock, Colorado. Revision 2

    SciTech Connect

    1996-05-01

    This document for the final remedial action plan and site design has been prepared for US Department of Energy Environmental Restoration Division as part of the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action plan. Comments and responses are included for the site design for stabilization of the inactive uranium mill tailings sites at Slick Rock, Colorado.

  10. Remedial action plan and site design for stabilization of the inactive uranium mill tailings sites at Rifle, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-02-01

    This appendix assesses the present conditions and data gathered about the two inactive uranium mill tailings sites near Rifle, Colorado, and the designated disposal site six miles north of Rifle in the area of Estes Gulch. It consolidates available engineering, radiological, geotechnical, hydrological, meteorological, and other information pertinent to the design of the Remedial Action Plan (RAP). The data characterize conditions at the mill, tailings, and disposal site so that the Remedial Action Contractor (RAC) may complete final designs for the remedial actions.

  11. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the uranium mill tailings site Salt Lake City, Utah

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-09-01

    This baseline risk assessment of groundwater contamination at the uranium mill tailings site near Salt Lake City, Utah, evaluates potential public health or environmental impacts resulting from ground water contamination at the former uranium ore processing site. The tailings and other contaminated material at this site were placed in a disposal cell located at Clive, Utah, in 1987 by the US Department of Energy`s Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. The second phase of the UMTRA Project is to evaluate residual ground water contamination at the former uranium processing site, known as the Vitro processing site. This risk assessment is the first site-specific document under the Ground Water Project. It will help determine the appropriate remedial action for contaminated ground water at the site.

  12. Summary report on reprocessing evaluation of selected inactive uranium mill tailings sites

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1983-09-01

    Sandia National Laboratories has been assisting the Department of Energy in the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Actions Program (UMTRAP) the purpose of which is to implement the provisions of Title I of Public Law 95-604, Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978.'' As part of this program, there was a need to evaluate the mineral concentration of the residual radioactive materials at some of the designated processing sites to determine whether mineral recovery would be practicable. Accordingly, Sandia contracted Mountain States Research and Development (MSRD), a division of Mountain States Mineral Enterprises, to drill, sample, and test tailings at 12 sites to evaluate the cost of and the revenue that could be derived from mineral recovery. UMTRAP related environmental and engineering sampling and support activities were performed in conjunction with the MSRD operations. This summary report presents a brief description of the various activities in the program and of the data and information obtained and summarizes the results. 8 refs., 9 tabs.

  13. Project licensing plan for UMTRA (Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action) sites

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1984-07-01

    The purpose of the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project Licensing Plan is to establish how a disposal site will be licensed, and to provide responsibilities of participatory agencies as legislated by the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act (UMTRCA) of 1978 (Public Law 95-604). This Plan has been developed to ensure that the objectives of licensing are met by identifying the necessary institutional controls, participatory agency responsibilities, and key milestones in the licensing process. The Plan contains the legislative basis for and a description of the licensing process ( Process'') for UMTRA sites. This is followed by a discussion of agency responsibilities, and milestones in the Process. The Plan concludes with a generic timeline of this Process. As discussed in Section 2.1, a custodial maintenance and surveillance plan will constitute the basis for a site license. The details of maintenance and surveillance are discussed in the Project Maintenance and Surveillance Plan (AL-350124.0000). 5 refs., 4 figs.

  14. NUCLEAR ISOTOPIC DILUTION OF HIGHLY ENRICHED URANIUM BY DRY BLENDING VIA THE RM-2 MILL TECHNOLOGY

    SciTech Connect

    Raj K. Rajamani; Sanjeeva Latchireddi; Vikas Devrani; Harappan Sethi; Roger Henry; Nate Chipman

    2003-08-01

    DOE has initiated numerous activities to focus on identifying material management strategies to disposition various excess fissile materials. In particular the INEEL has stored 1,700 Kg of offspec HEU at INTEC in CPP-651 vault facility. Currently, the proposed strategies for dispositioning are (a) aqueous dissolution and down blending to LEU via facilities at SRS followed by shipment of the liquid LEU to NFS for fabrication into LWR fuel for the TVA reactors and (b) dilution of the HEU to 0.9% for discard as a waste stream that would no longer have a criticality or proliferation risk without being processed through some type of enrichment system. Dispositioning this inventory as a waste stream via aqueous processing at SRS has been determined to be too costly. Thus, dry blending is the only proposed disposal process for the uranium oxide materials in the CPP-651 vault. Isotopic dilution of HEU to typically less than 20% by dry blending is the key to solving the dispositioning issue (i.e., proliferation) posed by HEU stored at INEEL. RM-2 mill is a technology developed and successfully tested for producing ultra-fine particles by dry grinding. Grinding action in RM-2 mill produces a two million-fold increase in the number of particles being blended in a centrifugal field. In a previous study, the concept of achieving complete and adequate blending and mixing (i.e., no methods were identified to easily separate and concentrate one titanium compound from the other) in remarkably short processing times was successfully tested with surrogate materials (titanium dioxide and titanium mono-oxide) with different particle sizes, hardness and densities. In the current project, the RM-2 milling technology was thoroughly tested with mixtures of natural uranium oxide (NU) and depleted uranium oxide (DU) stock to prove its performance. The effects of mill operating and design variables on the blending of NU/DU oxides were evaluated. First, NU and DU both made of the same oxide

  15. Measurements of /sup 234/U, /sup 238/U and /sup 230/Th in excreta of uranium-mill crushermen

    SciTech Connect

    Fisher, D.R.; Jackson, P.O.; Brodacynski, G.G.; Scherpelz, R.I.

    1982-07-01

    Uranium and thorium levels in excreta of uranium mill crushermen who are routinely exposed to airborne uranium ore dust were measured. The purpose was to determine whether /sup 230/Th was preferentially retained over either /sup 234/U or /sup 238/U in the body. Urine and fecal samples were obtained from fourteen active crushermen with long histories of exposure to uranium ore dust, plus four retired crushermen and three control individuals for comparison. Radiochemical procedures were used to separate out the uranium and thorium fractions, which were then electroplated on stainless steel discs and assayed by alpha spectrometry. Significantly greater activity levels of /sup 234/U and /sup 238/U were measured in both urine and fecal samples obtained from uranium mill crushermen, indicating that uranium in the inhaled ore dust was cleared from the body with a shorter biological half-time than the daughter product /sup 230/Th. The measurements also indicated that uranium and thorium separate in vivo and have distinctly different metabolic pathways and transfer rates in the body. The appropriateness of current ICRP retention and clearance parameters for /sup 230/Th in ore dust is questioned.

  16. Quality Assurance Program Plan for the radiological survey activities program --- Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project

    SciTech Connect

    Knott, R.R.; Little, C.A.

    1991-08-01

    The Pollutant Assessments Group (PAG) at the Grand Junction Office (GJO), Colorado, of Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is responsible for surveying designated sites in the vicinity of 24 inactive mill sites involved in the Department of Energy's (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project (UMTRAP). The purpose of these surveys is to provide a recommendation to DOE whether to include or exclude these sites from UMTRAP based on whether the on-site residual radioactive material (if any) originated from the former mill sites, and radiation levels on-site are in excess of appropriate Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) criteria. This report describes the Quality Assurance Plan (QAP) for the PAG in conducting all activities related to UMTRAP. All quality assurance provisions given by the DOE, DOE/UMTRA and ORNL organizations are integrated into this plan. Specifically, this report identifies the policies and procedures followed in accomplishing the PAG/UMTRA QA program, identifies those organizational units involved in the implementation of these procedures, and outlines the respective responsibilities of those groups. 11 refs., 6 figs., 3 tabs.

  17. Laboratory measurements of contaminant attenuation of uranium mill tailings leachates by sediments and clay liners

    SciTech Connect

    Serne, R.J.; Peterson, S.R.; Gee, G.W.

    1983-04-01

    We discuss FY82 progress on the development of laboratory tools to aid in the prediction of migration potential of contaminants present in acidic uranium mill tailings leachate. Further, empirical data on trace metal and radionuclide migration through a clay liner are presented. Acidic uranium mill tailings solution from a Wyoming mill was percolated through a composite sediment called Morton Ranch Clay liner. These laboratory columns and subsequent sediment extraction data show: (1) As, Cr, Pb, Ag, Th and V migrate very slowly; (2) U, Cd, Ni, Zn, Fe, Mn and similar transition metals are initially immobilized during acid neutralization but later are remobilized as the tailings solution exhausts the clay liner's acid buffering capacity. Such metals remain immobilized as long as the effluent pH remains above a pH value of 4 to 4.5, but they become mobile once the effluent pH drops below this range; and (3) fractions of the Se and Mo present in the influent tailings solution are very mobile. Possible controlling mechanisms for the pH-dependent immobilization-mobilization of the trace metals are discussed. More study is required to understand the controlling mechanisms for Se and Mo and Ra for which data were not successfully collected. Using several column lengths (from 4.5 to 65 cm) and pore volume residence times (from 0.8 to 40 days) we found no significant differences in contaminant migration rates or types and extent of controlling processes. Thus, we conclude that the laboratory results may be capable of extrapolation to actual disposal site conditions.

  18. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Naturita, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    1995-08-01

    The Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project consists of the Surface Project (phase I), and the Ground Water Project (phase II). For the UMTRA Project site located near Naturita, Colorado (the Naturita site), phase I involves the removal of radioactively contaminated soils and materials and their transportation to a disposal site at Union Carbide Corporation`s Upper Burbank Repository at Uravan, Colorado, about 13 road miles (mi) (21 kilometers [km]) to the northwest. No uranium mill tailings are involved because the tailings were removed from the Naturita site and placed at Coke Oven, Colorado, during 1977 to 1979. Phase II of the project will evaluate the nature and extent of ground water contamination resulting from uranium processing and its effect on human health or the environment; and will determine site-specific ground water compliance strategies in accordance with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ground water standards established for the UMTRA Project. Human health risks could occur from drinking water pumped from a hypothetical well drilled in the contaminated ground water area. Environmental risks may result if plants or animals are exposed to contaminated ground water, or surface water that has received contaminated ground water. Therefore, a risk assessment is conducted for the Naturita site. This risk assessment report is the first site-specific document prepared for the Ground Water Project at the Naturita site. What follows is an evaluation of current and possible future impacts to the public and the environment from exposure to contaminated ground water. The results of this evaluation and further site characterization will be used to determine whether any action is needed to protect human health or the environment.

  19. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the uranium mill tailings site near Canonsburg, Pennsylvania

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-09-01

    This baseline risk assessment evaluates potential impacts to public health and the environment resulting from ground water contamination from past activities at the former uranium processing site in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania. The US Department of Energy Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project has placed contaminated material from this site in an on-site disposal cell. Currently, the UMTRA Project is evaluating ground water contamination. This risk assessment is the first document specific to this site for the UMTRA Ground Water Project. Currently, no domestic or drinking water well tap into contaminated ground water of the two distinct ground water units: the unconsolidated materials and the bedrock. Because there is no access, no current health or environmental risks are associated with the direct use of the contaminated ground water. However, humans and ecological organisms could be exposed to contaminated ground water if a domestic well were to be installed in the unconsolidated materials in that part of the site being considered for public use (Area C). The first step is evaluating ground water data collected from monitor wells at the site. For the Canonsburg site, this evaluation showed the contaminants in ground water exceeding background in the unconsolidated materials in Area C are ammonia, boron, calcium, manganese, molybdenum, potassium, strontium, and uranium.

  20. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Maybell, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    1996-03-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project consists of the Surface Project (Phase I) and the Ground Water Project (Phase II). Under the UMTRA Surface Project, tailings, contaminated soil, building foundations, and materials associated with the former processing of uranium ore at UMTRA Project sites are placed into disposal cells. The cells are designed to reduce radon and other radiation emissions and to prevent further contamination of ground water. One UMTRA Project site is near Maybell, Colorado. Surface cleanup at this site began in 1995 and is scheduled for completion in 1996. The tailings are being stabilized in place at this site. The disposal area has been withdrawn from public use by the DOE and is referred to as the permanent withdrawal area. The Ground Water Project evaluates the nature and extent of ground water contamination resulting from past uranium ore processing activities. The Ground Water Project at this site is in its beginning stages. This report is a site-specific document that will be used to evaluate current and future potential impacts to the public and the environment from exposure to contaminated ground water. The results presented in this document and other evaluations will determine whether any action is needed to protect human health or the environment.

  1. Economic evaluation of inactive uranium mill tailings, Ambrosia Lake Site, Ambrosia Lake, New Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Teel, J.H.

    1982-12-01

    Mountain States Research and Development was contracted on March 1, 1981 to make an economic evaluation study at each of 12 abandoned uranium mill tailings sites in the western states. The objective of this work was to obtain the data necessary at each site to determine the possible revenue that could be derived from reprocessing the tailings. To accomplish this objective a drilling and sampling program was established for each site to determine the total amount of tailings and subbase material available for treatment and the amount of recoverable uranium, vanadium and molybdenum. These three metals were selected due to their common occurrence in uranium ores and common extractability in the leaching process. Laboratory leaching was then conducted on the samples obtained to determine the extractability of each of these metals and the optimum plant process to be applied. As the metal contents were generally low and represented mineral that had not been leached during previous processing, the economic evaluation is limited to consideration of the direct capital and operating costs required in connection with processing of each respective site material. Excavating, transportation and disposal of the material from each site in an environmentally acceptable location and manner was not within the scope of this project. It will be necessary to complete a separate study of these areas in order to determine the total costs involved. This report contains the results of the investigations of the Old Rifle Site.

  2. Economic evaluation of inactive uranium mill tailings, Gunnison Site, Gunnison, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    Teel, J H

    1982-12-01

    Mountain States Research and Development was contracted on March 1, 1981 to make an economic evaluation study at each of 12 abandoned uranium mill tailings sites in the western states. The objective of this work was to obtain the data necessary at each site to determine the possible revenue that could be derived from reprocessing the tailings. To accomplish this objective a drilling and sampling program was established for each site to determine the total amount of tailings and subbase material available for treatment and the amount of recoverable uranium, vanadium and molybdenum. These three metals were selected due to their common occurrence in uranium ores and common extractability in the leaching process. Laboratory leaching was then conducted on the samples obtained to determine the extractability of each of these metals and the optimum plant process to be applied. As the metal contents were generally low and represented mineral that had not been leached during previous processing, the economic evaluation is limited to consideration of the direct capital and operating costs required in connection with processing of each respective site material. Excavating, transportation and disposal of the material from each site in an environmentally acceptable location and manner was not within the scope of this project. It will be necessary to complete a separate study of these areas in order to determine the total costs involved. This report contains the results of the investigations of the Old Rifle Site.

  3. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the uranium mill tailings site near Canonsburg, Pennsylvania. Revision 1

    SciTech Connect

    1995-11-01

    For the UMTRA Project site located near Canonsburg, Pennsylvania (the Canonsburg site), the Surface Project cleanup occurred from 1983 to 1985, and involved removing the uranium processing mill tailings and radioactively contaminated soils and materials from their original locations and placing them in a disposal cell located on the former Canonsburg uranium mill site. This disposal cell is designed to minimize radiation emissions and further contamination of ground water beneath the site. The Ground Water Project will evaluate the nature and the extent of ground water contamination resulting from uranium processing at the former Canonsburg uranium mill site, and will determine a ground water strategy for complying with the US Environmental Protection Agency`s (EPA) ground water standards established for the UMTRA Project. For the Canonsburg site, an evaluation was made to determine whether exposure to ground water contaminated by uranium processing could affect people`s health. This risk assessment report is the first site-specific document prepared for the UMTRA Ground Water Project at the Canonsburg site. The results of this report and further site characterization of the Canonsburg site will be used to determine how to protect public health and the environment, and how to comply with the EPA standards.

  4. Waste minimization opportunities at the U.S. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project, Rifle, Colorado, site

    SciTech Connect

    Hartmann, G.L.; Arp, S.; Hempill, H.

    1993-12-31

    At two uranium mill sites in Rifle, Colorado, the US Department of Energy (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project is removing uranium mill tailings and contaminated subgrade soils. This remediation activity will result in the production of groundwater contaminated with uranium, heavy metals, ammonia, sulfates, and total dissolved solids (TDS). The initial remediation plan called for a wastewater treatment plant for removal of the uranium, heavy metals, and ammonia, with disposal of the treated water, which still includes the sulfates and TDSS, to the Colorado River. The National Pollutant Discharge Elimination (NPDES) permit issued by the Colorado Department of Health for the two Rifle sites contained more restrictive discharge limits than originally anticipated. During the detailed review of alternate treatment systems to meet these more restrictive limits, the proposed construction procedures were reviewed emphasizing the methods to minimize groundwater production to reduce the size of the water treatment facility, or to eliminate it entirely. It was determined that with changes to the excavation procedures and use of the contaminated groundwater for use in dust suppression at the disposal site, discharge to the river could be eliminated completely.

  5. Radiological survey of the inactive uranium-mill tailings at Gunnison, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    Haywood, F.F.; Jacobs, D.G.; Hubbard, H.M. Jr.; Ellis, B.S.; Shinpaugh, W.H.

    1980-03-01

    The findings of a radiological survey of the inactive uranium-mill site at Gunnison, Colorado, conducted in May 1976, are presented. Results of surface soil sample analyses and direct gamma radiation measurements indicate limited spread of tailings off the site. The only significant above background measurements off the site were obtained in an area previously covered by the tailings pile. There was little evidence of contamination of the surface or of unconfined groundwater in the vicinity of the tailings pile; however, the hydrologic conditions at the site indicate a potential for such contamination. The concentration of /sup 226/Ra in all water samples except one from the tailings pile was well below the concentration guide for drinking water. The subsurface distribution of /sup 226/Ra in 14 bore holes located on and around the tailings pile was calculated from gamma ray monitoring data obtained jointly with Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah Inc.

  6. Summary of the engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings, Tuba City site, Tuba City, Arizona

    SciTech Connect

    1981-09-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah Inc. has reevaluated the Tuba City site in order to revise the March 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings at Tuba City, Arizona. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 0.8 million tons of tailings at the Tuba City site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors.

  7. Engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings, Tuba City site, Tuba City, Arizona

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1981-09-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah Inc. has reevaluated the Tuba City site in order to revise the March 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings at Tuba City, Arizona. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 0.8 million tons of tailings at the Tuba City site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors.

  8. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project: Cost Reduction and Productivity Improvement Program Project Plan

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-11-01

    The purpose of the Cost Reduction/Productivity Improvement Program Plan is to formalize and improve upon existing efforts to control costs which have been underway since project inception. This program plan has been coordinated with the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Environmental Management (EM) and the DOE Field Office, Albuquerque (AL). It incorporates prior Uranium Mill Tallings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project Office guidance issued on the subject. The opportunities for reducing cosh and improving productivity are endless. The CR/PIP has these primary objectives: Improve productivity and quality; heighten the general cost consciousness of project participants, at all levels of their organizations; identify and implement specific innovative employee ideas that extend beyond what is required through existing processes and procedures; emphasize efforts that create additional value for the money spent by maintaining the project Total Estimated Cost (TEC) at the lowest possible level.

  9. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project: Cost Reduction and Productivity Improvement Program Project Plan. Revised

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-11-01

    The purpose of the Cost Reduction/Productivity Improvement Program Plan is to formalize and improve upon existing efforts to control costs which have been underway since project inception. This program plan has been coordinated with the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Environmental Management (EM) and the DOE Field Office, Albuquerque (AL). It incorporates prior Uranium Mill Tallings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project Office guidance issued on the subject. The opportunities for reducing cosh and improving productivity are endless. The CR/PIP has these primary objectives: Improve productivity and quality; heighten the general cost consciousness of project participants, at all levels of their organizations; identify and implement specific innovative employee ideas that extend beyond what is required through existing processes and procedures; emphasize efforts that create additional value for the money spent by maintaining the project Total Estimated Cost (TEC) at the lowest possible level.

  10. Summary of the engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings, Spook Site, Converse County, Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1981-10-01

    Ford, Bacon, Davis Utah Inc. has reevaluated the Spook site in order to revise the December 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings 48 mi northeast of Casper, in Converse County, Wyoming. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 187,000 tons of tailings at the Spook site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors.

  11. Management and overview Quality Assurance Program Plan. [Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1986-08-01

    The Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project Office (DOE/ UMTRA-PO) is the US Department of Energy (DOE) Albuquerque Operations Office (AL) organization charged with the responsibility of managing and coordinating the activities of the various participating organizations and support contractors working on the UMTRA Project. This Quality Assurance Program Plan (QAPP) describes how the DOE/UMTRA-PO, as assisted by the Technical Assistance Contractor (TAC), performs the quality assurance (QA) aspects of managing and coordinating UMTRA Project activities. This QAPP was developed to comply with DOE Order 5700.6A, August, 1981, and AL Order 5700.6B, April, 1984, which contain the criteria applicable to Project QA activities.

  12. Radiological survey of the inactive uranium-mill tailings at Durango, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    Haywood, F.F.; Perdue, P.T.; Shinpaugh, W.H.; Ellis, B.S.; Chou, K.D.

    1980-03-01

    Results of a radiological survey of the inactive uranium-mill site at Durango, Colorado, conducted in April 1976, in cooperation with a team from Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah Inc., are presented together with descriptions of the instruments and techniques used to obtain the data. Direct above-ground gamma measurements and analysis of surface soil and sediment samples indicate movement of tailings from the piles toward Lightner Creek on the north and the Animas River on the east side of the piles. The concentration of /sup 226/Ra in the former raffinate pond area is only slightly above the background level. Two structures in Durango were found to contain high concentrations of airborne radon daughters, where tailings are known to have been utilized in construction. Near-background concentrations of radon daughters were found in a well-ventilated building close to the tailings.

  13. Revegetation/rock cover for stabilization of inactive uranium mill tailings disposal sites

    SciTech Connect

    Beedlow, P.A.; McShane, M.C.; Cadwell, L.L.

    1982-07-01

    Pacific Northwest Laboratory is developing design and performance guidelines for surface stabilization of inactive uranium mill tailings. In this work, vegetation and rock covers are being evaluated for maintaining long-term integrity of impoundment systems. Methods are being developed to estimate erosion rates associated with rock and/or vegetation covers, and to determine the effects of surface treatments on soil moisture. Interactions between surface treatments and barriers (radon and biological) are being studied as well. The product will be a set of guidelines to aid in designing surface covers. This report presents the status of this program and a discussion of considerations pertinent to the application of surface covers to tailings. Test plots located in Grand Junction, Colorado and Waterflow, New Mexico are being used to study: (1) the interactions between vegetation and radon and biological barriers, (2) the effects of surface covers on soil moisture, and (3) the effects of rock covers on vegetation.

  14. Assessment of cover systems at the Grand Junction, Colorado, uranium mill tailings pile: 1987 field measurements

    SciTech Connect

    Gee, G.W.; Campbell, M.D.; Freeman, H.D.; Cline, J.F.

    1989-02-01

    Four Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL) scientists and a technician conducted an onsite evaluation of radon gas exhalation, water content profiles, and plant and animal intrusion for a series of cover systems located on the uranium mill tailings pile at Grand Junction, Colorado. These six plots were sampled extensively down to the radon control layer (e.g., asphalt or wet clay) for soil moisture content and permeability. Radon gas emission through the surface was measured. Soil samples were collected and analyzed in the lab for particle-size distribution, particle density, bulk density, and ambient water content. Prairie dog burrows were excavated to discover the extent to which they penetrated the barriers. Plant type, density, and cover characteristics were measured.

  15. Engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings, Green River Site, Green River, Utah

    SciTech Connect

    1981-08-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah Inc. has reevaluated the Green River site in order to revise the December 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings at Green River, Utah. This evaluation has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative remedial actions. Radon gas released from the 123,000 tons of tailings at the Green River site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors.

  16. US Geological Survey research on the environmental fate of uranium mining and milling wastes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Landa, E.R.; Gray, J.R.

    1995-01-01

    Studies by the US Geological Survey (USGS) of uranium mill tailings (UMT) have focused on characterizing the forms in which radionuclides are retained and identifying factors influencing the release of radionuclides to air and water. Selective extraction studies and studies of radionuclide sorption by and leaching from components of UMT showed alkaline earth sulfate and hydrous ferric oxides to be important hosts of radium-226 (226Ra) in UMT. Extrapolating from studies of barite dissolution in anerobic lake sediments, the leaching of 226Ra from UMT by sulfate-reducing bacteria was investigated; a marked increase in 226Ra release to aqueous solution as compared to sterile controls was demonstrated. A similar action of iron(III)-reducing bacteria was later shown. Ion exchangers such as clay minerals can also promote the dissolution of host-phase minerals and thereby influence the fate of radionuclides such as 226Ra. Radon release studies examined particle size and ore composition as variables. Aggregation of UMT particles was shown to mask the higher emanating fraction of finer particles. Studies of various ores and ore components showed that UMT cannot be assumed to have the same radon-release characteristics as their precursor ores, nor can 226Ra retained by various substrates be assumed to emanate the same fraction of radon. Over the last decade, USGS research directed at offsite mobility of radionuclides from uranium mining and milling processes has focused on six areas: the Midnite Mine in Washington; Ralston Creek and Reservoir, Colorado; sites near Canon City, Colorado; the Monument Valley District of Arizona and Utah; the Cameron District of Arizona; and the Puerco River basin of Arizona and New Mexico.

  17. Summary of the engineering assessment of inactive uranium-mill tailings: Canonsburg Site, Canonsburg, Pennsylvania

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1982-04-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah Inc. has evaluated the Canonsburg site in order to assess the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive residues at Canonsburg, Pennsylvania. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative remedial actions. Radon gas released from the approximately 300,000 tons of tailings and contaminated soil at the Canonsburg site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors. The four alternative actions presented in this engineering assessment range from millsite and off-site decontamination with the addition of 3 m of stabilization cover material (Option I), to removal of the tailings and contaminated materials to a remote disposal site and decontamination of the Canonsburg site (Options II through IV). Cost estimates for the four options range from $23,244,000 for stabilization in-place, to $27,052,000 for disposal at a distance of about 17 mi. Three principal alternatives for the reprocessing of the Canonsburg tailings were examined: heap leaching; treatment at an existing mill; and reprocessing at a new conventional mill constructed for tailings reprocessing. As required by Public Law 95-604, under whose auspices this project is conducted, the US Department of Energy has solicited expressions of interest in reprocessing the tailings and residues at the Canonsburg site for uranium recovery. Since no such interest was demonstrated, no effort has been made to estimate the value of the residual uranium resource at the Canonsburg site.

  18. Environmental assessment of remedial action at the Lowman Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Lowman, Idaho. Final

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-01-01

    This document assesses the environmental impacts of stabilization on site of the contaminated materials at the Lowman uranium mill tailings site. The Lowman site is 0.5 road mile northeast of the unincorporated village of Lowman, Idaho, and 73 road miles from Boise, Idaho. The Lowman site consists of piles of radioactive sands, an ore storage area, abandoned mill buildings, and windblown/waterborne contaminated areas. A total of 29.5 acres of land are contaminated and most of this land occurs within the 35-acre designated site boundary. The proposed action is to stabilize the tailings and other contaminated materials on the site. A radon barrier would be constructed over the consolidated residual radioactive materials and various erosion control measures would be implemented to ensure the long-term stability of the disposal cell. Radioactive constituents and other hazardous constituents were not detected in the groundwater beneath the Lowman site. The groundwater beneath the disposal cell would not become contaminated during or after remedial action so the maximum concentration limits or background concentrations for the contaminants listed in the draft EPA groundwater protection standards would be met at the point of compliance. No significant impacts were identified as a result of the proposed remedial action at the Lowman site.

  19. Engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings: Lakeview site, Lakeview, Oregon

    SciTech Connect

    1981-10-01

    This assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors. The three alternative actions presented in this engineering assessment include millsite decontamination with the addition of 3 m of stabilization cover material (Option I) and removal of the tailings to remote disposal sites and decontamination of the tailings site (Options II and III). Cost estimates range from about $6,000,000 for stabilization in-place, to about $7,500,000 for disposal at a distance of about 10 miles. Three alternatives for reprocessing the Lakeview tailings were examined: heap leaching, treatment at an existing mill, and reprocessing at a new conventional mill. The cost of the uranium recovered would be over $450/lb of U/sub 3/O/sub 8/ and hence reprocessing is not economical.

  20. Laboratory evaluation of limestone and lime neutralization of acidic uranium mill tailings solution. Progress report

    SciTech Connect

    Opitz, B.E.; Dodson, M.E.; Serne, R.J.

    1984-02-01

    Experiments were conducted to evaluate a two-step neutralization scheme for treatment of acidic uranium mill tailings solutions. Tailings solutions from the Lucky Mc Mill and Exxon Highland Mill, both in Wyoming, were neutralized with limestone, CaCO/sub 3/, to an intermediate pH of 4.0 or 5.0, followed by lime, Ca(OH)/sub 2/, neutralization to pH 7.3. The combination limestone/lime treatment methods, CaCO/sub 3/ neutralization to pH 4 followed by neutralization with Ca(OH)/sub 2/ to pH 7.3 resulted in the highest quality effluent solution with respect to EPA's water quality guidelines. The combination method is the most cost-effective treatment procedure tested in our studies. Neutralization experiments to evaluate the optimum solution pH for contaminant removal were performed on the same two tailings solutions using only lime Ca(OH)/sub 2/ as the neutralizing agent. The data indicate solution neutralization above pH 7.3 does not significantly increase removal of pH dependent contaminants from solution. Column leaching experiments were performed on the neutralized sludge material (the precipitated solid material which forms as the acidic tailings solutions are neutralized to pH 4 or above). The sludges were contacted with laboratory prepared synthetic ground water until several effluent pore volumes were collected. Effluent solutions were analyzed for macro ions, trace metals and radionuclides in an effort to evaluate the long term effectiveness of attenuating contaminants in sludges formed during solution neutralization. Neutralized sludge leaching experiments indicate that Ca, Na, Mg, Se, Cl, and SO/sub 4/ are the only constituents which show solution concentrations significantly higher than the synthetic ground water in the early pore volumes of long-term leaching studies.

  1. Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project, fiscal year 1995 annual report to stakeholders

    SciTech Connect

    1995-09-30

    In 1978, Congress authorized the DOE to assess and clean up contamination at 24 designated former uranium processing sites. The DOE is also responsible for cleaning up properties in the vicinity of the sites where wind and water erosion deposited tailings or people removed them from the site for use in construction or landscaping projects. Cleanup is being undertaken in cooperation with state governments and Indian tribes within whose boundaries the sites are located. It is being conducted in two phases: the surface project and the ground water project. This report addresses specifics about both phases of the UMTRA Project. DOE`s UMTRA Project is the world`s largest materials management project ever undertaken to reduce or eliminate risk to the general public from exposure to potentially hazardous and radioactive materials. With an estimated cost at completion of nearly $2 billion for both phases of the UMTRA Project, and with the responsibility for encapsulating and isolating almost one-fourth of all the uranium mill tailings generated across the entire US (more than 44 million cubic yards), the UMTRA Project and its people have achieved a long record of safely and effectively completing its mission. It continually enhances its national reputation through its diligent process and cost efficiency as well as its international recognition for its technological innovation.

  2. Regulatory Oversight of the Legacy Gunner Uranium Mine and Mill Site in Northern Saskatchewan, Canada - 13434

    SciTech Connect

    Stenson, Ron; Howard, Don

    2013-07-01

    As Canada's nuclear regulator, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) is responsible for licensing all aspects of uranium mining, including remediation activities at legacy sites. Since these sites already existed when the current legislation came into force in 2000, and the previous legislation did not apply, they present a special case. The Nuclear Safety and Control Act (NSCA), was written with cradle-to- grave oversight in mind. Applying the NSCA at the end of a 'facilities' life-cycle poses some challenges to both the regulator and the proponent. When the proponent is the public sector, even more challenges can present themselves. Although the licensing process for legacy sites is no different than for any other CNSC license, assuring regulatory compliance can be more complicated. To demonstrate how the CNSC has approached the oversight of legacy sites the history of the Commission's involvement with the Gunnar uranium mine and mill site provides a good case study. The lessons learned from the CNSC's experience regulating the Gunnar site will benefit those in the future who will need to regulate legacy sites under existing or new legislation. (authors)

  3. Swimming performance and energy homeostasis in juvenile laboratory raised fathead minnow (Pimephales promelas) exposed to uranium mill effluent.

    PubMed

    Goertzen, Meghan M; Driessnack, Melissa K; Janz, David M; Weber, Lynn P

    2011-11-01

    Research at the Key Lake uranium mill (Saskatchewan, Canada) suggests effluent discharged from the mill affects energy stores of resident fish, but the mechanisms by which energy homeostasis is affected and the subsequent effects on swimming performance are unknown. In the present study larvae were collected from laboratory raised adult fathead minnow (Pimephales promelas) exposed to 5% diluted uranium mill effluent or control (dechlorinated municipal) water, and reared in the same treatments to 60 days post hatch (dph). Critical swimming speed (U(crit)) was significantly lower in effluent exposed 60 dph fish compared to control fish. Fish used in tests were considered fatigued and compared to fish without swim testing (non-fatigued). There were no differences in whole body glycogen or triglyceride concentrations between effluent exposed versus control fish. However, fatigued fish from both treatments had significantly lower triglycerides, but not glycogen, compared to non-fatigued fish from the same treatment. Whole body β-hydroxyacyl coenzymeA dehydrogenase activity was similar in fish from both treatments, but citrate synthase activity was significantly lower in effluent exposed fish. Our results suggest uranium mill effluent exposure in the laboratory affects aerobic energy metabolism and swimming performance in juvenile fathead minnow, which could affect wild fish survivability. PMID:21839854

  4. Radio-Ecological Conditions of Groundwater in the Area of Uranium Mining and Milling Facility - 13525

    SciTech Connect

    Titov, A.V.; Semenova, M.P.; Seregin, V.A.; Isaev, D.V.; Metlyaev, E.G.; Glagolev, A.V.; Klimova, T.I.; Sevtinova, E.B.; Zolotukhina, S.B.; Zhuravleva, L.A.

    2013-07-01

    Manmade chemical and radioactive contamination of groundwater is one of damaging effects of the uranium mining and milling facilities. Groundwater contamination is of special importance for the area of Priargun Production Mining and Chemical Association, JSC 'PPMCA', because groundwater is the only source of drinking water. The paper describes natural conditions of the site, provides information on changes of near-surface area since the beginning of the company, illustrates the main trends of contaminators migration and assesses manmade impact on the quality and mode of near-surface and ground waters. The paper also provides the results of chemical and radioactive measurements in groundwater at various distances from the sources of manmade contamination to the drinking water supply areas. We show that development of deposits, mine water discharge, leakages from tailing dams and cinder storage facility changed general hydro-chemical balance of the area, contributed to new (overlaid) aureoles and flows of scattering paragenetic uranium elements, which are much smaller in comparison with natural ones. However, increasing flow of groundwater stream at the mouth of Sukhoi Urulyungui due to technological water infiltration, mixing of natural water with filtration streams from industrial reservoirs and sites, containing elevated (relative to natural background) levels of sulfate-, hydro-carbonate and carbonate- ions, led to the development and moving of the uranium contamination aureole from the undeveloped field 'Polevoye' to the water inlet area. The aureole front crossed the southern border of water inlet of drinking purpose. The qualitative composition of groundwater, especially in the southern part of water inlet, steadily changes for the worse. The current Russian intervention levels of gross alpha activity and of some natural radionuclides including {sup 222}Rn are in excess in drinking water; regulations for fluorine and manganese concentrations are also in excess

  5. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the uranium mill tailings site near Falls City, Texas: Revision 1

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-09-01

    This baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination of the uranium mill tailings site near Falls City, Texas, evaluates potential impact to public health and the environment resulting from ground water contamination at the former Susquehanna Western, Inc. (SWI), uranium mill processing site. This document fulfills the following objectives: determine if the site presents immediate or potential future health risks, determine the need for interim institutional controls, serve as a key input to project planning and prioritization, and recommend future data collection efforts to more fully characterize risk. The Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project has begun its evaluation of ground water contamination at the Falls City site. This risk assessment is one of the first documents specific to this site for the Ground Water Project. The first step is to evaluate ground water data collected from monitor wells at or near the site. Evaluation of these data show the main contaminants in the Dilworth ground water are cadmium, cobalt, fluoride, iron, nickel, sulfate, and uranium. The data also show high levels of arsenic and manganese occur naturally in some areas.

  6. Remedial action and site design for stabilization of the inactive uranium mill tailings sites at Slick Rock, Colorado. Attachment 3, Groundwater hydrology report

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1993-07-01

    The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has established health and environmental protection regulations to correct and prevent groundwater contamination resulting from processing activities at inactive uranium milling sites (EPA, 1987). According to the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act (UMTRCA) of 1978 Public Law (PL) 95-604 (PL 95-604), the US Department of Energy (DOE) is responsible for assessing the inactive uranium processing sites. The DOE has determined that for Slick Rock, this assessment shall include hydrogeologic site characterization for two separate uranium processing sites, the Union Carbide (UC) site and the North Continent (NC) site, and for the proposed Burro Canyon disposal site.

  7. Comment and response document on the final remedial action plan and site design for stabilization of the inactive Uranium Mill Tailings Site at Lakeview, Oregon

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-10-01

    This report contains comments provided by the Oregon Department of Energy and responses to these comments on the final remedial action plan for the inactive uranium mill tailings site at Lakeview, Oregon.

  8. Contaminant distributions at typical U.S. uranium milling facilities and their effect on remedial action decisions

    SciTech Connect

    Hamp, S.; Jackson, T.J.; Dotson, P.W.

    1995-03-01

    Past operations at uranium processing sites throughout the US have resulted in local contamination of soils and ground water by radionuclides, toxic metals, or both. Understanding the origin of contamination and how the constituents are distributed is a basic element for planning remedial action decisions. This report describes the radiological and nonradiological species found in ground water at a typical US uranium milling facility. The report will provide the audience with an understanding of the vast spectrum of contaminants that must be controlled in planning solutions to the long-term management of these waste materials.

  9. Extraction of uranium and molybdenum from aqueous solutions: A survey of industrial materials for use in chemical barriers for uranium mill tailings remediation

    SciTech Connect

    Morrison, S.J.; Spangler, R.R. )

    1992-10-01

    Laboratory experiments were performed to simulate the interaction of contaminated pore fluids with a variety of industrial materials. The objective was to evaluate the materials for use in a chemical barrier under a repository containing uranium mill tailings. Pore water would pass through the barrier, but contaminants would remain fixed in the solid fraction. More than 99% of the dissolved uranium in a synthetic pore fluid (initial uranium concentration of 30.0 mg/L) was extracted by the addition of hydrated lime, fly ash, barium chloride, calcium phosphate, titanium oxide, peat, and lignite. More than 96% of the molybdenum (initial molybdenum concentration of 8.9 mg/L) was extracted by ferrous sulfate, ferric oxyhydroxide, titanium oxide, peat, hematite, calcium chloride, and barium chloride. Some materials were effective only for a limited range of pH values. Extraction was caused by both precipitation (as calcium uranate, calcium molybdate, ferrous molybdate, or barium molybdate) and sorption (on ferric oxyhydroxide, hematite, calcium phosphate, peat, or titanium oxide). Chemicals that precipitate contaminant-bearing minerals are able to control solution chemistry and, therefore, have an advantage over sorbents which are subject to externally determined solution variables such as pH. On the basis of the predicted flux of pore fluid from the Monticello (Utah) uranium mill tailings, some industrial materials may be suitable for a chemical barrier at that site. 37 refs., 6 figs., 6 tabs.

  10. Comment and response document for the ground water protection strategy for the Uranium Mill Tailings Site at Green River, Utah

    SciTech Connect

    1995-09-01

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) responses to comments from both the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and the state of Utah are provided in this document. The Proposed Ground Water Protection Strategy for the Uranium Mill Tailings Site at Green River, Utah, presents the proposed (modified) ground water protection strategy for the disposal cell at the Green River disposal site for compliance with Subpart A of 40 CFR Part 192. Before the disposal cell was constructed, site characterization was conducted at the Green River Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project site to determine an acceptable compliance strategy. Results of the investigation are reported in detail in the final remedial action plan (RAP) (DOE, 1991a). The NRC and the state of Utah have accepted the final RAP. The changes in this document relate only to a modification of the compliance strategy for ground water protection.

  11. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the Monument Valley Uranium Mill Tailings Site, Cane Valley, Arizona. Revision 1

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-08-01

    This baseline risk assessment evaluates potential impact to public health or the environment from ground water contamination at the former uranium mill processing site in Cane Valley near Monument Valley, Arizona. The US Department of Energy (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project has relocated and stabilized this site`s tailings and other contaminated material in a disposal cell at Mexican Hat, Utah. The second phase of the UMTRA Project is to evaluate ground water contamination. This risk assessment is the first document specific to this site for the Ground Water Project that evaluates potential health and environmental risks. It will help determine the approach required to address contaminated ground water at the site.

  12. Baseline risk assessment for groundwater contamination at the uranium mill tailings site near Monument Valley, Arizona. Draft

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1993-09-01

    This baseline risk assessment evaluates potential impact to public health or the environment resulting from groundwater contamination at the former uranium mill processing site near Monument Valley, Arizona. The tailings and other contaminated material at this site are being relocated and stabilized in a disposal cell at Mexican Hat, Utah, through the US Department of Energy (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. The tailings removal is planned for completion by spring 1994. After the tailings are removed, groundwater contamination at the site will continue to be evaluated. This risk assessment is the first document specific to this site for the Groundwater Project. It will be used to assist in determining what remedial action is needed for contaminated groundwater at the site.

  13. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site at Grand Junction, Colorado. Revision 1

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-09-01

    This risk assessment evaluates potential impacts to public health or the environment resulting from ground water contamination at the former uranium mill processing site. The tailings and other contaminated material at this site were placed in an off-site disposal cell by the US Department of Energy`s (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. The remedial activities at the site were conducted from 1989 to 1993. Currently, the UMTRA Project is evaluating ground water contamination. This risk assessment evaluates the most contaminated ground water that flows beneath the processing site toward the Colorado River. The monitor wells that have consistently shown the highest concentrations of most contaminants are used to assess risk. This risk assessment will be used in conjunction with additional activities and documents to determine what remedial action may be needed for contaminated ground water at the site.

  14. Environmental assessment of remedial action at the Slick Rock uranium mill tailings sites Slick Rock, Colorado. Draft

    SciTech Connect

    1993-06-01

    The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 (UMTRCA) authorized the US Department of Energy (DOE) to clean up two uranium mill tailings processing sites near Slick Rock, Colorado, in San Miguel County. The purpose of the cleanup is to reduce the potential health effects associated with the radioactive materials remaining on the sites and on vicinity properties (VP) associated with the sites. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) promulgated standards for the UMTRCA that contained measures to control the contaminated materials and to protect the groundwater from further degradation. Remedial actions at the Slick Rock sites must be performed in accordance with these standards and with the concurrence of the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).

  15. Radium-226 in vegetation and substrates at inactive uranium mill sites

    SciTech Connect

    Marple, M.L.

    1980-01-01

    Results of a study of the content of radium-226 in plants growing on inactive uranium mill tailings sites in the Four Corners Region of the southwestern United States and in plants grown under greenhouse conditions with minimal surficial contamination are reported. Field plant samples and associated substrates were analyzed from two carbonate tailings sites in the Grants Mineral Belt of New Mexico. Radium activities in air-cleaned samples ranged from 5 to 368 pCi/g (dry weight) depending on species and location: activities in plants growing on local soils averaged 1.0 pCi/g. The talings and local soils contain 140 to 1400 pCi/g and 2.1 pCi/g, respectively. An evaluation of cleaning methods on selected samples showed that from 17 to 79% of the radium activity measured in air-cleaned samples was due to surficial contamination, which varied with species and location. A survey of 18 inactive uranium mill sites in the Four Corners Region was performed. Radium activity in plant tissues from nine species ranged from 2 to 210 pCi/g on bare tailings and from 0.3 to 30 pCi/g on covered tailings The radium content in most of the soil overburdens on the covered tailings piles was 10 to 17 pCi/g. An experiment was performed to measure radium-226 uptake by two species grown on tailings covered with a shallow (5 cm) soil layer. A grass, Sporobolus airoides (alkali sacaton) and a shrub, Atriplex canescens (four-wing saltbush), were studied. The tailings were a mixture of sands and slimes from a carbonate pile. The tailings treatments were plants grown in a soil cover over tailings; the controls were plants grown only in soil. Three soil types, dune sand, clay loam, and loam, were used. The radium activity of the plant tissue from the tailings treatment compared to that of the appropriate control was 1 to 19 times greater for the grass and 4 to 27 times greater for the shrub.

  16. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Sites near Slick Rock, Colorado. Revision 1

    SciTech Connect

    1995-09-01

    Two UMTRA (Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action) Project sites are near Slick Rock, Colorado: the North Continent site and the Union Carbide site. Currently, no one uses the contaminated ground water at either site for domestic or agricultural purposes. However, there may be future land development. This risk assessment evaluates possible future health problems associated with exposure to contaminated ground water. Since some health problems could occur, it is recommended that the contaminated ground water not be used as drinking water.

  17. Rock riprap design methods and their applicability to long-term protection of uranium mill tailings impoundments

    SciTech Connect

    Walters, W.H.

    1982-08-01

    This report reviews the more accepted or recommended riprap design methods currently used to design rock riprap protection against soil erosion by flowing water. The basic theories used to develop the various methods are presented. The Riprap Design with Safety Factors Method is identified as the logical choice for uranium mill tailings impoundments. This method is compared to the other methods and its applicability to the protection requirements of tailings impoundments is discussed. Other design problems are identified and investigative studies recommended.

  18. Environmental assessment of remedial action at the Maybell uranium mill tailings site near Maybell, Colorado: Revision 2

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-11-01

    The purpose of this environmental assessment (EA) is to evaluate the environmental impacts resulting from remedial action at the Maybell uranium mill tailings site near Maybell, Colorado. A biological assessment and a floodplain/wetlands assessment are included as part of this EA. This report and attachments describe the proposed action, affected environment, and environmental impacts associated with the proposed remedial action, including impacts to threatened and endangered species listed or proposed for listing by the US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS).

  19. Environmental assessment of remedial action at the Maybell Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Maybell, Colorado. Revision 1

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-04-01

    The purpose of this environmental assessment (EA) is to evaluate the environmental impacts resulting from remedial action at the Maybell uranium mill tailings site near Maybell, Colorado. A biological assessment (Attachment 1) and a floodplain/wetlands attachments describe the proposed action, affected environment, and environmental impacts associated with the proposed remedial action, including impacts to threatened and endangered species listed or proposed for listing by the US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS).

  20. Post Audit of a Field Scale Reactive Transport Model of Uranium at a Former Mill Site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Curtis, G. P.

    2015-12-01

    Reactive transport of hexavalent uranium (U(VI)) in a shallow alluvial aquifer at a former uranium mill tailings site near Naturita CO has been monitored for nearly 30 years by the US Department of Energy and the US Geological Survey. Groundwater at the site has high concentrations of chloride, alkalinity and U(VI) as a owing to ore processing at the site from 1941 to 1974. We previously calibrated a multicomponent reactive transport model to data collected at the site from 1986 to 2001. A two dimensional nonreactive transport model used a uniform hydraulic conductivity which was estimated from observed chloride concentrations and tritium helium age dates. A reactive transport model for the 2km long site was developed by including an equilibrium U(VI) surface complexation model calibrated to laboratory data and calcite equilibrium. The calibrated model reproduced both nonreactive tracers as well as the observed U(VI), pH and alkalinity. Forward simulations for the period 2002-2015 conducted with the calibrated model predict significantly faster natural attenuation of U(VI) concentrations than has been observed by the persistent high U(VI) concentrations at the site. Alternative modeling approaches are being evaluating evaluated using recent data to determine if the persistence can be explained by multirate mass transfer models developed from experimental observations at the column scale(~0.2m), the laboratory tank scale (~2m), the field tracer test scale (~1-4m) or geophysical observation scale (~1-5m). Results of this comparison should provide insight into the persistence of U(VI) plumes and improved management options.

  1. Characterization of molybdenum interfacial crud in a uranium mill that employs tertiary-amine solvent extraction

    SciTech Connect

    Moyer, B.; McDowell, W.J.

    1983-01-01

    In the present work, samples of a molybdenum-caused green gummy interfacial crud from an operating western US uranium mill have been physically and chemically examined. Formaton of cruds of this description has been a long-standing problem in the use of tertiary amine solvent extraction for the recovery of uranium from low-grade ores (Amex Process). The crud is essentially an organic-continuous dispersion containing about 10 wt % aqueous droplets and about 37 wt % greenish-yellow crystalline solids suspended in kerosene-amine process solvent. The greenish-yellow crystals were found to be a previously unknown double salt of tertiary amine molybdophosphate with three tertiary amine chlorides having the empirical formula (R/sub 3/NH)/sub 3/(PMo/sub 12/O/sub 40/).3(R/sub 3/NH)Cl. To confirm the identification of the compound, a pure trioctylamine (TOA) analog was synthesized. In laboratory extraction experiments, it was demonstrated that organic-soluble amine molydophosphate forms slowly upon contact of TOA solvent with dilute sulfuric acid solutions containing low concentrations of molybdate and phosphate. If the organic solutions of amine molybdophosphate were then contacted with aqueous NaCl solutions, a greenish-yellow precipitate of (TOAH)/sub 3/(PMo/sub 12/O/sub 40/).3(TOAH)Cl formed at the interface. The proposed mechanism for the formation of the crud under process conditions involves build up of molybdenum in the solvent, followed by reaction with extracted phosphate to give dissolved amine molybdophosphate. The amine molybdophosphate then co-crystallizes with amine chloride, formed during the stripping cycle, to give the insoluble double salt, which precipitates as a layer of small particles at the interface. The proposed solution to the problem is the use of branched-chain, instead of straight-chain, tertiary amine extractants under the expectation that branching would increase the solubility of the double salt. 2 figures, 5 tables.

  2. Reconnaissance soil geochemistry at the Riverton Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Site, Fremont County, Wyoming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smith, David B.; Sweat, Michael J.

    2012-01-01

    Soil samples were collected and chemically analyzed from the Riverton Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Site, which lies within the Wind River Indian Reservation in Fremont County, Wyoming. Nineteen soil samples from a depth of 0 to 5 centimeters were collected in August 2011 from the site. The samples were sieved to less than 2 millimeters and analyzed for 44 major and trace elements following a near-total multi-acid extraction. Soil pH was also determined. The geochemical data were compared to a background dataset consisting of 160 soil samples previously collected from the same depth throughout the State of Wyoming as part of another ongoing study by the U.S. Geological Survey. Risk from potentially toxic elements in soil from the site to biologic receptors and humans was estimated by comparing the concentration of these elements with soil screening values established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. All 19 samples exceeded the carcinogenic human health screening level for arsenic in residential soils of 0.39 milligrams per kilogram (mg/kg), which represents a one-in-one-million cancer risk (median arsenic concentration in the study area is 2.7 mg/kg). All 19 samples also exceeded the lead and vanadium screening levels for birds. Eighteen of the 19 samples exceeded the manganese screening level for plants, 13 of the 19 samples exceeded the antimony screening level for mammals, and 10 of 19 samples exceeded the zinc screening level for birds. However, these exceedances are also found in soils at most locations in the Wyoming Statewide soil database, and elevated concentrations alone are not necessarily cause for alarm. Uranium and thorium, two other elements of environmental concern, are elevated in soils at the site as compared to the Wyoming dataset, but no human or ecological soil screening levels have been established for these elements.

  3. Characterization of Microbial Activities and U Reduction in a Shallow Aquifer Contaminated by Uranium Mill Tailing

    SciTech Connect

    Elias, Dwayne A.; Krumholz, Lee R.; Wong, D; Long, Philip E.; Suflita, Joseph M.

    2003-05-21

    A Characterization of the Shiprock, NM, uranium mill tailing site focused on the geochemical and microbiological factors governing in-situ uranium-redox reactions. Groundwater and aqueous extracts of sediment samples contained a wide concentration range of sulfate, nitrate, and U(VI) with median values of 21.2 mM, 16.1um, and 2.7 um, respectively. Iron (III) was not detected in groundwater, but a median value of 0.3 mM in sediment extracts was measured. Bacterial diversity down gradient from the disposal pile reflected the predominant geochemistry with relatively high numbers of sulfate-and nitrate-reducing microorganisms, and smaller numbers of acetogenic, methanogenic, nitrate-dependent Fe(II)-oxidizing, Fe(III)-reducing, and sulfide oxidizing bacteria. In aquifer slurry incubations, nitrate reduction was always preferred and had a negative impact on sulfate-, Fe(III)-, and U-reduction rates. We also found that sulfate-reduction rates decreased sharply in the presence of clay, while Fe(III)-reduction increased with no clear impact on U reduction. In the absence of clay, iron and sulfate reduction correlated with concentrations of Fe(III) and sulfate, respectively. Rates of U(VI) loss did not correlate with the concentration of any electron acceptor. With the exception of Fe(III), electron donor amendment was largely unsuccessful in stimulating electron acceptor loss over a 1-week incubation period, suggesting that endogenous forms of organic matter were sufficient to support microbial activity. Our findings suggest that efforts to accelerate biological U reduction should initially focus on stimulating nitrate removal.

  4. 226Ra bioavailability to plants at the Urgeiriça uranium mill tailings site.

    PubMed

    Madruga, M J; Brogueira, A; Alberto, G; Cardoso, F

    2001-01-01

    Large amounts of solid wastes (tailings) resulting from the exploitation and treatment of uranium ore at the Urgeiriça mine (north of Portugal) have been accumulated in dams (tailing ponds). To reduce the dispersion of natural radionuclides into the environment, some dams were revegetated with eucalyptus (Eucalyptus globolus) and pines (Pinus pinea). Besides these plants, some shrubs (Cytisus spp.) are growing in some of the dams. The objective of this study is to determine the 226Ra bioavailability from uranium mill tailings by quantifying the total and available fraction of radium in the tailings and to estimate its transfer to plants growing on the tailing piles. Plant and tailing samples were randomly collected and the activity concentration of 226Ra in plants (aerial part and roots) and tailings was measured by gamma-spectrometry. The exchangeable fraction of radium in tailings was quantified using one single step extraction with 1 mol dm-3 ammonium acetate (pH = 7) or 1 mol dm-3 calcium chloride solutions. The results obtained for 226Ra uptake by plants show that 226Ra concentration ratios for eucalyptus and pines decrease at low 226Ra concentrations in the tailings and appear relatively constant at higher radium concentrations. For shrubs, the concentration ratios increase at higher 226Ra solid waste concentrations approaching a saturation value. Percentage values of 16.0 +/- 8.3 and 12.9 +/- 8.9, for the fraction of radium extracted from the tailings, using 1 mol dm-3 ammonium acetate or calcium chloride solutions, respectively, were obtained. The 226Ra concentration ratios determined on the basis of exchangeable radium are one order of magnitude higher than those based on total radium. It can be concluded that, at a 95% confidence level, more consistent 226Ra concentration ratios were obtained when calculated on the basis of available radium than when total radium was considered, for all the dams. PMID:11379070

  5. Biological assessment of remedial action at the abandoned uranium mill tailings site near Naturita, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    1996-03-01

    Pursuant to the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act (UMTRCA) of 1978, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is proposing to conduct remedial action to clean up the residual radioactive materials (RRM) at the Naturita uranium processing site in Colorado. The Naturita site is in Montrose County, Colorado, and is approximately 2 miles (mi) (3 kilometer [km]) from the unincorporated town of Naturita. The proposed remedial action is to remove the RRM from the Naturita site to the Upper Burbank Quarry at the Uravan disposal site. To address the potential impacts of the remedial action on threatened and endangered species, the DOE prepared this biological assessment. Informal consultations with the U.S. Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) were initiated in 1986, and the FWS provided a list of the threatened and endangered species that may occur in the Naturita study area. This list was updated by two FWS letters in 1988 and by verbal communication in 1990. A biological assessment was included in the environmental assessment (EA) of the proposed remedial action that was prepared in 1990. This EA addressed the impacts of moving the Naturita RRM to the Dry Flats disposal site. In 1993, the design for the Dry Flats disposal alternative was changed. The FWS was again consulted in 1993 and provided a new list of threatened and endangered species that may occur in the Naturita study area. The Naturita EA and the biological assessment were revised in response to these changes. In 1994, remedial action was delayed because an alternate disposal site was being considered. The DOE decided to move the FIRM at the Naturita site to the Upper Burbank Quarry at the Uravan site. Due to this delay, the FWS was consulted in 1995 and a list of threatened and endangered species was provided. This biological assessment is a revision of the assessment attached to the Naturita EA and addresses moving the Naturita RRM to the Upper Burbank Quarry disposal site.

  6. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Shiprock, New Mexico. Revision 1

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-04-01

    This baseline risk assessment at the former uranium mill tailings site near Shiprock, New Mexico, evaluates the potential impact to public health or the environment resulting from ground water contamination at the former uranium mill processing site. The tailings and other contaminated material at this site were placed in an on-site disposal cell in 1986 through the US Department of Energy (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. Currently, the UMTRA Project is evaluating ground water contamination. This risk assessment is the first document specific to this site for the Ground Water Project. There are no domestic or drinking water wells in the contaminated ground water of the two distinct ground water units: the contaminated ground water in the San Juan River floodplain alluvium below the site and the contaminated ground water in the terrace alluvium area where the disposal cell is located. Because no one is drinking the affected ground water, there are currently no health or environmental risks directly associated with the contaminated ground water. However, there is a potential for humans, domestic animals, and wildlife to the exposed to surface expressions of ground water in the seeps and pools in the area of the San Juan River floodplain below the site. For these reasons, this risk assessment evaluates potential exposure to contaminated surface water and seeps as well as potential future use of contaminated ground water.

  7. Baseline risk assessment of groundwater contamination at the uranium mill tailings site near Shiprock, New Mexico. Draft

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1993-09-01

    This report evaluates potential impact to public health or the environment resulting from groundwater contamination at the former uranium mill processing site. The tailings and other contaminated material at this site were placed in a disposal cell on the site in 1986 by the US Department of Energy`s (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. Currently, the UMTRA Project is evaluating groundwater contamination. This risk assessment is the first document specific to this site for the Groundwater Project. This risk assessment follows the approach outlined by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The first step is to evaluate groundwater data collected from monitor wells at the site. Evaluation of these data showed that the main contaminants in the floodplain groundwater are arsenic, magnesium, manganese, nitrate, sodium, sulfate, and uranium. The complete list of contaminants associated with the terrace groundwater could not be determined due to the lack of the background groundwater quality data. However, uranium, nitrate, and sulfate are evaluated since these chemicals are clearly associated with uranium processing and are highly elevated compared to regional waters. It also could not be determined if the groundwater occurring in the terrace is a usable water resource, since it appears to have originated largely from past milling operations. The next step in the risk assessment is to estimate how much of these contaminants people would be exposed to if a drinking well were installed in the contaminated groundwater or if there were exposure to surface expressions of contaminated water. Potential exposures to surface water include incidental contact with contaminated water or sediments by children playing on the floodplain and consumption of meat and milk from domestic animals grazed and watered on the floodplain.

  8. Baseline risk assessment of groundwater contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Gunnison, Colorado. Revision 1

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-04-01

    This report evaluates potential impacts to public health or the environment resulting from groundwater contamination at the former uranium mill processing site. The tailings and other contaminated material at this site are being placed in an off-site disposal cell by the US Department of Energy`s (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. Currently, the UMTRA Project is evaluating groundwater contamination. This is the second risk assessment of groundwater contamination at this site. The first risk assessment was performed primarily to evaluate existing domestic wells to determine the potential for immediate human health and environmental impacts. This risk assessment evaluates the most contaminated groundwater that flows beneath the processing site towards the Gunnison River. The monitor wells that have consistently shown the highest concentration of most contaminants are used in this risk assessment. This risk assessment will be used in conjunction with additional activities and documents to assist in determining what remedial action is needed for contaminated groundwater at the site after the tailings are relocated. This risk assessment follows an approach outlined by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The first step is to evaluate groundwater data collected from monitor wells at the site. Evaluation of these data showed that the main contaminants in the groundwater are cadmium, cobalt, iron, manganese, sulfate, uranium, and some of the products of radioactive decay of uranium.

  9. Mathematical simulation of contaminant distribution in and around the uranium mill tailing piles, Riverton, Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    Narasimhan, T.N.; Tokunaga, T.; White, A.F.; Smith, A.R.

    1983-02-01

    As part of the Research and Development phase of the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) program, the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory (LBL) has set itself the goal of explaining the physico-chemical evolution of the Riverton site on the basis of the already collected field data at the site (Tokunaga and Narasimhan, 1982, Smith and Moed, 1982; White et al., 1984). The predictive aspects as well as addressing the question of critical quantity of field data have to be considered during the design phase of the project as a joint effort between the LBL team and the construction engineers. At the present time, LBL is in the process of completing the Research and Development phase of the work. As of this writing, the development of an appropriate set of mathematical models has been completed. The computations of the soil-water regime at the upper tailings surface, involving climatological factors is nearing completion. Computations of chemical transport are still in progress. This paper is devoted to a description of the key mathematical issues, the mathematical models that are needed to address these issues and a discussion of the model results pertaining to the soil water regime at the tailings-atmosphere interface. 11 references, 3 figures.

  10. Survivability of ancient man-made earthen mounds: implications for uranium mill tailings impoundments

    SciTech Connect

    Lindsey, C.G.; Mishima, J.; King, S.E.; Walters, W.H.

    1983-06-01

    As part of a study for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), the Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL) is investigating long-term stabilization techniques for uranium mill impoundments. Part of this investigation involves the design of a rock armoring blanket (riprap) to mitigate wind and water erosion of the underlying soil cover, which in turn prevents exposure of the tailings to the environment. However, the need for the armoring blanket, as well as the blanket's effectiveness, depends on the stability of the underlying soil cap (radon suppression cover) and on the tailings themselves. Compelling evidence in archaeological records suggests that large man-made earthen structures can remain sound and intact for time periods comparable to those required for the stabilization of the tailings piles if properly constructed. We present archaeological evidence on the existence and survivability of man-made earthen and rock structures through specific examples of such structures from around the world. We also review factors contributing to their survival or destruction and address the influence of climate, building materials, and construction techniques on survivability.

  11. Engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings, Spook site, Converse County, Wyoming

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1981-10-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah Inc. has reevaluated the Spook site in order to revise the December 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings 48 mi northeast of Casper, in Converse County, Wyoming. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 187,000 tons of tailings at the Spook site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors. The four alternative actions presented in this engineering assessment range from millsite decontamination with the addition of 3 m of stabilization cover makes and gamma densitometers for measuring cross-sectionally averaged mass velocity in steady steam-water flow are presented. The results are interpreted ntation.

  12. Analysis of BIOMOVS II Uranium Mill Tailings scenario 1.07 with the RESRAD computer code

    SciTech Connect

    Gnanapragasam, E.K.; Yu, C.

    1997-08-01

    The residual radioactive material guidelines (RESRAD) computer code developed at Argonne National Laboratory was selected for participation in the model intercomparison test scenario, version 1.07, conducted by the Uranium Mill Tailings Working Group in the second phase of the international Biospheric Model Validation Study. The RESRAD code was enhanced to provide an output attributing radiological dose to the nuclide at the point of exposure, in addition to the existing output attributing radiological dose to the nuclide in the contaminated zone. A conceptual model to account for off-site accumulation following atmospheric deposition was developed and showed the importance of considering this process for this off-site scenario. The RESRAD predictions for the atmospheric release compared well with most of the other models. The peak and steady-state doses and concentrations predicted by RESRAD for the groundwater release also agreed well with most of the other models participating in the study; however, the RESRAD plots shows a later breakthrough time and sharp changes compared with the plots of the predictions of other models. These differences were due to differences in the formulation for the retardation factor and to not considering the effects of longitudinal dispersion.

  13. Radiological survey of the inactive uranium-mill tailings at Lakeview, Oregon

    SciTech Connect

    Haywood, F.F.; Burden, J.E.; Ellis, B.S.; Loy, E.T.; Shinpaugh, W.H.

    1980-06-01

    The results of the radiological survey of the inactive uranium-mill site at Lakeview, Oregon, show that the average gamma-ray exposure rate 1 m above the tailings pile and the evaporation pond area (now dry) is close to the average background level for the area (11 ..mu..R/hr). The /sup 226/Ra concentration in most of the surface soil and sediment samples is also at or below the average background value for surface soil samples in the area (0.8 pCi/g). Calculated /sup 226/Ra concentrations, based on gamma radiation measurements in shallow (1-m-deep) holes, are in agreement with the results of surface soil and sediment analyses and with gamma-ray exposure rate measurements. The tailings at this site have been stabilized by the addition of 46 to 60 cm (18 to 24 in.) of soil that supports vigorous growth of vegetation. This treatment, coupled with a low-level inventory of /sup 226/Ra in the tailings (50 Ci), has resulted in limited spread of tailings by wind and water.

  14. Groundwater protection management program plan. [Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-06-01

    US Department of Energy (DOE) Order 5400.1 requires the establishment of a groundwater protection management program to ensure compliance with DOE requirements and applicable Federal, state, and local laws and regulations. The Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project Office has prepared a Groundwater Protection Management Program Plan'' (groundwater protection plan) of sufficient scope and detail to reflect the program's significance and address the seven activities required in DOE Order 5400.1, Chapter 3, for special program planning. The groundwater protection plan highlights the methods designed to preserve, protect, and monitor groundwater resources at UMTRA Project processing and disposal sites. The plan includes an overview of the remedial action status at the 24 designated processing sites and identifies project technical guidance documents and site-specific documents for the UMTRA groundwater protection management program. In addition, the groundwater protection plan addresses the general information required to develop a water resources protection strategy at the permanent disposal sites. Finally, the plan describes ongoing activities that are in various stages of development at UMTRA sites (long-term care at disposal sites and groundwater restoration at processing sites). This plan will be reviewed annually and updated every 3 years in accordance with DOE Order 5400.1.

  15. Selenium accumulation and reproduction in birds breeding downstream of a uranium mill in northern Saskatchewan, Canada.

    PubMed

    Weech, Shari A; Scheuhammer, Anton M; Wayland, Mark E

    2012-01-01

    Selenium (Se) concentrations in aquatic invertebrates and bird eggs collected along the treated effluent receiving environment of the Key Lake uranium mill in northern Saskatchewan were significantly greater than from nearby reference areas, and in some cases (e.g., eggs of common loons--Gavia immer) were higher than commonly used thresholds for adverse reproductive effects in birds (i.e., 5 μg/g dry weight in diet; 12-15 μg/g dry weight in eggs). Mean Se concentrations in tree swallow (Tachycineta bicolor) eggs reached a maximum of 13.3 μg/g dry weight at the point of treated effluent discharge and exhibited a gradient of decreasing Se concentrations with increasing distance from the effluent discharge, probably reflecting both effluent dilution and local site fidelity by nesting swallows. In some cases, high intra-clutch variability in Se concentrations in mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) and tree swallow eggs was observed in high-Se sites, suggesting that a single egg randomly sampled from a nest in an area of higher Se exposure may not be representative of Se concentrations in other eggs from the same nest. Overall, tree swallow reproductive success was similar in both exposed and reference areas. PMID:21927945

  16. Assessment of potential migration of radionuclides and trace elements from the White Mesa uranium mill to the Ute Mountain Ute Reservation and surrounding areas, southeastern Utah

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Naftz, David L.; Ranalli, Anthony J.; Rowland, Ryan C.; Marston, Thomas M.

    2011-01-01

    In 2007, the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe requested that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Geological Survey conduct an independent evaluation of potential offsite migration of radionuclides and selected trace elements associated with the ore storage and milling process at an active uranium mill site near White Mesa, Utah. Specific objectives of this study were (1) to determine recharge sources and residence times of groundwater surrounding the mill site, (2) to determine the current concentrations of uranium and associated trace elements in groundwater surrounding the mill site, (3) to differentiate natural and anthropogenic contaminant sources to groundwater resources surrounding the mill site, (4) to assess the solubility and potential for offsite transport of uranium-bearing minerals in groundwater surrounding the mill site, and (5) to use stream sediment and plant material samples from areas surrounding the mill site to identify potential areas of offsite contamination and likely contaminant sources. The results of age-dating methods and an evaluation of groundwater recharge temperatures using dissolved-gas samples indicate that groundwater sampled in wells in the surficial aquifer in the vicinity of the mill is recharged locally by precipitation. Tritium/helium age dating methods found a "modern day" apparent age in water samples collected from springs in the study area surrounding the mill. This apparent age indicates localized recharge sources that potentially include artificial recharge of seepage from constructed wildlife refuge ponds near the mill. The stable oxygen isotope-ratio, delta oxygen-18, or δ(18O/16O), known as δ18O, and hydrogen isotope-ratio, delta deuterium, or δ(2H/1H), known as δD, data indicate that water discharging from Entrance Spring is isotopically enriched by evaporation and has a similar isotopic fingerprint as water from Recapture Reservoir, which is used as facilities water on the mill site. Water from Recapture

  17. A top-down assessment of energy, water and land use in uranium mining, milling, and refining

    SciTech Connect

    E. Schneider; B. Carlsen; E. Tavrides; C. van der Hoeven; U. Phathanapirom

    2013-11-01

    Land, water and energy use are key measures of the sustainability of uranium production into the future. As the most attractive, accessible deposits are mined out, future discoveries may prove to be significantly, perhaps unsustainably, more intensive consumers of environmental resources. A number of previous attempts have been made to provide empirical relationships connecting these environmental impact metrics to process variables such as stripping ratio and ore grade. These earlier attempts were often constrained by a lack of real world data and perform poorly when compared against data from modern operations. This paper conditions new empirical models of energy, water and land use in uranium mining, milling, and refining on contemporary data reported by operating mines. It shows that, at present, direct energy use from uranium production represents less than 1% of the electrical energy produced by the once-through fuel cycle. Projections of future energy intensity from uranium production are also possible by coupling the empirical models with estimates of uranium crustal abundance, characteristics of new discoveries, and demand. The projections show that even for the most pessimistic of scenarios considered, by 2100, the direct energy use from uranium production represents less than 3% of the electrical energy produced by the contemporary once-through fuel cycle.

  18. Environmental assessment of ground water compliance activities at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site, Spook, Wyoming. Revision 0

    SciTech Connect

    1996-03-01

    This document is an environmental assessment of the Spook, Wyoming, Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project site. It analyzes the impacts of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) proposed action for ground water compliance. The proposed action is to comply with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards for the UMTRA Project sites (40 CFR Part 192) by meeting supplemental standards based on the limited use ground water at the Spook site. This proposed action would not require site activities, including ground water monitoring, characterization, or institutional controls. Ground water in the uppermost aquifer was contaminated by uranium processing activities at the Spook site, which is in Converse County, approximately 48 miles (mi) (77 kilometers [km]) northeast of Casper, Wyoming. Constituents from the site infiltrated and migrated into the uppermost aquifer, forming a plume that extends approximately 2500 feet (ft) (800 meters [m]) downgradient from the site. The principal site-related hazardous constituents in this plume are uranium, selenium, and nitrate. Background ground water in the uppermost aquifer at the site is considered limited use. It is neither a current nor a potential source of drinking water because of widespread, ambient contamination that cannot be cleaned up using treatment methods reasonably employed in public water supply systems (40 CFR {section} 192.11 (e)). Background ground water quality also is poor due to first, naturally occurring conditions (natural uranium mineralization associated with an alteration front), and second, the effects of widespread human activity not related to uranium milling operations (uranium exploration and mining activities). There are no known exposure pathways to humans, animals, or plants from the contaminated ground water in the uppermost aquifer because it does not discharge to lower aquifers, to the surface, or to surface water.

  19. State policies and requirements for management of uranium mining and milling in New Mexico. Volume IV. The supply of electric power and natural gas fuel as possible constraints on uranium production

    SciTech Connect

    Page, G.B.

    1980-04-01

    The report contained in this volume considers the availability of electric power to supply uranium mines and mills. The report, submited to Sandia Laboratories by the New Mexico Department of Energy and Minerals (EMD), is reproduced without modification. The state concludes that the supply of power, including natural gas-fueled production, will not constrain uranium production.

  20. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Grand Junction, Colorado

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-06-01

    This Baseline Risk Assessment of Ground Water Contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site Near Grand Junction, Colorado evaluates potential impacts to public health or the environment resulting from ground water contamination at the former uranium mill processing site. The tailings and other contaminated material at this site were placed in an off-site disposal cell by the US Department of Energy`s (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project. The remedial activities at the site were conducted from 1989 to 1993. Currently, the UMTRA Project is evaluating ground water contamination. This risk assessment is the first document specific to this site for the Ground Water Project. This risk assessment evaluates the most contaminated ground water that flows beneath the processing site toward the Colorado River. The monitor wells that have consistently shown the highest concentrations of most contaminants are used to assess risk. This risk assessment will be used in conjunction with additional activities and documents to determine what remedial action may be needed for contaminated ground water at the site. This risk assessment follows an approach outlined by the EPA. the first step is to evaluate ground water data collected from monitor wells at the site. Evaluation of these data showed that the contaminants of potential concern in the ground water are arsenic, cadmium, cobalt, fluoride, iron, manganese, molybdenum, nickel, sulfate, uranium, vanadium, zinc, and radium-226. The next step in the risk assessment is to estimate how much of these contaminants people would be exposed to if they drank from a well installed in the contaminated ground water at the former processing site.

  1. Summary of the engineering assessment of inactive uranium mill tailings: Phillips/United Nuclear site, Ambrosia Lake, New Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    1981-10-01

    Ford, Bacon and Davis Utah, Inc., has reevaluated the Phillips/United Nuclear site in order to revise the December 1977 engineering assessment of the problems resulting from the existence of radioactive uranium mill tailings at Ambrosia Lake, New Mexico. This engineering assessment has included the preparation of topographic maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric maps, the performance of core drillings and radiometric measurements sufficient to determine areas and volumes of tailings and radiation exposures of individuals and nearby populations, the investigations of site hydrology and meteorology, and the evaluation and costing of alternative corrective actions. Radon gas released from the 2.6 million dry tons of tailings at the Phillips/United Nuclear site constitutes the most significant environmental impact, although windblown tailings and external gamma radiation also are factors. The four alternative actions presented in this engineering assessment range from millsite decontamination with the addition of 3 m of stabilization cover material, to removal of the tailings to remote disposal sites and decontamination of the tailings site. Cost estimates for the four options range from about $21,500,000 for stabilization in-place, to about $45,200,000 for disposal at a distance of about 15 mi. Three principal alternatives for the reprocessing of the Phillips/United Nuclear tailings were examined: heap leaching; treatment at an existing mill; reprocessing at a new conventional mill constructed for tailings reprocessing. The cost of the uranium recovered would be about $87/lb of U/sub 3/O/sub 8/ by either heap leach or conventional plant process. The spot market price for uranium was $25/lb early in 1981. Reprocessing the Phillips/United Nuclear tailings for uranium recovery does not appear to be economically attractive under present or foreseeable market conditions.

  2. Evaluation and application of anion exchange resins to measure groundwater uranium flux at a former uranium mill site.

    PubMed

    Stucker, Valerie; Ranville, James; Newman, Mark; Peacock, Aaron; Cho, Jaehyun; Hatfield, Kirk

    2011-10-15

    Laboratory tests and a field validation experiment were performed to evaluate anion exchange resins for uranium sorption and desorption in order to develop a uranium passive flux meter (PFM). The mass of uranium sorbed to the resin and corresponding masses of alcohol tracers eluted over the duration of groundwater installation are then used to determine the groundwater and uranium contaminant fluxes. Laboratory based batch experiments were performed using Purolite A500, Dowex 21K and 21K XLT, Lewatit S6328 A resins and silver impregnated activated carbon to examine uranium sorption and extraction for each material. The Dowex resins had the highest uranium sorption, followed by Lewatit, Purolite and the activated carbon. Recoveries from all ion exchange resins were in the range of 94-99% for aqueous uranium in the environmentally relevant concentration range studied (0.01-200 ppb). Due to the lower price and well-characterized tracer capacity, Lewatit S6328 A was used for field-testing of PFMs at the DOE UMTRA site in Rifle, CO. The effect on the flux measurements of extractant (nitric acid)/resin ratio, and uranium loading were investigated. Higher cumulative uranium fluxes (as seen with concentrations>1 ug U/gram resin) yielded more homogeneous resin samples versus lower cumulative fluxes (<1 ug U/gram resin), which caused the PFM to have areas of localized concentration of uranium. Resin homogenization and larger volume extractions yield reproducible results for all levels of uranium fluxes. Although PFM design can be improved to measure flux and groundwater flow direction, the current methodology can be applied to uranium transport studies. PMID:21798572

  3. Environmental Assessment of remedial action at the Ambrosia Lake uranium mill tailings site, Ambrosia Lake, New Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1987-06-01

    This document assesses and compares the environmental impacts of various alternatives for remedial action at the Ambrosia Lake uranium mill tailings site located near Ambrosia Lake, New Mexico. The designated site covers 196 acres and contains 111 acres of tailings and some of the original mill structures. The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act (UMTRCA), Public Law 95-604, authorizes the US Department of Energy to clean up the site to reduce the potential health impacts associated with the residual radioactive materials remaining at the site and at associated properties off the site. The US Environmental Protection Agency promulgated standards for th remedial action (40 CFR Part 192). Remedial action must be performed in accordance with these standards and with the concurrence of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The proposed action is to stabilize the tailings at their present location by consolidating the tailings and associated contaminated materials into a recontoured pile. A radon barrier would be constructed over the pile and various erosion protection measures would be taken to assure the long-term stability of the pile. Another alternative which would involve moving the tailings to a new location is also assessed in this document. This alternative would generally involve greater short-term impacts and costs but would result in stabilization of the tailings at an undeveloped location. The no action alternative is also assessed in this document.

  4. Environmental assessment of remedial action at the Shiprock uranium mill tailings site, Shiprock, New Mexico: Volume 1, Text

    SciTech Connect

    1984-05-01

    This document assesses and compares the environmental impacts of various alternatives for remedial action at the shiprock uranium mill tailings site located on the Navajo Indian Reservation, one mile south of Shiprock, New Mexico. The site contains 72 acres of tailings and four of the original mill buildings. The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 (UMTRCA), Public Law 95-604, authorizes the US Department of Energy to clean up the site to reduce the potential health impacts associated with the residual radioactive materials remaining at the site and at associated properties off the site. The US Environmental Protection Agency promulgated standards for the remedial actions (40 CFR 192). Remedial actions must be performed in accordance with these standards and with the concurrence of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The proposed action is to stabilize the tailings at their present location by consolidating the tailings and associated contaminated soils into a recontoured pile. A seven-foot-thick radon barrier would be constructed over the pile and various erosion control measures would be taken to assure the long-term integrity of the pile. Three other alternatives which involve moving the tailings to new locations are assessed in this document. These alternatives which involve moving the tailings to new locations are assessed in this document. These alternatives generally involve greater short-term impacts and are more costly but would result in the tailings being stabilized in a more remote location. The no action alternative is also assessed. 99 refs., 40 figs., 58 tabs.

  5. Environmental assessment of remedial action at the Slick Rock uranium mill tailings sites, Slick Rock, Colorado. Revision 1

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-09-01

    The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 (42 USC {section}7901 et seq.), hereafter referred to as the UMTRCA, authorized the US Department of Energy (DOE) to clean up two uranium mill tailings processing sites near Slick Rock, Colorado, in San Miquel County. Contaminated materials cover an estimated 63 acres of the Union Carbide (UC) processing site and 15 ac of the North Continent (NC) processing site. The sites are within 1 mile of each other and are adjacent to the Dolores River. The sites contain concrete foundations of mill buildings, tailings piles, and areas contaminated by windblown and waterborne radioactive tailings materials. The total estimated volume of contaminated materials is approximately 621,300 cubic yards (yd{sup 3}). In addition to the contamination in the two processing site areas, four VPs were found to contain contamination. As a result of the tailings being exposed to the environment, contamination associated with the UC and NC sites has leached into shallow ground water. Surface water has not been affected. The closest residence is approximately 0.3 air mi from either site. The proposed action is to remediate the UC and NC sites by removing all contaminated materials within the designing site boundaries or otherwise associated with the sites, and relocating them to, and stabilizing them at, a location approximately 5 road mi northeast of the sites on land administered by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

  6. Field testing of fugitive dust control techniques at a uranium mill tailings pile - 1982 Field Test, Gas Hills, Wyoming.

    SciTech Connect

    Elmore, M.R.; Hartley, J.N.

    1983-12-01

    A field test was conducted on a uranium tailings pile to evaluate the effectiveness of 15 chemical stabilizers for control of fugitive dust from uranium mill tailings. A tailings pile at the Federal American Partners (FAP) Uranium Mill, Gas Hills, Wyoming, was used for the field test. Preliminary laboratory tests using a wing tunnel were conducted to select the more promising stabilizers for field testing. Fourteen of the chemical stabilizers were applied with a field spray system pulled behind a tractor; one--Hydro Mulch--was applied with a hydroseeder. A portable weather station and data logger were installed to record the weather conditions at the test site. After 1 year of monitoring (including three site visits), all of the stabilizers have degraded to some degree; but those applied at the manufacturers' recommended rate are still somewhat effective in reducing fugitive emissions. The following synthetic polymer emulsions appear to be the more effective stabilizers: Wallpol 40-133 from Reichold Chemicals, SP-400 from Johnson and March Corporation, and CPB-12 from Wen Don Corporation. Installed costs for the test plots ranged from $8400 to $11,300/ha; this range results from differences in stabilizer costs. Large-scale stabilization costs of the test materials are expected to range from $680 to $3600/ha based on FAP experience. Evaluation of the chemical stabilizers will continue for approximately 1 year. 2 references, 33 figures, 22 tables.

  7. Remediation of former uranium mining and milling activities in Central Asia

    SciTech Connect

    Waggitt, Peter

    2007-07-01

    Available in abstract form only. Full text of publication follows: Several of the Central Asian countries of the former Soviet Union were involved in the uranium mining and milling industry from about 1945 for varying periods until the break up of the Soviet Union in 1991 and beyond. Some facilities are still producing in Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan. However, before the break up, many facilities had been abandoned and in only a few cases had any remediation been undertaken. Since 1991 the newly independent states of the region have been seeking assistance for the remediation of the multitude of tailings piles, waste rock stockpiles and abandoned, and often semi dismantled, production facilities that may be found throughout the region. Many of these sites are close to settlements that were established as service towns for the mines. Most towns still have populations, although the mining industry has departed. In some instances there are cases of pollution and contamination and in many locations there is a significant level of public concern. The IAEA has been undertaking a number of Technical Cooperation (TC) projects throughout the region for some time to strengthen the institutions in the relevant states and assist them to establish monitoring and surveillance programs as an integral part of the long term remediation process. The IAEA is liaising with other agencies and donors who are also working on these problems to optimise the remediation effort. The paper describes the objectives and operation of the main TC regional program, liaison efforts with other agencies, the achievements so far and the long term issues for remediation of these legacies of the 'cold war' era. (authors)

  8. Groundwater contamination from an inactive uranium mill tailings pile: 2. Application of a dynamic mixing model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Narasimhan, T. N.; White, A. F.; Tokunaga, T.

    1986-12-01

    At Riverton, Wyoming, low pH process waters from an abandoned uranium mill tailings pile have been infiltrating into and contaminating the shallow water table aquifer. The contamination process has been governed by transient infiltration rates, saturated-unsaturated flow, as well as transient chemical reactions between the many chemical species present in the mixing waters and the sediments. In the first part of this two-part series [White et al., 1984] we presented field data as well as an interpretation based on a static mixing model. As an upper bound, we estimated that 1.7% of the tailings water had mixed with the native groundwater. In the present work we present the results of numerical investigation of the dynamic mixing process. The model, DYNAMIX (DYNAmic MIXing), couples a chemical speciation algorithm, PHREEQE, with a modified form of the transport algorithm, TRUMP, specifically designed to handle the simultaneous migration of several chemical constituents. The overall problem of simulating the evolution and migration of the contaminant plume was divided into three sub problems that were solved in sequential stages. These were the infiltration problem, the reactive mixing problem, and the plume-migration problem. The results of the application agree reasonably with the detailed field data. The methodology developed in the present study demonstrates the feasibility of analyzing the evolution of natural hydrogeochemical systems through a coupled analysis of transient fluid flow as well as chemical reactions. It seems worthwhile to devote further effort toward improving the physicochemical capabilities of the model as well as to enhance its computational efficiency.

  9. Groundwater contamination from an inactive uranium mill tailings pile. 2. Application of a dynamic mixing model

    SciTech Connect

    Narashimhan, T.N.; White, A.F.; Tokunaga, T.

    1986-12-01

    At Riverton, Wyoming, low pH process waters from an abandoned uranium mill tailings pile have been infiltrating into and contaminating the shallow water table aquifer. The contamination process has been governed by transient infiltration rates, saturated-unsaturated flow, as well as transient chemical reactions between the many chemical species present in the mixing waters and the sediments. In the first part of this two-part series the authors presented field data as well as an interpretation based on a static mixing models. As an upper bound, the authors estimated that 1.7% of the tailings water had mixed with the native groundwater. In the present work they present the results of numerical investigation of the dynamic mixing process. The model, DYNAMIX (DYNamic MIXing), couples a chemical speciation algorithm, PHREEQE, with a modified form of the transport algorithm, TRUMP, specifically designed to handle the simultaneous migration of several chemical constituents. The overall problem of simulating the evolution and migration of the contaminant plume was divided into three sub problems that were solved in sequential stages. These were the infiltration problem, the reactive mixing problem, and the plume-migration problem. The results of the application agree reasonably with the detailed field data. The methodology developed in the present study demonstrates the feasibility of analyzing the evolution of natural hydrogeochemical systems through a coupled analysis of transient fluid flow as well as chemical reactions. It seems worthwhile to devote further effort toward improving the physicochemical capabilities of the model as well as to enhance its computational efficiency.

  10. Acceleration of Microbially Mediated U(VI) Reduction at a Uranium Mill Tailings Site, Colorado Plateau

    SciTech Connect

    Phil Long; Todd Anderson; Aaron Peacock; Steve Heald; Yun-Juan Chang; Dick Dayvault; Derek R. Lovley; C.T. Resch; Helen Vrionis; Irene Ortiz-Bernad; D.C. White

    2004-03-17

    A second field-scale electron donor amendment experiment was conducted in 2003 at the Old Rifle Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) site in Rifle, Colorado. The objective of the 2003 experiment (done in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Energy's UMTRA Groundwater Project) was to test the hypothesis that amendment of increased concentration of electron donor would result in an increased export of electron donor down gradient which in turn would create a larger zone of down-gradient U(VI) bioreduction sustained over a longer time period relative to the 2002 experiment (Anderson et al. 2003). During the first experiment (2002), {approx}3 mM acetate was amended to subsurface over a period of 3 months in a 15m by 18m by 2.5m volume comprised of 3 upgradient monitoring wells, 20 injection wells, and 15 down-gradient monitoring wells. After an initial one-month phase of metal reduction, bioavailable oxidized Fe was consumed near the injection gallery and the dominant terminal electron accepting process became sulfate reduction, rapidly consuming the injected acetate. For the 2003 experiment, we amended sufficient acetate ({approx}10 mM) to consume available sulfate and export acetate down-gradient where bioavailable oxidized Fe was still present. Data from the experiment indicate that acetate was exported further down gradient, resulting in a larger zone of microbial U(VI) reduction than for the 2002 experiment. Geohydrologic, geochemical, and microbiological data collected during the course of both experiments enable assessment of relative importance of a number of factors controlling the experimental outcomes. Companion posters by Anderson et al. and White et al. provide additional results.

  11. Evaluation of liners for a uranium-mill tailings disposal site: a status report

    SciTech Connect

    Buelt, J.L.; Hale, V.Q.; Barnes, S.M.; Silviera, D.J.

    1981-05-01

    The United States Department of Energy is conducting a program designed to reclaim or stabilize inactive uranium-mill tailings sites. This report presents the status of the Liner Evaluation Program. The purpose of the study was to identify eight prospective lining materials or composites for laboratory testing. The evaluation was performed by 1) reviewing proposed regulatory requirements to define the material performance criteria; 2) reviewing published literature and communicating with industrial and government experts experienced with lining materials and techniques; and 3) characterizing the tailings at three of the sites for calcium concentration, a selection of anions, radionuclides, organic solvents, and acidity levels. The eight materials selected for laboratory testing are: natural soil amended with sodium-saturated montmorillonite (Volclay); locally available clay in conjunction with an asphalt emulsion radon suppression cover; locally available clay in conjunction with a multibarrier radon suppression cover; rubberized asphalt membrane; hydraulic asphalt concrete; chlorosulfonated polyethylene (hypalon) or high-density polyethylene; bentonite, sand and gravel mixture; and catalytic airblown asphalt membrane. The materials will be exposed in test units now being constructed to conditions such as wet/dry cycles, temperature cycles, oxidative environments, ion-exchange elements, etc. The results of the tests will identify the best material for field study. The status report also presents the information gathered during the field studies at Grand Junction, Colorado. Two liners, a bentonite, sand and gravel mixture, and a catalytic airblown asphalt membrane, were installed in a prepared trench and covered with tailings. The liners were instrumented and are being monitored for migration of moisture, radionuclides, and hazardous chemicals. The two liner materials will also be subjected to accelerated laboratory tests for a comparative assessment.

  12. DESIGN, PERFORMANCE, AND SUSTAINABILITY OF ENGINEERED COVERS FOR URANIUM MILL TAILINGS

    SciTech Connect

    Waugh, W. Jody

    2004-04-21

    Final remedies at most uranium mill tailings sites include engineered covers designed to contain metals and radionuclides in the subsurface for hundreds of years. Early cover designs rely on compacted soil layers to limit water infiltration and release of radon, but some of these covers inadvertently created habitats for deep-rooted plants. Root intrusion and soil development increased the saturated hydraulic conductivity several orders of magnitude above design targets. These covers may require high levels of maintenance to sustain long-term performance. Relatively low precipitation, high potential evapotranspiration, and thick unsaturated soils favor long-term hydrologic isolation of buried waste at arid and semiarid sites. Later covers were designed to mimic this natural soil-water balance with the goal of sustaining performance with little or no maintenance. For example, the cover for the Monticello, Utah, Superfund site relies on a thick soil-sponge layer overlying a sand-and-gravel capillary barrier to store precipitation while plants are dormant and on native vegetation to dry the soil sponge during the growing season. Measurements of both off-site caisson lysimeters and a large 3-ha lysimeter built into the final cover show that drainage has been well below a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency target of less than 3.0 mm/yr. Our stewardship strategy combines monitoring precursors to failure, probabilistic riskbased modeling, and characterization of natural analogs to project performance of covers for a range of possible future environmental scenarios. Natural analogs are needed to understand how ecological processes will influence cover performance, processes that cannot be predicted with short-term monitoring and existing numerical models.

  13. Environmental assessment of remedial action at the Gunnison Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Gunnison, Colorado. Final

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-02-01

    The presence of contaminated uranium mill tailings adjacent to the city of Gunnison has been a local concern for many years. The following issues were identified during public meetings that were held by the DOE prior to distribution of an earlier version of this EA. Many of these issues will require mitigation. Groundwater contamination; in December 1989, a herd of 105 antelope were introduced in an area that includes the Landfill disposal site. There is concern that remedial action-related traffic in the area would result in antelope mortality. The proposed Tenderfoot Mountain haul road may restrict antelope access to their water supply; a second wildlife issue concerns the potential reduction in sage grouse use of breeding grounds (leks) and nesting habitat; the proposed Tenderfoot Mountain haul road would cross areas designated as wetlands by US Army Corps of Engineers (COE); the proposed disposal site is currently used for grazing by cattle six weeks a year in the spring. Additional concerns were stated in comments on a previous version of this EA. The proposed action is to consolidate and remove all contaminated materials associated with the Gunnison processing site to the Landfill disposal site six air miles east of Gunnison. All structures on the site (e.g., water tower, office buildings) were demolished in 1991. The debris is being stored on the site until it can be incorporated into the disposal cell at the disposal site. All contaminated materials would be trucked to the Landfill disposal site on a to-be-constructed haul road that crosses BLM-administered land.

  14. Screening of plant species for phytoremediation of uranium, thorium, barium, nickel, strontium and lead contaminated soils from a uranium mill tailings repository in South China.

    PubMed

    Li, Guang-yue; Hu, Nan; Ding, De-xin; Zheng, Ji-fang; Liu, Yu-long; Wang, Yong-dong; Nie, Xiao-qin

    2011-06-01

    The concentrations of uranium, thorium, barium, nickel, strontium and lead in the samples of the tailings and plant species collected from a uranium mill tailings repository in South China were analyzed. Then, the removal capability of a plant for a target element was assessed. It was found that Phragmites australis had the greatest removal capabilities for uranium (820 μg), thorium (103 μg) and lead (1,870 μg). Miscanthus floridulus had the greatest removal capabilities for barium (3,730 μg) and nickel (667 μg), and Parthenocissus quinquefolia had the greatest removal capability for strontium (3,920 μg). In this study, a novel coefficient, termed as phytoremediation factor (PF), was proposed, for the first time, to assess the potential of a plant to be used in phytoremediation of a target element contaminated soil. Phragmites australis has the highest PFs for uranium (16.6), thorium (8.68), barium (10.0) and lead (10.5). Miscanthus floridulus has the highest PF for Ni (25.0). Broussonetia papyrifera and Parthenocissus quinquefolia have the relatively high PFs for strontium (28.1 and 25.4, respectively). On the basis of the definition for a hyperaccumulator, only Cyperus iria and Parthenocissus quinquefolia satisfied the criteria for hyperaccumulator of uranium (36.4 μg/g) and strontium (190 μg/g), and could be the candidates for phytoremediation of uranium and strontium contaminated soils. The results show that the PF has advantage over the hyperaccumulator in reflecting the removal capabilities of a plant for a target element, and is more adequate for assessing the potential of a plant to be used in phytoremediation than conventional method. PMID:21523506

  15. A thick homogeneous vegetated cover design proves cost - and schedule-effective for the reclamation of uranium mills sites near Spokane, Washington

    SciTech Connect

    Blacklaw, J.; Robertson, G.; Stoffel, D.; Ahmad, J.; Fordham, E.

    1997-08-01

    The Washington State Department of Health (WDOH) has licensed two medium sized uranium mills with tailings impoundments covering 28 and 40 hectares (70 and 100 acres), respectively, The uranium mill licensees have submitted closure and reclamation plans to the state, and site-specific conditions have determined the closure design features, Conventional uranium mill cover designs usually incorporate an overall cap of one to three meters, which includes a low-permeability clay barrier layer. A technical evaluation of several uranium mill facilities that used this design was published in the fall of 1994 and reported that unexpected vegetation root damage had occurred in the low-permeability clay (or bentonite amended) barrier layers. The technical report suggested that the low-permeability design feature at some sites could be compromised within a very short time and the regulatory goal of 1,000 years performance might not be achieved. In October 1994, WDOH sponsored a technical forum meeting to consider design alternatives to address these reliability concerns. Representatives from the federal government, nuclear industry, licensees, engineering firms, and state regulatory agencies attended the workshop. Risk factors considered in the evaluation of the uranium mill reclamation plans include: (1) radon gas emanation through the cover (the air pathway), and (2) migration of hazardous and/or radioactive constituents (the groundwater pathway). Additional design considerations include site structural stability, longevity of 1,000 years, and no active (ongoing) maintenance. 9 refs.

  16. An aerial radiological survey of the Durango, Colorado uranium mill tailings site and surrounding area. Date of survey: August 1980

    SciTech Connect

    Hilton, L.K.

    1981-06-01

    An aerial radiological survey of Durango, Colorado, including the inactive uranium mill tailings piles located southwest of the town, was conducted during August 25--29, 1980, for the Department of Energy`s Environmental and Safety Engineering Division. Areas of radiation exposure rates higher than the local background, which was about 15 microrentgens per hour ({mu}R/h), were observed directly over and to the south of the mill tailings piles, over a cemetery, and at two spots near the fairgrounds. The rapidly changing radiation exposure rates at the boundaries of the piles preclude accurate extrapolation of aerial radiological data to ground level exposure rates in their immediate vicinity. Estimated radiation exposure rates close to the piles, however, approached 30 times background, or about 450 {mu}R/h. Radiation exposure rates in a long area extending south from the tailings piles were about 25 {mu}R/h.

  17. Annotated bibliography of environmentally relevant investigations of uranium mining and milling in the Grants Mineral Belt, northwestern New Mexico

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Otton, James K.

    2011-01-01

    Studies of the natural environment in the Grants Mineral Belt in northwestern New Mexico have been conducted since the 1930s; however, few such investigations predate uranium mining and milling operations, which began in the early 1950s. This report provides an annotated bibliography of reports that describe the hydrology and geochemistry of groundwaters and surface waters and the geochemistry of soils and sediments in the Grants Mineral Belt and contiguous areas. The reports referenced and discussed provide a large volume of information about the environmental conditions in the area after mining started. Data presented in many of these studies, if evaluated carefully, may provide much basic information about the baseline conditions that existed over large parts of the Grants Mineral Belt prior to mining. Other data may provide information that can direct new work in efforts to discriminate between baseline conditions and the effects of the mining and milling on the natural environment.

  18. The ultrasonic ranging and data system for radiological surveys in the UMTRA (Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action) Project

    SciTech Connect

    Little, C.A.; Berven, B.A.; Blair, M.S.; Dickerson, K.S.; Pickering, D.A.

    1988-01-01

    The Ultrasonic Ranging and Data System (USRADS) was developed to allow radiation exposure data and positional information to be collected, stored and analyzed in a more efficient manner than currently employed on the (Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) project. USRADS is a portable unit which employs ultrasonics, radio frequency transmissions, and a personal computer. Operational experience indicates that the system results in increased information about the property with decreased data analysis and transcription effort and only slightly more field effort. 5 refs., 3 figs., 2 tabs.

  19. Economic impact study of the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action project in Colorado: Colorado state fiscal year 1995

    SciTech Connect

    1995-12-01

    This Colorado economic impact study summarizes employment and economic benefits to the state from activities associated with the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project during Colorado state fiscal year (FY) 1995 (1 July 1994 through 30 June 1995). To capture employment information, a questionnaire was distributed to subcontractor employees at the active UMTRA Project sites of Grand Junction, Gunnison, Maybell, Naturita, Rifle, and Slick Rock, Colorado. Economic data were requested from the Remedial Action Contractor (RAC), the Technical Assistance Contractor (TAC) and the US Department of Energy (DOE). The most significant benefits associated with the UMTRA Project in Colorado are summarized.

  20. Economic impact study of the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action Project in Colorado: Colorado state fiscal year 1993

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1993-12-01

    The Colorado economic impact study summarizes employment and economic benefits to the state from activities associated with the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project during Colorado state fiscal year 1993 (July 1, 1992, through June 30, 1993). To capture employment benefits, a questionnaire was distributed to subcontractor employees at the active UMTRA Project sites of Grand Junction, Rifle, and Gunnison, Colorado. An estimated 52 percent of the employees working on the UMTRA Project responded to this information request. Economic data were requested from each site prime subcontractor, as well as from the Remedial Action Contractor. The most significant benefits associated with the UMTRA Project in Colorado are summarized.

  1. Evaluation of health risks associated with proposed ground water standards at selected inactive uranium mill-tailings sites

    SciTech Connect

    Hamilton, L.D.; Medeiros, W.H.; Meinhold, A.; Morris, S.C.; Moskowitz, P.D.; Nagy, J.; Lackey, K.

    1989-04-01

    The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed ground water standards applicable to all inactive uranium mill-tailings sites. The proposed standards include maximum concentration limits (MCL) for currently regulated drinking water contaminants, as well as the addition of standards for molybdenum, uranium, nitrate, and radium-226 plus radium-228. The proposed standards define the point of compliance to be everywhere downgradient of the tailings pile, and require ground water remediation to drinking water standards if MCLs are exceeded. This document presents a preliminary description of the Phase 2 efforts. The potential risks and hazards at Gunnison, Colorado and Lakeview, Oregon were estimated to demonstrate the need for a risk assessment and the usefulness of a cost-benefit approach in setting supplemental standards and determining the need for and level of restoration at UMTRA sites. 8 refs., 12 tabs.

  2. Radiologic characterization of the Mexican Hat, Utah, uranium mill tailings remedial action site: Appendix D, Addenda D1--D7

    SciTech Connect

    Ludlam, J.R.

    1985-01-01

    This radiologic characterization of the inactive uranium millsite at Mexican Hat, Utah, was conducted by Bendix Field Engineering Corporation foe the US Department of Energy (DOE), Grand Junction Project Office, in response to and in accord with a Statement of Work prepared by the DOE Uranium Mill tailings Remedial Action Project (UMTRAP) Technical Assistance Contractor, Jacobs Engineering Group, Inc. the objective of this project was to determine the horizontal and vertical extent of contamination that exceeds the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards at the Mexican Hat site. The data presented in this report are required for characterization of the areas adjacent to the Mexican Hat tailings piles and for the subsequent design of cleanup activities. Some on-pile sampling was required to determine the depth of the 15-pCi/g Ra-226 interface in an area where wind and water erosion has taken place.

  3. Baseline risk assessment of ground water contamination at the Uranium Mill Tailings Site near Lakeview, Oregon. Revision 2

    SciTech Connect

    1996-03-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project consists of the Surface Project (Phase I) and the Ground Water Project (Phase II). Under the UMTRA Surface Project, tailings, contaminated soil, equipment, and materials associated with the former uranium ore processing at UMTRA Project sites are placed into disposal cells. The cells are designed to reduce radon and other radiation emissions and to minimize further contamination of ground water. Surface cleanup at the UMTRA Project site near Lakeview, Oregon, was completed in 1989. The mill operated from February 1958 to November 1960. The Ground Water Project evaluates the nature and extent of ground water contamination that resulted from the uranium ore processing activities. The Ground Water Project is in its beginning stages. Human health may be at risk from exposure to ground water contaminated by uranium ore processing. Exposure could occur by drinking water pumped out of a hypothetical well drilled in the contaminated areas. Ecological risks to plants or animals may result from exposure to surface water and sediment that have received contaminated ground water. A risk assessment describes a source of contamination, how that contamination reaches people and the environment, the amount of contamination to which people or the ecological environment may be exposed, and the health or ecological effects that could result from that exposure. This risk assessment is a site-specific document that will be used to evaluate current and potential future impacts to the public and the environment from exposure to contaminated ground water. The results of this evaluation and further site characterization will determine whether any action is needed to protect human health or the ecological environment.

  4. A Multifaceted Sampling Approach to Better Understanding Biogeochemical and Hydrogeological Controls on Uranium Mobility at a Former Uranium Mill Tailings Site in Riverton, Wyoming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dam, W. L.; Johnson, R. H.; Campbell, S.; Bone, S. E.; Noel, V.; Bargar, J.

    2015-12-01

    Understanding uranium mobility in subsurface environments is not trivial. Obtaining sufficient data to accurately represent soil and aquifer characteristics can require unique approaches that evolve with added site knowledge. At Riverton, the primary source of uranium mill tailings remaining from ore processing was removed but contaminant plumes have persisted longer than predicted by groundwater modeling. What are the primary mechanisms controlling plume persistence? DOE is conducting new characterization studies to assist our understanding of underlying biogeochemical and hydrogeological mechanisms affecting secondary sources. A variety of field sampling techniques are being sequentially employed including augering, trenching, pore water sampling, and installing multi-level wells. In August 2012, vadose zone soil samples from 34 locations and groundwater from 103 boreholes were collected with Geoprobe ® direct push rods. Lower than expected uranium concentrations in composited shallow soils indicated the need for more focused and deeper samples. In May 2014, soil samples containing evaporites were collected along the bank of the Little Wind River; elevated uranium concentrations in evaporite minerals correlated with plume configurations and reflect contaminated groundwater discharge at the river. In September 2014, hand anger samples collected by the river and oxbow lake also indicated the presence of organic rich zones containing elevated uranium (>50 mg/kg). Subsequent samples collected from five backhoe trenches in May 2015 revealed a highly heterogeneous vadose zone composed of clay, silt, sand and cobbles containing evaporites and organic rich zones which may interact with groundwater plumes.Plans for August 2015 include sonic drilling to obtain continuous cores from the surface down to the base of the surficial aquifer with multi-level monitoring wells constructed in each borehole to assess vertical variation in groundwater chemistry. Temporary well

  5. Final programmatic environmental impact statement for the uranium mill tailings remedial action ground water project. Volume I

    SciTech Connect

    1996-10-01

    This programmatic environmental impact statement (PElS) was prepared for the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Ground Water Project to comply with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). This PElS provides an analysis of the potential impacts of the alternatives and ground water compliance strategies as well as potential cumulative impacts. On November 8, 1978, Congress enacted the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act (UMTRCA) of 1978, Public Law, codified at 42 USC §7901 et seq. Congress found that uranium mill tailings " ... may pose a potential and significant radiation health hazard to the public, and that every reasonable effort should be made to provide for stabilization, disposal, and control in a safe, and environmentally sound manner of such tailings in order to prevent or minimize other environmental hazards from such tailings." Congress authorized the Secretary of Energy to designate inactive uranium processing sites for remedial action by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). Congress also directed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to set the standards to be followed by the DOE for this process of stabilization, disposal, and control. On January 5, 1983, EPA published standards (40 CFR Part 192) for the disposal and cleanup of residual radioactive materials. On September 3, 1985, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit set aside and remanded to EPA the ground water provisions of the standards. The EPA proposed new standards to replace remanded sections and changed other sections of 40 CFR Part 192. These proposed standards were published in the Federal Register on September 24, 1987 (52 FR 36000). Section 108 of the UMTRCA requires that DOE comply with EPA's proposed standards in the absence of final standards. The Ground Water Project was planned under the proposed standards. On January 11, 1995, EPA published the final rule, with which the DOE must now comply. The PElS and the Ground Water Project are in

  6. Worker protection implications of the solubility and human metabolism of modern uranium mill products in the U.S.

    PubMed

    Brown, Steven H; Chambers, Douglas B

    2014-11-01

    This paper presents an analysis of the implications of some recent studies performed to characterize uranium products from modern uranium recovery facilities important for worker protection. Assumptions about the solubility (related to the molecular species being produced) of these materials in humans are critical to properly assess radiation dose from intakes, understand chemotoxic implications, and establish protective exposure standards (airborne concentrations, limits on intake, etc.). Recent studies, as well as information in the historical professional literature, were reviewed that address the issue of solubility and related characteristics. These data are important for the design of programs for assessment of both chemical and radiological aspects of worker exposure to the products of modern uranium recovery plants (conventional uranium mills and in situ recovery plants; i.e., ISRs). The data suggest strongly that the oxide form produced by these facilities (and therefore, product solubility) is related to precipitation chemistry and thermal exposure (dryer temperature). Given the peroxide precipitation and low temperature drying methods being used at many modern uranium recovery facilities in the U.S. today, very soluble products are being produced. The dosimetric impacts of these products to the pulmonary system (except perhaps in case of an extreme acute insult) would be small, and any residual pulmonary retention beyond a month or two would most likely be too small to measure by traditional urinalysis sampling or the current state-of-the-art of natural uranium in vivo lung counting techniques. Uranium recovery plants should revisit the adequacy of current bioassay programs in the context of their process and product specifics. Workers potentially exposed to these very soluble yellowcake concentrates should have urine specimens submitted for uranium analysis on an approximately weekly basis, including analysis for the biomarkers associated with potential

  7. Remedial Action Plan and site design for stabilization of the inactive uranium mill tailings site at Mexican Hat, Utah: Appendix D. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    1988-07-01

    This appendix is an assessment of the present conditions of the inactive uranium mill site near Mexican Hat, Utah. It consolidates available engineering, radiological, geotechnical, hydrological, meteorological, and other information pertinent to the design of the Remedial Action Plan. Plan is to characterize the conditions at the mill and tailings site so that the Remedial Action Contractor may complete final designs of the remedial action.

  8. Remedial action plan and site design for stabilization of the inactive uranium mill tailings sites at Rifle, Colorado. Volume 2, Appendices D and E: Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-02-01

    This appendix assesses the present conditions and data gathered about the two inactive uranium mill tailings sites near Rifle, Colorado, and the designated disposal site six miles north of Rifle in the area of Estes Gulch. It consolidates available engineering, radiological, geotechnical, hydrological, meteorological, and other information pertinent to the design of the Remedial Action Plan (RAP). The data characterize conditions at the mill, tailings, and disposal site so that the Remedial Action Contractor (RAC) may complete final designs for the remedial actions.

  9. Remedial Action Plan and site design for stabilization of the inactive uranium mill tailings site at Gunnison, Colorado: Remedial action selection report. [Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action (UMTRA) Project

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-10-01

    The Gunnison uranium mill tailings site is just south of the city limits of Gunnison, Colorado, in the south-central part of the state. The entire site covers 61 acres in the valley of the Gunnison River and Tomichi Creek. Contaminated materials at the Gunnison processing site include the tailings pile, covering about 35 acres to an average depth of nine feet and containing 459,000 cubic yards. Ore storage areas and the former mill processing area cover about 20 acres on the south side of the site. The volume of contaminated materials to be disposed of as part of the remedial action is estimated to be 718,900 cubic yards. An interim action was approved by the US Department of Energy to eliminate existing safety hazards to the Gunnison community. These actions, started in September 1991, included demolition of mill buildings and related processing facilities, excavation of two underground storage tanks, removal of asbestos and other hazardous materials from buildings, storage of those materials in a secured area on the site, and improvements of site security.

  10. TRANSPORT AND FATE OF AMMONIUM AND ITS IMPACT ON URANIUM AND OTHER TRACE ELEMENTS AT A FORMER URANIUM MILL TAILING SITE

    PubMed Central

    Miao, Ziheng; Nihat, Hakan; McMillan, Andrew Lee; Brusseau, Mark L.

    2013-01-01

    The remediation of ammonium-containing groundwater discharged from uranium mill tailing sites is a difficult problem facing the mining industry. The Monument Valley site is a former uranium mining site in the southwest US with both ammonium and nitrate contamination of groundwater. In this study, samples collected from 14 selected wells were analyzed for major cations and anions, trace elements, and isotopic composition of ammonium and nitrate. In addition, geochemical data from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) database were analyzed. Results showing oxic redox conditions and correspondence of isotopic compositions of ammonium and nitrate confirmed the natural attenuation of ammonium via nitrification. Moreover, it was observed that ammonium concentration within the plume area is closely related to concentrations of uranium and a series of other trace elements including chromium, selenium, vanadium, iron, and manganese. It is hypothesized that ammonium-nitrate transformation processes influence the disposition of the trace elements through mediation of redox potential, pH, and possibly aqueous complexation and solid-phase sorption. Despite the generally relatively low concentrations of trace elements present in groundwater, their transport and fate may be influenced by remediation of ammonium or nitrate at the site. PMID:24357895