Document Details

Investigation of the Enriched Uranium Chip Fire in Building 9212 on December 27, 1985
Subject Terms:
enriched uranium; uranium
Document Location:
DOE INFORMATION CENTER 1 Way, Oak Ridge, TN 37831; Eva Butler; Phone: 865-241-4780; Toll-Free: 800-382-6938, Option 6; FAX: 865-574-3521; Email:
Document Categories:
Health, Safety and Environment\Worker Health and Safety
Document Type:
Publication Date:
1986 Feb 24
Declassification Date:
1995 May 16
Declassification Status:
Document Pages:
Accession Number:
Document Number(s):
Y/AD-588 SR
Originating Research Org.:
Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant
OpenNet Entry Date:
1995 Aug 18
A basket of enriched uranium machine turnings ignited and burned in a new scrap-recycle process at the Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant. Such events, involving both depleted and enriched uranium, although not desirable, are not totally unexpected. However, in this instance the chemical operator lowered the basket of burning chips back into a tank of Freon 113, from which it had shortly before been removed. This action resulted in quantities of uranium chips, uranium oxide, and Freon 113 being violently discharged out of the basket and onto the floor. Freon 113 was vaporized and pyrolized by the high-temperature uranium metal, with dispersion of significant quantities of vapor and smoke. Interim action were taken, prior to restart of chip-cleaning operations, to minimize the potential for future chip fires.

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