Containment of Low-Level Radioactive Material

by Kenneth R. Bell, Bechtel Civil Inc, Gaithersburg, MD, USA,
Charlie R. Johnson, Bechtel Civil Inc, Gaithersburg, MD, USA,



Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Geotechnical Practice for Waste Disposal '87

Abstract: The U. S. Department of Energy has completed a short term storage site for the containment of low-level radioactive residues and contaminated soil near Lewiston, New York. The site, known as the Niagara Falls Storage Site, has been used as a depository for the contaminated material for over four decades. In order to provide positive control against the contamination of groundwater and release of radon gas from the contaminated material, an engineered containment earth structure was designed and has been constructed at the site over the past five years. The containment structure consists of three major elements. The base of the containment is comprised of a naturally occurring heavy gray clay layer. The four sides consist of a compacted clay cutoff wall keyed into the underlying clay. The cutoff wall extends from the gray clay to a minimum of 1. 5 meters above the surrounding grade. After all contaminated soil material and residues were placed inside the 860-metre-long cutoff wall, the 4 hectare containment area was covered with a multi-layered cap which includes a 0. 9 metre compacted clay layer.

Subject Headings: Soil pollution | Compacted soils | Clays | Permeability (soil) | Radioactive materials | Hazardous materials | Soil water | Waste storage | Water storage | Radioactive wastes | North America | United States | New York

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