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Title: NNSS Soils Monitoring: Plutonium Valley (CAU 366) FY2013 and FY2014

Abstract

The Desert Research Institute (DRI) is conducting a field assessment of the potential for contaminated soil transport from the Plutonium Valley Contamination Area (CA) as a result of wind transport and storm runoff in support of Nevada Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) efforts to complete regulatory closure of the contamination areas. The DRI work is intended to confirm the likely mechanism(s) of transport and determine the meteorological conditions that might cause movement of contaminated soils. Emphasis is given to collecting sediment transported by channelized storm runoff at the Plutonium Valley investigation sites. These data will inform closure plans that are being developed, which will facilitate appropriate closure design and postclosure monitoring. Desert Research Institute installed two meteorological monitoring stations south (station number 1) and north (station number 2) of the Plutonium Valley CA and a runoff sediment sampling station within the CA in 2011. Temperature, wind speed, wind direction, relative humidity, precipitation, solar radiation, barometric pressure, soil temperature, and airborne particulate concentration are collected at both meteorological stations. The maximum, minimum, and average or total (as appropriate) for each of these parameters is recorded for each 10-minute interval. The sediment sampling station includes an automatically activated ISCO sampling pump with collectionmore » bottles for suspended sediment, which is activated when sufficient flow is present in the channel, and passive traps for bedload material that is transported down the channel during runoff events. This report presents data collected from these stations during FY2013 and FY2014.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [1];  [1];  [1]
  1. Desert Research Inst. (DRI), Las Vegas, NV (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Desert Research Inst. (DRI), Las Vegas, NV (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
OSTI Identifier:
1326640
Report Number(s):
DOE/NV/0000939-36
DOE/NV/0000939-36; TRN: US1700027
DOE Contract Number:
NA0000939
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; PLUTONIUM; RUNOFF; SOILS; VALLEYS; MONITORING; SEDIMENTS; DESERTS; SOLAR RADIATION; METEOROLOGY; NEVADA TEST SITE; SAMPLING; WIND; ENVIRONMENTAL TRANSPORT; CONTAMINATION; HUMIDITY; PARTICULATES; ATMOSPHERIC PRECIPITATIONS; ABUNDANCE; VELOCITY

Citation Formats

Miller, Julianne J., Nikolich, George, Mizell, Steve, McCurdy, Greg, and Campbell, Scott. NNSS Soils Monitoring: Plutonium Valley (CAU 366) FY2013 and FY2014. United States: N. p., 2016. Web. doi:10.2172/1326640.
Miller, Julianne J., Nikolich, George, Mizell, Steve, McCurdy, Greg, & Campbell, Scott. NNSS Soils Monitoring: Plutonium Valley (CAU 366) FY2013 and FY2014. United States. doi:10.2172/1326640.
Miller, Julianne J., Nikolich, George, Mizell, Steve, McCurdy, Greg, and Campbell, Scott. 2016. "NNSS Soils Monitoring: Plutonium Valley (CAU 366) FY2013 and FY2014". United States. doi:10.2172/1326640. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1326640.
@article{osti_1326640,
title = {NNSS Soils Monitoring: Plutonium Valley (CAU 366) FY2013 and FY2014},
author = {Miller, Julianne J. and Nikolich, George and Mizell, Steve and McCurdy, Greg and Campbell, Scott},
abstractNote = {The Desert Research Institute (DRI) is conducting a field assessment of the potential for contaminated soil transport from the Plutonium Valley Contamination Area (CA) as a result of wind transport and storm runoff in support of Nevada Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) efforts to complete regulatory closure of the contamination areas. The DRI work is intended to confirm the likely mechanism(s) of transport and determine the meteorological conditions that might cause movement of contaminated soils. Emphasis is given to collecting sediment transported by channelized storm runoff at the Plutonium Valley investigation sites. These data will inform closure plans that are being developed, which will facilitate appropriate closure design and postclosure monitoring. Desert Research Institute installed two meteorological monitoring stations south (station number 1) and north (station number 2) of the Plutonium Valley CA and a runoff sediment sampling station within the CA in 2011. Temperature, wind speed, wind direction, relative humidity, precipitation, solar radiation, barometric pressure, soil temperature, and airborne particulate concentration are collected at both meteorological stations. The maximum, minimum, and average or total (as appropriate) for each of these parameters is recorded for each 10-minute interval. The sediment sampling station includes an automatically activated ISCO sampling pump with collection bottles for suspended sediment, which is activated when sufficient flow is present in the channel, and passive traps for bedload material that is transported down the channel during runoff events. This report presents data collected from these stations during FY2013 and FY2014.},
doi = {10.2172/1326640},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = 2016,
month = 9
}

Technical Report:

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  • The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), Nevada Site Office (NSO), Environmental Restoration Soils Activity has authorized the Desert Research Institute (DRI) to conduct field assessments of potential sediment transport of contaminated soil from Corrective Action Unit (CAU) 366, Area 11 Plutonium Valley Dispersion Sites Contamination Area (CA) during precipitation runoff events.
  • The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), Nevada Site Office (NSO), Environmental Restoration Soils Activity has authorized the Desert Research Institute (DRI) to conduct field assessments of potential sediment transport of contaminated soil from Corrective Action Unit (CAU) 366, Area 11 Plutonium Valley Dispersion Sites Contamination Area (CA) during precipitation runoff events. Field measurements at the T-4 Atmospheric Test Site (CAU 370) suggest that radionuclide-contaminated soils may have migrated along a shallow ephemeral drainage that traverses the site (NNSA/NSO, 2009). (It is not entirely clear how contaminated soils got into their present location at the T-4more » Site, but flow to the channel has been redirected and the contamination does not appear to be migrating at present.) Aerial surveys in selected portions of the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS) also suggest that radionuclide-contaminated soils may be migrating along ephemeral channels in Areas 3, 8, 11, 18, and 25 (Colton, 1999). In Area 11, several low-level airborne surveys of the Plutonium Valley Dispersion Sites (CAU 366) show plumes of Americium 241 (Am-241) extending along ephemeral channels (Figure 1, marker numbers 5 and 6) below Corrective Action Site (CAS) 11-23-03 (marker number 3) and CAS 11 23-04 (marker number 4) (Colton, 1999). Plutonium Valley in Area 11 of the NNSS was selected for the study because of the aerial survey evidence suggesting downstream transport of radionuclide-contaminated soil. The aerial survey (Figure 1) shows a well defined finger of elevated radioactivity (marker number 5) extending to the southwest from the southernmost detonation site (marker number 4). This finger of contamination overlies a drainage channel mapped on the topographic base map used for presentation of the survey data suggesting surface runoff as a likely cause of the contaminated area. Additionally, instrumenting sites strongly suspected of conveying soil from areas of surface contamination offers the most efficient means to confirm that surface runoff may transport radioactive contamination as a result of ambient precipitation/runoff events. Closure plans being developed for the CAUs on the NNSS may include post-closure monitoring for possible release of radioactive contaminants. Determining the potential for transport of radionuclide-contaminated soils under ambient meteorological conditions will facilitate an appropriate closure design and post-closure monitoring program.« less
  • Desert Research Institute (DRI) is conducting a field assessment of the potential for contaminated soil transport from the Plutonium Valley Contamination Area (CA) as a result of wind transport and storm runoff in support of National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) efforts to complete regulatory closure of the contamination areas. The DRI work is intended to confirm the likely mechanism(s) of transport and determine the meteorological conditions that might cause movement of contaminated soils. The emphasis of the work is on collecting sediment transported by channelized storm runoff at the Plutonium Valley investigation sites. These data will inform closure plans thatmore » are being developed, which will facilitate the appropriate closure design and post-closure monitoring. In 2011, DRI installed two meteorological monitoring stations south (station #1) and north (station #2) of the Plutonium Valley CA and a runoff sediment sampling station within the CA. Temperature, wind speed, wind direction, relative humidity, precipitation, solar radiation, barometric pressure, soil temperature, and airborne particulate concentration are collected at both meteorological stations. The maximum, minimum, and average or total (as appropriate) for each of these parameters are recorded for each 10-minute interval. The sediment sampling station includes an automatically activated ISCO sampling pump with collection bottles for suspended sediment, which is activated when sufficient flow is present in the channel, and passive traps for bedload material that is transported down the channel during runoff events. This report presents data collected from these stations during fiscal year (FY) 2015.« less
  • Desert Research Institute (DRI) is conducting a field assessment of the potential for contaminated soil transport from the Plutonium Valley Contamination Area (CA) as a result of wind transport and storm runoff in support of National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) efforts to complete regulatory closure of the contamination areas. The DRI work is intended to confirm the likely mechanism(s) of transport and determine the meteorological conditions that might cause movement of contaminated soils. The emphasis of the work is on collecting sediment transported by channelized storm runoff at the Plutonium Valley investigation sites. These data will inform closure plans thatmore » are being developed, which will facilitate the appropriate closure design and post-closure monitoring.« less
  • The Desert Research Institute (DRI) is conducting a field assessment of the potential for contaminated soil to be transported from the Smoky Contamination Area (CA) as a result of storm runoff, which supports National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) efforts to complete regulatory closure of the Soils Corrective Action Unit (CAU) contamination areas. The work is intended to confirm the likely mechanism of transport and determine the meteorological conditions that might cause movement of contaminated soils, as well as determine the particle size fraction that is most closely associated with transported radionuclide-contaminated soils. These data will facilitate the appropriate closure designmore » and post-closure monitoring program.« less