Nuclear Decommissioning Authority
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Gemini containers return to action

The first active shipment of legacy waste drums from Magnox Harwell to Sellafield has been completed using the NDA’s Type B Gemini container fleet following a multi-million pound refurbishment.

Around 800 concrete-lined drums of Intermediate Level Waste will be transferred over the next three years for interim safe storage at Sellafield under the project, which forms a critical part of the NDA’s Nuclear Materials Transfer (NMT) programme, ahead of eventual disposal in a Geological Disposal Facility (GDF).

As part of Nuclear Waste Services’ Type B programme, the three-strong Gemini fleet of specialist packages spent two years in France with ORANO NPS undergoing a condition assessment and refurbishment before undergoing extensive Site Acceptance Testing at Sellafield and Harwell to ensure their readiness for a return to service.

Steve Chester, NWS Type B Programme Manager, yesterday said:

The Gemini fleet was brought back into service specifically for its role in this project and the launch of shipments is a major milestone for the NDA Site Decommissioning and National Waste Management Strategy, its Nuclear Material Transfer Programme, and for NWS’s Type B Packaging Programme.

Teamwork proved vital to the success of the project with an integrated programme/ project management strategic approach adopted, led by NWS, with Sellafield, Magnox and ORANO NPS, to manage risk and respective site interfaces, and drive efficiencies wherever possible.

Intermediate Level Waste is loaded into a Gemini container.

Darren Holt, NWS Gemini Project Manager, yesterday said:

It is testament to the collaborative efforts and professionalism of all three site teams culminating in the successful return to service of the TN Gemini package and demonstrates the benefits of a fully integrated and collaborative approach to delivery.

Samantha Berryman, Senior Project Manager at Magnox, yesterday said:

This project has been an excellent example of teamwork, both within Magnox, the wider NDA estate and overseas. Learning from Experience has been readily shared culminating in a number of safety improvements and process optimisation.


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