A-Area, dangers of nuclear, environment, fire hazard, Fluor, H-Area, H-Canyon, hydrogen fires, liquid radioactive waste tanks, N-Area, nuclear, nuclear accident, nuclear fires, nuclear industry, nuclear safety, nuclear waste, nuclear waste fires, nuclear weapons, plutonium, radiation, radioactive fire, radioactive waste, risk management, Savannah River Nuclear Site, Shipment of Liquid Radioactive Waste from Canada, South Carolina, SRNL, SRS, tritium, US DOE, USA, water
Locations exported from http://activefiremaps.fs.fed.us/index.php and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Savannah_River_Site
The last fire which we found at Savannah River Nuclear Site (South Carolina) was in H area on August 7th. Three new fires have appeared on the US government fire map, on August 16th, 17th, and 18th. Having just started monitoring over the last couple of weeks, we are left with the impression that these unreported fires must be frequent at the Savannah River Nuclear Site, at least in the hotter months.
The fires appear to be in the area of the H Tank “Farm” of liquid radioactive waste; at the N-area, probably a shipping container of radioactive waste (a fav way for the UK to store its nuclear waste and perhaps the US uses the same method, or perhaps it is nuclear waste from the UK), and in the A-area which is the Savannah River National Lab (SRNL) itself. The arrival of Canadian liquid highly radioactive waste and other foreign radioactive waste which is processed through the H Canyon adds to the radioactive waste burden (and hence risk) of the liquid radioactive waste tank “farms” and even impacts the N-area, as seen in this diagram. Yellow was added to emphasize how two areas which had fires would be impacted by liquid Canadian radioactive waste:
One can speculate that these fires are most likely from hydrogen or tritium (radioactive hydrogen) – either accidental or burnoff to prevent explosion. What else did or did not escape will surely never be known. The whole site could go up in flames and there is a 99% chance that the US government would never tell anyone. If it were reported it would be because another country reported it.
Apparent H Tank “Farm” Fire:
Detection Date: 16 Aug 2016
Detection Time: 16:17 UTC
Sensor: Terra MODIS
In the photo below, the fire reported on the 7th was in the area of the upper right corner; the fire reported on the 16th in the lower left.
Apparent Fire at A Area – SRNL:
Detection Date: 17 Aug 2016
Detection Time: 18:35 UTC
Sensor: Aqua MODIS
Reported Fire Apparently at N Site
Detection Date: 18 Aug 2016
Detection Time: 16:01 UTC
Sensor: Terra MODIS
KML exported from here to Google Earth: http://activefiremaps.fs.fed.us/index.php
“Tritium may also meet the definition of other hazard classes in 49 CFR 173; e.g., tritium gas, in certain conditions, may meet the definition of a flammable gas. Tritium-contaminated hazardous waste will be subject to the requirements for hazardous waste shipments“. http://energy.gov/sites/prod/files/2013/07/f2/hdbk1129-07.pdf
“Since its earliest days, SRNL has developed technologies to enhance the safety and cost-effectiveness of the Savannah River Site’s work with tritium, a radioactive form of hydrogen gas that is a vital component of the nation’s nuclear defense. SRNL continues its support of a robust nuclear weapons stockpile through deployment of improved technologies and testing of components to ensure stockpile safety and reliability. The laboratory’s researchers are also recognized world leaders in technologies to separate, stabilize, package, transport, store, account for, and disposition spent fuel, plutonium and other nuclear materials. Earlier in its history, SRNL and SRS supported national defense through the production of plutonium as a feedstock in the manufacture of nuclear weapons. Emphasis now is on the recovery, storage and safe disposition of nuclear materials to ensure they do not represent a proliferation or environmental risk and to support global threat reduction” http://srnl.doe.gov/homeland.htm
DC bureau on SRS Tank Farms and how use of H-Canyon creates more liquid radioactive waste: http://youtu.be/Dh640XSVD1A
Heat makes chemical reactions speed up:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/gcsebitesize/science/add_aqa_pre_2011/chemreac/ratesrev3.shtml Heat would cause hydrogen to expand. Additionally heat and humidity at the Savannah River Site would speed up corrosion, and microbial growth which can also speed up corrosion processes. Many radioactive materials are highly reactive metals.
More pictures or information may be added to this post later.