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November 7, 2017-Radiation Exposure Guidance

On November 13th, 2017, posted in: Uncategorized

Have you ever wondered what the American Dental Association and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommend concerning dental radiographic examinations?


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The NRC has decided to extend the public comment period for 30 calendar days to allow more time for members of the public to develop and submit their comments concerning a Petition for Rulemaking (PRM) received from Matthew McKinley on behalf of the Organization of Agreement States (OAS). The public comment period was scheduled to close on November 6, 2017. The new due date for comments is December 6, 2017. More information on this may be found at <https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2017-11-06/pdf/2017-24122.pdf>

On June 27, 2017, West Virginia proposed a new rule, 64-23A, TENORM. The requirements of this rule series are designed to control the receipt, possession, use, transfer, and disposal of sources of radiation by a registrant so the total dose to an individual, including doses resulting from all sources of radiation other than background radiation, does not exceed the standards for protection against radiation prescribed by W.Va. Code R. § 64-23-6. This rule applies to any person who receives, possesses, uses, processes, transfers, distributes, or disposes of technologically enhanced naturally occurring radioactive material (TENORM). This rule series establishes radiation protection standards for TENORM. On Sept 11, 2017, they withdrew the proposed rulemaking. See the details on their webpage – West Virginia Secretary of State Administrative Law.

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November 7, 2017 NRC Guidance Documents

On November 13th, 2017, posted in: Uncategorized

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has announced the availability of a draft guidance document concerning Yttrium-90 Microsphere Brachytherapy Sources and Devices TheraSphere® and SIR-Spheres®. NRC is requesting submittal of comments on this document by January 8, 2018. The document revises guidance for licenses authorizing the use of Yttrium-90 (Y–90) Microsphere Brachytherapy Sources and Devices TheraSphere® and SIRSpheres®. The NRC is requesting public comment on the draft revision of the licensing guidance (Rev. 10). The document has been revised to significantly update the criteria for training and experience, medical event reporting, inventory requirement specifications, and waste disposal issues. The revised guidance document also provides new information regarding cremation and autopsy. This guidance is intended for use by NRC applicants, NRC licensees, and the NRC staff. More information on this may be found at Government Printing Office: Federal Register / Vol 82, NO. 214


The NRC issued for public comment draft regulatory guide (DG), DG–8056, ‘‘Instructions for Recording and Reporting Occupational Radiation Dose Data.’’

This DG is a proposed Revision 4 to Regulatory Guide (RG) 8.7 of the same name.

The DG addresses issues that were identified after Revision 3 was issued in December 2016. The DG reinstates the longstanding staff position concerning a licensee’s consideration of prior occupational dose when making prospective occupational dose monitoring determinations. The DG retains the guidance from Revision 3 on completing NRC Form 4, ‘‘Cumulative Occupational Dose History,’’

and NRC Form 5, ‘‘Occupational Dose Record for a Monitoring Period.’’ Submit comments by December 15, 2017. More information on this may be found at Federal Register /Vol. 82, No. 198

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October 28, 2016 – Updates on Temporary Hold – On this date, the radiation-related news and regulatory updates that take place regularly on the Plexus-NSD web site will cease for a short period of time.  Changes to the site, its content and navigation are forthcoming, at which time updates will resume.  In the interim, if you have any questions, please Contact Plexus-NSD.

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October 27, 2016 – 81 FR 74828 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Exelon Generation Company, LLC.; LaSalle County Station, Units 1 and 2; License Renewal – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has issued renewed facility operating license Nos. NPF-11 and NPF-18 to Exelon Generation Company, LLC (Exelon or the licensee), the operator of LaSalle County Station, Units 1 and 2. Renewed facility operating license Nos. NPF-11 and NPF-18 authorize the operation of LaSalle County Station, Units 1 and 2 by the licensee at reactor core power levels not in excess of 3546 megawatts thermal in accordance with the provisions of the renewed licenses and technical specifications until April 17, 2042 and December 16, 2043, respectively. The NRC prepared a safety evaluation report, a final supplemental environmental impact statement (FSEIS), and a record of decision (ROD) that support its decision to issue renewed facility operating license Nos. NPF-11 and NPF-18.

October 27, 2016 – 81 FR 74818-74819 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Southern Nuclear Operating Company, Inc.; Joseph M. Farley Nuclear Plant, Units 1 and 2 – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has granted the request of the Southern Nuclear Operating Company, Inc. (SNC–the licensee) to withdraw its license amendment application dated November 24, 2014, as supplemented on September 28, 2015; March 3, 2016; and July 25, 2016, for proposed amendments to Renewed Facility Operating License Nos. NPF 2 and NPF 8 for the Joseph M. Farley Nuclear Plant, Units 1 and 2, respectively, located in Houston County, Alabama. The application contained 24 requests. Twenty-three of those requests were addressed in NRC letter dated August 3, 2016. The amendments adopted previously approved Technical Specifications Task Force Travelers and made two changes not associated with Travelers. A request to incorporate TSTF-312-A, Revision 1, “Administratively Control Containment Penetrations,” has been withdrawn by SNC in a letter dated October 17, 2016.

October 27, 2016 – 81 FR 74819-74820 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Southern Nuclear Operating Company, Vogtle Electric Generating Plant, Units 3 and 4; Passive Core Cooling System (PXS) Design Changes To Address Potential Gas Intrusion – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is granting an exemption to allow a departure from the certification information of Tier 1 of the generic design control document (DCD) and is issuing License Amendment No. 55 to Combined Licenses (COL), NPF-91 and NPF-92. The COLs were issued to Southern Nuclear Operating Company, Inc., and Georgia Power Company, Oglethorpe Power Corporation, MEAG Power SPVM, LLC, MEAG Power SPVJ, LLC, MEAG Power SPVP, LLC, Authority of Georgia, and the City of Dalton, Georgia (the licensee); for construction and operation of the Vogtle Electric Generating Plant (VEGP) Units 3 and 4, located in Burke County, Georgia. The granting of the exemption allows the changes to Tier 1 information asked for in the amendment. Because the acceptability of the exemption was determined in part by the acceptability of the amendment, the exemption and amendment are being issued concurrently.

October 27, 2016 – 81 FR 74820-74822 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Entergy Nuclear Operations, Inc.; FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is issuing an exemption in response to a January 15, 2016, request from Entergy Nuclear Operations, Inc. (Entergy or the licensee), from certain regulatory requirements. The exemption would permit a certified fuel handler to approve the emergency suspension of security measures for James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant (JAF) during certain emergency conditions or during severe weather. The exemption will be effective after JAF has submitted the certifications that it has permanently ceased power operation and has permanently removed fuel from the reactor vessel.

October 27, 2016 – 81 FR 74822-74828 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Purdue University Reactor – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is considering renewal of Facility Operating License No. R-87, held by Purdue University (the applicant), for the continued operation of the Purdue University Reactor (PUR-1), located in West Lafayette, Tippecanoe County, Indiana for an additional 20 years. In connection with the renewed license, the applicant is also seeking a power increase from 1 kilowatt thermal (kW(t)) to a licensed power level of 12 kW(t). The NRC is issuing an environmental assessment (EA) and finding of no significant impact (FONSI) associated with the renewal of the license.

October 27, 2016 – 81 FR 74779-74780 – DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY – Office of Nuclear Energy; Request for Information on Approaches Involving Private Initiatives for Consolidated Interim Storage Facilities – The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), Office of Nuclear Energy, released on its Web site a Request for Information (RFI) on Private Initiatives (PIs) for Consolidated Interim Storage Facilities. The purpose of the RFI is to gather input on the role of PIs for private consolidated interim storage facilities (ISF) services as part of an
integrated waste management system.

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October 27, 2016 – Press Pieces

On October 27th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

October 27, 2016 – The Star – Future of MOX cautiously optimistic – Last month, Russia’s decision to suspend the Plutonium Management and Disposition Agreement with the U.S. left the future of South Carolina’s Mixed Oxide Fuel Fabrication Facility hanging in the balance. But experts say the future of the beleaguered facility at the Savannah River Site remains cautiously optimistic. U.S. Nuclear Infrastructure Council’s David Blee said it’s important to look at several factors surrounding the PMDA suspension. “It’s important to recognize that Russia suspended the PMDA and did not terminate the agreement, that’s an important distinction,” he said.

October 27, 2016 – Archinect.com – Ornament and Extinction in the Nuclear Era – In 1981, a group of experts from various fields—from architecture to geology to semiotics—convened to work on what is likely the most difficult and important prompt ever assigned: design the façade of a massive complex intended to house the largest stockpile of nuclear waste in the world. Rather than face a street, this façade would point towards the sky: the sole visible element of building extending deep into the ground. No mere plasterwork would do; rather, this work of ornament would have to last for somewhere between ten thousand and a millions years, this work of ornament would have to last for somewhere between ten thousand and a millions yearswhich is much longer than any work of architecture has ever lasted. And while most façades are designed to be inviting, the primary program for the marker system of the Yucca Mountain repository of nuclear waste was to keep people away. Since becoming the first and only country to ever unleash on other humans the force of a neutron split in two, the United States has steadily accumulated enough nuclear waste to existentially threaten life on the planet—with nowhere to safely contain it. Up until very recently, the US government was proceeding with plans to build its first long-term storage site for the waste in Yucca Mountain, Nevada. The building complex itself—a giant artificial cavern hollowed out of the low-slung mountain—would eventually be filled in by 108,000 regular shipments of spent nuclear waste. This would take forty years, and each shipment would carry 1,000 pounds of radioactive material while passing through nearly every state. Then the whole thing would be capped with concrete.

October 27, 2016 – Northumberland Today – Court costs to be paid in Trust Fund case – Everyone in Port Hope is paying for the ongoing court action over the Federal Government Trust Fund money paid to the former Hope Township (Ward 2) to host historic, low-level, radioactive waste, says a local citizens’ group. Port Hope taxpayers in both Ward 1 (the urban area before the amalgamation in 2001) and rural Ward 2 area, as well as the Trust Fund itself, have all been ordered by the court to pay costs related to court action which found the Municipality of Port Hope misspent part of the multi-million dollar Trust Fund set up by the former Hope Township. In a decision issued Oct. 21, Mr. Justice J.R. McCarthy ordered that the former Hope Township Mayor (now Ward 2) Ian Angus,who brought the court action with the late Dean Ross, be paid almost $90,000 in court costs.

October 27, 2016 – Jalopnik – Nuclear Waste Travels With One Heck Of An Entourage – Do you compost? Rinse and separate your recycling? Yeah, getting rid of garbage is a pain. Unless your garbage is nuclear waste. Getting rid of that is apparently a production of epic proportions. YouTuber Robert Fullone couldn’t help but notice this colossal convoy and posse of dudes in orange vests taking up both lanes of his street, so he was kind enough to give the internet a little tour of what he says is a nuclear waste disposal outfit working out of “West Valley,” which I assume is referring to West Valley Nuclear Services near Buffalo, New York. After nuclear fuel has spent years in a reactor generating heat which becomes electricity, it ends up being “spent” and no longer yields power but remains very hot and radioactive. At that point it gets put into a cask like the one in this video and eventually buried at a designated dumping facility somewhere around the country.

October 27, 2016 – Times Argus – NRC gives Entergy good grades – Federal inspectors from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission gave Entergy Nuclear good grades for its handling of the radioactive water that continues to seep into a below-grade building during the early stages of the decommissioning of the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant. There were no safety findings included in the quarter inspection report, which was released Monday by the NRC. The report states that Entergy’s handling of the slightly radioactive water, which is classified as low-level radioactive waste, was satisfactory. All other areas reviewed by the NRC inspectors, which included an inspection of the spent-fuel pool, were given approval.

October 27, 2016 – Medical Physics Web – FBG sensor improves brachytherapy accuracy – A new needle-tracking device for high-dose-rate (HDR) brachytherapy has been developed by researchers from the University Medical Center Utrecht. Compared with MRI-based tracking, the novel device – which uses fibre Bragg grating sensors – offers the potential for both improved accuracy and precision, as well as a lower latency and higher update rate (Med. Phys. 43 5288). Used in the treatment of cancers including breast, prostate and skin cancer, HDR brachytherapy uses small radioactive sources that are temporarily delivered to treatment sites through small needles or catheters inserted directly into, or nearby, target tumours. To optimize dose distributions, needle positions and exposure times are carefully selected before treatment, but such dose plans may be disrupted by both needle positioning errors and patient movements and/or anatomical changes.

October 27, 2016 – Herald Sun – Australia to play role in $19 billion new clean energy bid – AUSTRALIAN scientists looking for the “holy grail” of clean energy production will design vital components for a $19 billion fusion energy generator in France that seeks to mimic the sun’s power on Earth. The ITER Tokamak project in Saint-Paul-lez-Durance, the world’s largest science-­engineering project, will try to generate temperatures of 150 million Celsius, 10 times the core temperature of the sun, to test the viability of large-scale fusion generation as a clean energy source. “Fusion is the holy grail for energy production and, if achieved at a large scale, would answer some of the world’s most pressing questions relating to sustainability, climate change and security,” Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation CEO Dr Adi Paterson said.

October 27, 2016 – Indian Express – Spooky! There’s a reason why the phone no 0888 888 888 has been suspended — all its users are dead – As you may know, there are a lot of hotels which do not have floor number 13 or even a room number 13 because it’s considered haunted and inauspicious. Similarly, a Bulgarian number has been suspended forever after the company observed a pattern. A pattern where all its owners died. The jinxed phone number is 0888 888 888. The first owner of the number was the CEO of the issuing company Mobitel himself, Vladimir Grashnov. Reportedly, he died of cancer in 2001. According to Mail Online, his cancer was rumoured to have been caused by a ‘business rival using radioactive poisoning’.

October 27, 2016 – Digital Journal – Portable X-Ray And CT Scan Devices Market to grow at a CAGR of 7.5% from 2013 to 2020 – According to a new study by Hexa Research, the global Portable X-Ray and CT Scan Devices Market will grow at a CAGR of 7.5% from 2013 to 2020. The demand will be driven by growing cases of accidents and health conditions necessitating orthopedic, cardiovascular or brain-related investigation.

October 27, 2016 – The Standard – Nuclear terror as 12 schools evacuated over lump of radioactive uranium found in science class – Twelve schools have been evacuated after a lump of uranium was found in a science classroom sparking nuclear terror. The discovery was made when antinuclear campaigner Thomas Neff was giving a lecture to pupils about an old wristwatch from the 1960s with a radium dial. The numerals on the watch contain the material to help them to glow in the dark and were created when little was known about the damage caused by radiation. But as he passed a collection of rocks, minerals and fossils that were on display in the classroom, Neff’s Geiger counter almost “exploded”. The class was evacuated and experts called in and discovered that one of the rocks was a uranium rock.

October 27, 2016 – Indaily.com.au – Olympic Dam an “excellent” nuke storage site, inquiry told – Geologist and academic Victor Gostin, an honorary visiting research fellow at Adelaide University, gave evidence yesterday to a parliamentary committee examining the findings of the Scarce Royal Commission, which recommended the swift establishment of a high-level nuclear waste repository. Gostin noted it was a geological professional “consensus” that the Stuart Shelf region, including Olympic Dam, was an ideal place for such a facility to be based. “When it comes to the deep geological site… [Olympic Dam is] the site that I would imagine would be an excellent site,” he said.

October 27, 2016 – PhysOrg – Robots help position interventional needles – Finding the ideal position for interventional needles – as used in biopsies, for instance – is a difficult and time-consuming process. This can now be performed automatically, using a robotic arm to place a needle guide for the doctor at the optimal insertion point. With robotic assistance, doctors need five minutes to position the needle, as opposed to 30 minutes with conventional techniques. The solution will be shown at the MEDICA trade fair in Düsseldorf from November 14 to 17, 2016 (Hall 10, Booth G05). An ultrasound shows a shadow on the liver – but is it a tumor? Often, the only way to conclusively answer this question is to perform a biopsy, a procedure in which a doctor uses a long needle to remove a piece of the suspected tissue to be sent to a laboratory for testing. However, placing the biopsy needle with precision is far from easy. On one hand, the doctor needs to be sure of reaching the suspected tissue – and not healthy tissue just millimeters to the side. On the other hand, the needle must not damage veins, nerve pathways, and organs such as the lungs, and cannot penetrate bony structures such as ribs. To obtain an overview, doctors begin by performing a com- puted tomography scan, which they use to maneuver the needle to the correct posi- tion. The same challenges arise in treatments that use needles to direct heating, cooling, or high-energy beams into the cancerous tissue, thereby destroying the tumor.

October 27, 2016 – Space.com – Dusty with a Chance of Radiation: Mars Weather Forecasting Will Be Critical – Weather on Earth is often a hazard for travelers; after all, snowstorms, hurricanes, floods and other events can make it dangerous to drive or fly. Space travelers have a similar problem when dealing with space weather. As NASA plans to send humans to Mars in the 2030s, work is underway to study how the space weather environment will impact their journey. Explosive “storms” that erupt from the surface of the sun regularly create showers of harmful radiation. Part of NASA’s plan for a trip to the Red Planet will have to include space weather forecasting, monitoring and safety measures.

October 27, 2016 – Russia & India Report – Russia plans to test elements of new nuclear engine on ISS – Russia’s state space corporation Roscosmos has announced a tender for developing proposals on testing key elements of a megawatt-class nuclear propulsion system, including aboard the International Space Station (ISS), according to the tender documentation posted on the state procurement website on Thursday. Specifically, Roscosmos expects to receive “proposals on the rational structure of key elements, systems and items of a perspective nuclear propulsion unit intended for tests in outer space, including with the use of the ISS’ Russian segment.

October 27, 2016 – Forbes – Texting While Driving Is Scary, Radiation Should Not Be – The public may not be the best judge of risk. If you ask someone what they are afraid of, they will say many things that are generally not dangerous, like radiation, fluoridated water, or vaccinations. We are only just beginning to realize that texting while driving is really a big problem, or that overuse of opioid medications are leading to a national epidemic of heroine deaths. And these two only because of a flood of advertisements and documentaries on the subjects. This is an important issue. Without understanding what real risks are, well-intentioned policies can backfire, and the real risks can go unaddressed. This is no better illustrated than in the present presidential campaign where unfounded fear and misinformation have played such a large role. An obvious example is the fear of radiation and nuclear power. This fear has jeopardized our choices to address climate change, has hurt the nuclear industry, and caused us to unnecessarily spend billions of dollars protecting against radiation at levels that are quite safe.

October 27, 2016 – Daily Star – ‘Putin testing weapons?’ Flaming green ‘meteorite’ spotted hurtling over Russia – The clip shows the eerie object hurtling over stunned motorists before landing with a huge flash. It appears to explode multiple times as it enters the planet’s atmosphere. Witnesses say it crashed to the ground near Siberia’s Lake Baikal. One social media user wrote: “The meteorite must be made up of a lot of iron and chrome. “That would be why it looked so green.” “I’m calling Putin is testing weapons on this one” The meteorite made no noise at all as it landed and the spooky silence led some to fear it was a new secret weapon. Other witnesses even went as far to think it was an attack from Russia’s enemies in the Ukraine or Syria and that a war had started.

October 27, 2016 – RTE.ie – Healy-Rae blames nuclear tests for hole in ozone layer – Independent TD Danny Healy-Rae has claimed in the Dáil that the hole in the ozone layer was caused by nuclear testing in the Pacific Ocean 50 years ago. He said “untruths have been bandied about” about climate change for years as he addressed today’s debate on the ratification of the Paris Climate Change Agreement, an agreement that he is “very worried about”. The Kerry TD said: “There was changes in the climate way back in times when there was no industrialisation and way less animals on farms and no intensification of farming. “Yet we had intense heat, long periods of very cold, wet weather which culminated in many lives being lost in the famine in the 1740s, caused by two years of incessant rain and extremely cold winters.” “El Nino and the Gulf Stream played a significant part in climate change going back the centuries. There have been a lot untruths bandied about going back for many years. “They told us about the ozone layer and there was greenhouse gases from cans of hairspray or whatever but they never told us that it was nuclear testing in the Pacific Ocean 50 years ago actually caused the serious damage to the Ozone layer.

October 27, 2016 – Sputnik International – Tests of Russia’s Nuclear Fuel in Dutch Research Reactor Successful – Russian nuclear fuel produced by the Rosatom successfully passed tests in the High Flux Reactor (HFR), Director General of the NCCP Mikhail Zarubin said Thursday. © Photo: PixabayRussia, Egypt Could Sign Dabaa Nuclear Plant Construction Deal in DecemberMOSCOW (Sputnik) — Nuclear fuel produced at the Novosibirsk Chemical Concentrates Plant (NCCP), which is part of Rosatom State Nuclear Energy Corporation has successfully, passed tests in the High Flux Reactor (HFR) located in the Dutch city of Petten, Director General of the NCCP Mikhail Zarubin said Thursday. In 2014, the NCCP and the Dutch Nuclear Research and consultancy Group Petten signed a contract on delivery of fuel for the Dutch research HFR.

October 27, 2016 – Chicago Tribune – Nuclear-armed foes unite against a UN call to shed their weapons – For all the divisions among world powers, one concern unites Russia and the U.S., India and Pakistan, North Korea and Israel at the United Nations: Keeping their nuclear weapons. Those nuclear-armed states and the three others — China, France and the U.K. — are working to head off a resolution calling for a global conference to establish a binding “legal process” to ban the manufacture, possession, stockpiling and use of the weapons. They’re bucking a popular cause backed by 50 nations, from Ireland to Brazil, which say the measure could win as many as 120 votes in the 193-member General Assembly. While the resolution to be voted on Thursday would be non-binding, opposing its call for a nuclear-free world is awkward for world leaders, and none more so than U.S. President Barack Obama. He’s preparing to leave office seven years after he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in large part for what the award panel called his “vision of, and work for, a world without nuclear weapons.”

October 27, 2016 – Kyodo News – Hitachi chief hints at integrating 3 major firms’ nuclear power businesses – Hitachi Ltd. President Toshiaki Higashihara on Thursday hinted at the possible integration of the nuclear power businesses currently run by the industrial conglomerate, Toshiba Corp. and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. Touching on the possibility of integrating the nuclear fuel businesses of the three firms, Higashihara said at a press conference, “It’s not just about (nuclear fuel). The time will come when we need to think about the whole (of the nuclear power business).” Most of the country’s nuclear power plants have been offline amid public opposition and safety concerns following the March 2011 major earthquake and tsunami in northeastern Japan, and companies in the nuclear power business have been facing tough times in terms of profitability.

October 27, 2016 – Business Green – Public backing for nuclear and shale gas falls to record low – Public support for nuclear energy and fracking have hit some of the lowest ever levels, according to the government’s quarterly Public Attitudes Tracker survey, released today. Support for nuclear dipped three per cent to hit its lowest level of 33 per cent, with 26 per cent in opposition. Since the survey began in 2012 support for nuclear has only dropped this low once before, in August 2015. It is the first indication of how public attitudes towards nuclear energy may have changed since the government signed the contract to build a new £18bn nuclear power station at Hinkley Point in September. Last quarter’s survey, which was undertaken before Hinkley was approved, showed support for nuclear generation at 36 per cent, with 22 per cent in opposition.

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October 26, 2016 – 81 FR 74484-74485 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Independent Assessment of Nuclear Material Control and Accounting Systems – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is issuing Revision 1 to Regulatory Guide (RG) 5.51, “Independent Assessment of Nuclear Material Control and Accounting Systems.” Revision 1 is based on experience gained since RG 5.51 was initially published in June 1975, and reflects revisions to the NRC’s material control & accounting (MC&A) regulations that have been made since 1975. Updates include use of the term “independent assessment” to replace “management review,” and use of the term “inventory difference” to replace “material unaccounted for.”

October 26, 2016 – 81 FR 74414-74415 – DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY – Environmental Management Site-Specific Advisory Board, Northern New Mexico – This notice announces a meeting of the Environmental Management Site-Specific Advisory Board (EM SSAB), Northern New Mexico. The Federal Advisory Committee Act (Pub. L. 92-463, 86 Stat. 770) requires that public notice of this meeting be announced in the Federal Register. DATES: Tuesday, November 15, 2016–1:00 p.m.-5:15 p.m. ADDRESSES: El Monte Sagrado, 317 Kit Carson Road, Taos, New Mexico 87571. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Menice Santistevan, Northern New Mexico Citizens’ Advisory Board (NNMCAB), 94 Cities of Gold Road, Santa Fe, NM 87506. Phone (505) 995-0393; Fax (505) 989-1752 or Email: Menice.Santistevan@em.doe.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Purpose of the Board: The purpose of the Board is to make recommendations to DOE-EM and site management in the areas of environmental restoration, waste management, and related activities.

October 26, 2016 – 81 FR 74413-74414 – DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY – DOE/NSF High Energy Physics Advisory Panel – This notice announces a meeting of the DOE/NSF High Energy Physics Advisory Panel (HEPAP). The Federal Advisory Committee Act (Pub. L. 92-463, 86 Stat. 770) requires that public notice of these meetings be announced in the Federal Register. DATES: Thursday, December 1, 2016–8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.; Friday, December 2, 2016–8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ADDRESSES: Hilton Washington DC North/Gaithersburg, 620 Perry Parkway, Gaithersburg, MD 20877. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: John Kogut, Executive Secretary; High Energy Physics Advisory Panel (HEPAP); U.S. Department of Energy; SC-25/Germantown Building, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585-1290; Telephone: 301-903-1298. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Purpose of Meeting: To provide advice and guidance on a continuing basis to the Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation on scientific priorities within the field of high energy physics research.

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October 26, 2016 – Press Pieces

On October 26th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

October 26, 2016 – TBO.com – Nuclear Regulatory Commission okays license to Duke Energy for mothballed Levy nuclear power plant – A decade after deciding to build new nuclear power plants in Levy County and three years after abandoning the project, Duke Energy has been issued operating licenses for the mothballed site from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. While Duke won’t do anything with these licenses for now, the NRC approvals can be used for years into the future to restart the project if the economics of nuclear power once again make sense to Duke. The NRC last week announced it had approved staff members issuing two “combined operating licenses” for the site near Inglis in Levy County.

October 26, 2016 – Wired – X-Rays Are Revealing the Mysterious Writings in Mummy Coffins – It’s a sleepy summer Friday at Lawrence Berkeley Lab’s Advanced Light Source. The particle accelerator operates at a constant, gentle hum—quieter than you’d expect for a synchrotron that whirls electrons to just short of the speed of light. Most of the 40 experimental beam lines lie empty. But one X-ray beam is a hub of activity—an arts and crafts session, by the look of it. The researchers crowding the narrow galley huddle over scraps of papyrus paper, streaking them with metallic paint markers, pencils, and pens. They roll the samples up onto dowels, or crumple them up, or fasten them to each other in layers. The idea? Devise creative ways to hide the ink out of sight, and see if X-rays can uncover it.

October 26, 2016 – ABS-CBN News – 12 pass radiologic technology exams in Middle East – Ten examinees passed the Radiologic Technologist Licensure Examination, and two passed the X-Ray Technologist Licensure Examination given by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) in the Middle East. A total of 36 took the Radiologic Technologist Licensure Examination, while 12 took the X-Ray Technologist Licensure Examination, which was given by the Board of Radiologic Technology in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates; Al-Khobar, Jeddah and Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia; Doha, Qatar and in Kuwait in September 2016.

October 26, 2016 – Professional Pensions – MPs to debate advice given to pensioners at UK Atomic Energy Agency – MPs are to debate the quality of advice given to pensioners that transferred into a defined benefit (DB) scheme set up after part of the UK’s nuclear industry was privatised. In September 1996, the commercial arm of the UK Atomic Energy Authority was floated on the stock exchange. The AEAT Pension Scheme was set up with a new company called AEA Technology as the sponsor. This scheme entered assessment for the Pension Protection Fund in November 2012 after the sponsor went bust.

October 26, 2016 – KSEBOA.org – Kudankulam is still the cheapest of all foreign-built nuclear plants – Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant’s unit 3 and 4, for which Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin on 15-10-2016 laid the foundation through video-conferencing, are expected to sell electricity at ₹3.90 a kilowatt hour (kWh), according to World Association of Nuclear Operators (WANO). KKNP 3 and 4, with a net capacity of 917 MW each, will cost ₹39,849 crore ($6.5 billion) to build. The first two units, the second of which was connected to the grid only in August 2016, cost ₹17,270 crore, but the cost is under revision to ₹22,462 crore. The Kudankulam plant’s equipment and fuel are supplied by Russia’s State Atomic Energy Corporation (Rosatom). Despite costing twice as much as the first two units, 3 and 4 will still sell their electricity at the same price.

October 26, 2016 – MarketWatch – Why Hillary Clinton sold America’s uranium – Hey — had you heard that uranium is an incredibly scarce resource and that Russia is buying it all up? No, me neither. But that’s what I’ve discovered on the campaign trail. Apparently a few years back Crooked Hillary “SPECTRE” Clinton betrayed the country — yet again — by selling 20% of our precious uranium supply to Russia in return for yet more payola. As secretary of state she “approved” a deal to sell Uranium One, a company that controlled a fifth of U.S. uranium production, to the Russian atomic agency Rosatom. In return she and Bill received vast amounts of payoffs from the Kremlin and related interests — most notably a $500,000 speaker fee for Bill from a Moscow-based investment bank, which works out at about $250,000 net of tax.

October 26, 2016 – Metro.co.uk – Pupils evacuated after rock in classroom turned out to be radioactive uranium – A radioactive rock sat as part of a classroom display without anyone noticing for dozens of science lessons. Nobody had realised that it was a lump of uranium, the metallic element which is used in nuclear reactors and even to produce atomic bombs. It was giving off thousands of millisiverts of radiation into the school, a far higher amount than occurs naturally, but teachers only found out when an anti-nuclear campaigner Thomas Neff came into the science lab at Missionaries of the Sacred Heart School in Salzburg, Austria, to give a talk. To help in his lecture, he brought a watch with him from the Sixties, which contained small amounts of radium so that its dial would light up in the dark. They were popular several decades ago, when people did not know as much about the dangers of radiation.

October 26, 2016 – New Haven Register – ‘Residual radioactive contamination’ found at former New Haven Clock Company site – Those radium painted dials on millions of wristwatches produced in the city at the New Haven Clock Company are once again a “hot” item. An environmental review of the long-closed factory, which at one point employed as many as 1,500 people, found radium-226 in parts of what is left of the sprawling campus on Hamilton, St. John and Wallace streets in the Wooster Square neighborhood. Helen Rosenberg, an economic development officer, said the report by the environmental engineering firm Fuss and O’Neill found “residual radioactive contamination present throughout portions of the building.”

October 26, 2016 – Greeley Tribune – Weld County Health Department offers free radon test kits for residents – The Weld County Department of Public Health and Environment is offering free radon test kits to Weld County residents with a limit of one per household, according to a news release. About 46 percent of all homes in Colorado are estimated to have high levels of radon, which is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers. Radon is an odorless, colorless, radioactive gas that results from the natural decay of uranium. It typically moves up through the ground and into homes through cracks and other holes in a house’s foundation, according to the release.

October 26, 2016 – Independent Online – Is microwave food unhealthy? Top tech experts give it the all clear – Microwave ovens allow us to bring food straight out of the freezer and have it on the table, ready to eat, in the space of a few minutes. You can quickly thaw a frozen meal or warm up something you cooked the day before, thanks to the microwave radiation inside the oven, which has a frequency of 2.45 gigahertz. It does not add anything to the food apart from heat. “Microwaved food is harmless for your health,” says nutrition expert Margret Morlo.

October 26, 2016 – OnMedica – Radiotherapy equipment to be upgraded, NHS chief pledges – Radiotherapy equipment in England is to be upgraded, thanks to a £130 million investment over the next two years, NHS chief Simon Stevens has announced. Around 4 in 10 of all NHS cancer patients are treated with radiotherapy, which typically uses high-energy radiation from a linear accelerator (‘Linac’). Over the next two years, older Linac radiotherapy equipment being used by hospitals across the country will be upgraded or replaced. It is recommended that Linacs are replaced after around 10 years, but the last time there was national investment in NHS radiotherapy machines was in the early 2000s.

October 26, 2016 – utilities-me.com – UAE’s nuclear authority approves budget for 2017 – The Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation’s (FANR) board of management has approved its budget for 2017 at a meeting chaired by the board chairman, Abdulla Nasser Al Suwaidi. The senior management provided the board with updates to key FANR activities, including the status of its review of the application for an operating license for units 1 and 2 of the Barakah Nuclear Power Plant, which is now under construction in the western region of Abu Dhabi. The board also discussed the establishment of a decommissioning trust fund (DTF) to support the construction, operation and regulation of a radioactive waste management disposal facility in the UAE.

October 26, 2016 – Zawya – Bulgaria to pay $655 million to Russia over cancelled nuclear project – Bulgaria has agreed to pay about 600 million euros ($655 million) in compensation to Russia’s Atomstroyexport for the cancelled Belene nuclear power project, state energy company NEK said on Wednesday. An international arbitration court had ruled in June that Sofia should pay compensation for nuclear equipment it ordered from the Russian company before cancelling the 10 billion euros project in 2012.

October 26, 2016 – defenceWeb – Zimbabwe installing nuclear detectors at points of entry – Zimbabwe is installing nuclear detection devices at its ports of entry.The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has struck an agreement with Zimbabwe under which the Austria-headquartered global organisation will equip the country’s four international airports and 13 border points with nuclear detection facilities. The IAEA will invest $1.5 million in the project. On October 11 a trial-run of three radio-nuclide identification devices and 21 personal radiation detection gadgets, donated by the IAEA, was conducted at Victoria Falls International Airport and Victoria Falls Border Post. A workshop attended by IAEA nuclear security officer, Noor Fitriah Bakri and security sector representatives in Zimbabwe was held from October 10 to 14 in Victoria Falls. It was part of the first phase of the implementation of the project to strengthen the nuclear security detection systems in Zimbabwe.

October 26, 2016 – TechCentral.co.za – Treasury promises to block nuclear profligacy – National treasury will ensure it protects South Africa’s fiscal integrity with regard to South Africa’s nuclear procurement plan. Deputy finance minister Mcebisi Jonas told media on Wednesday that treasury will continue to play a role in the planning of the nuclear procurement programme. “We take a view that whatever happens with the nuclear project, it … won’t undermine the interests of the country as a whole,” he said. “As custodians of fiscal integrity, we will continue to play a critical role.” The big question around nuclear is whether it is even required, with the rise of cheap renewable energy.

October 26, 2016 – New York Post – US official thinks getting North Korea to give up nuclear bomb is ‘lost cause’ – The U.S. policy of trying to persuade North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons “is probably a lost cause” and the best that could be hoped for is a cap on the country’s nuclear capability, the Director of U.S. National Intelligence James Clapper said on Tuesday. However, underscoring conflicting views in the Obama administration, the State Department said U.S. policy was unchanged and continued to be to seek the “verifiable denuclearization” of the Korean peninsula. President Barack Obama has repeatedly stated that the United States will never accept North Korean as a nuclear-armed state.

October 26, 2016 – ARY News – Radioactive leak at Norway nuclear reactor – A nuclear research reactor in Norway suffered a minor radiation leak that is not believed to pose a threat to public health or the environment, Norwegian authorities said on Tuesday. The leak of radioactive iodine happened on Monday at the Institute for Energy Technology in Halden, in the country’s southeast, the Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority (NRPA) said in a statement on its website. “The leak of radioactivity was due to a technical failure when handling nuclear fuel inside the reactor hall. The amount of radioactivity is regarded as small,” said the statement. “According to the information NRPA has received so far, this discharge will not have any consequences for health or the environment outside the plant.”

October 26, 2016 – Asahi Shimbun – Paper sludge that polluted sea cleans up soil in Fukushima – Charcoal from paper mill sludge that once polluted the ocean here southwest of Tokyo could be used to restore contaminated land near the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant. An experiment in 2011 showed that the charcoal is effective in reducing radioactive substances in soil and preventing the absorption of cesium by plants, said research leader Ai Van Tran. Tran, 68, a doctor in agricultural science, was conducting the research for the Corelex Group that includes Corelex Shin-ei Mfg. Co., which has the largest share of recycled toilet paper in Japan. “We would be delighted if our byproduct, which was once a source of environmental pollution, is useful in decontamination. It will also contribute to reducing the waste from papermaking, so it is killing two birds with one stone,” said Satoshi Kurosaki, the president of the Corelex Shin-ei.

October 26, 2016 – The Japan Times – Namie radiation evacuees fear return – Weed-engulfed buildings and shuttered businesses paint an eerie picture of a coastal Japanese town abandoned after a monstrous earthquake and tsunami triggered meltdowns in the Fukushima nuclear plant. Namie, one of the communities hardest hit by the 2011 disaster, had 21,000 residents before they fled radiation spewing from the reactors 8 km away. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is now looking to repopulate the town as early as next year, a symbolic step toward recovery that might also help soften opposition to his government’s plan to restart Japan’s mostly mothballed nuclear industry. “The national and local governments are trying to send us back,” said Yasuo Fujita, 64, a sushi chef who lives alongside hundreds of other Fukushima evacuees in a modern high-rise in Tokyo more than 200 km away. “We do want to return — we were born and raised there. But can we make a living? Can we live next to the radioactive waste?”

October 26, 2016 – Washington Examiner – Moniz: US must decide its nuclear future in the next 5 years – Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz predicted Monday that major decisions about the nation’s nuclear energy sector are going to be coming in the next five years. Speaking at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Moniz said there’s going to be a great wave of nuclear energy facilities retiring in about 15 years. Decisions about whether to replace them must be made much earlier than that, he said. “In the utility business to replace that power, especially to replace that low carbon power, calls for capital allocations decisions are certainly on a decadal time scale,” he said. “In other words, in the next five years, we’re going to start much more facing up to those large capital planning decisions.” Moniz has been a supporter of increased nuclear power production in recent years, seeing it as a potentially lucrative low-carbon energy source that would help the nation meet its climate change goals.

October 26, 2016 – Brattleboro Reformer – Feds endorse Vermont Yankee fuel, waste handling – Federal inspectors are satisfied with Vermont Yankee’s environmental monitoring, spent fuel storage and handling of radiological waste – including contaminated water that had accumulated at the shut-down plant. A new report from a Nuclear Regulatory Commission inspection identifies “no findings of safety significance” at the Vernon facility. The NRC in 2015 terminated its resident inspector program at Vermont Yankee, which stopped producing power at the end of 2014. But the federal agency still conducts regular inspections at the plant, and the latest such quarterly survey ended Sept. 30.

October 26, 2016 – WAMC – NY Downstate Lawmakers Take Issue With Nuclear Subsidies – Letters have gone back and forth between seven state lawmakers and the chair of the New York State Public Service Commission. At issue is what the lawmakers say is an unfair statewide electric rate increase to subsidize upstate nuclear power plants. The issue is part of the PSC’s broader Clean Energy Standard. The PSC in August issued an order adopting the standard. Since then, seven state assemblymembers have banded together to voice their concern over the adoption of the zero emissions credit pertaining to upstate nuclear power plants. The Democrats from the Hudson Valley, Long Island, and New York City have written to PSC Chair Audrey Zibelman with their objection. One is Hudson Valley Assemblywoman Amy Paulin, who is chair of the Energy Committee.

October 26, 2016 – Aiken Standard – Future of MOX facility uncertain but optimistic, officials say – Last month, Russia’s decision to suspend the Plutonium Management and Disposition Agreement with the U.S. left the future of South Carolina’s Mixed Oxide Fuel Fabrication Facility hanging in the balance. But experts say the future of the beleaguered facility at the Savannah River Site remains cautiously optimistic. U.S. Nuclear Infrastructure Council’s David Blee said it’s important to look at several factors surrounding the PMDA suspension. “It’s important to recognize that Russia suspended the PMDA and did not terminate the agreement, that’s an important distinction,” he said.

October 26, 2016 – WEKU 88.9 – Citizens Group Rep Calls Proposed Radioactive Waste Agreement “Fair” – A leader of a Central Kentucky citizens group says there remain outstanding issues regarding the illegal dumping of low-level radioactive fracking waste at the Estill County landfill. A proposed agreement announced Friday by state Energy and Environment Cabinet includes a $95,000 civil penalty for Advance Disposal Services Blue Ridge Landfill. About two-thirds of that money would go for Radon monitoring and abatement at Estill County schools and at the landfill gate. Tom Hart with Concerned Citizens of Estill County says handling what he calls the “technologically enhanced natural occurring radioactive waste” or TENORN, already in the landfill remains a question. “It’s in that corrective action plan that they will propose what should be done with the TENORM,” he says.

October 26, 2016 – Power Engineering – Zion Nuclear Power Plant Decommissioning Project on Budget and Ahead of Schedule Six Years after the Project Started – EnergySolutions announced today that on September 30, 2016 its subsidiary, ZionSolutions, has successfully completed the 6th year of decommissioning the twin Unit Zion Nuclear Power Station with record setting performance. The project is on budget and currently reporting the decommissioning effort is 88% complete and several years ahead of the original 10 year schedule. The accelerated decommissioning schedule will directly translate into a lower overall decommissioning cost.

October 26, 2016 – Dothan Eagle – Test drilling for nuclear waste storage research proposed in Dale County – A proposed drilling site in Dale County would test the feasibility of storing nuclear waste in geologically similar areas, but no nuclear waste would be stored or used in tests on the site, according to a representative of Battelle, a private non-profit science and technology company. Steve Winberg, a program manager for Battelle, explained the proposed project at a meeting of the Dale County Commission Tuesday. Battelle wants to enter into an agreement with Southern Company to drill on about 20 acres of property owned by the company near Waterford Road. The hole would be 8.5 inches in diameter but would descend about three miles to Precambrian rock.

October 26, 2016 – Omaha World Herald – OPPD signed a $400 million contract with company that ran Fort Calhoun — terminating it will cost $5 million – OPPD began permanently shutting down the Fort Calhoun Nuclear Power Station on Oct. 24. It will cost the Omaha Public Power District $5 million to end what was supposed to be a 20-year contract with Exelon Generation, the Chicago-based nuclear operator that has managed day-to-day operations at Fort Calhoun since September 2012. That’s a fraction of the $20 million termination fee that the utility faced if it decided to end the agreement without cause, according to OPPD financial disclosures. In general terms, “termination for cause and certain other termination events” would have gotten OPPD off the hook without having to pay anything, annual reports and bond documents stated.

October 26, 2016 – Los Alamos Monitor – WIPP storage plan draws concern – A nuclear watchdog group raised concerns Friday with a plan to build above-ground storage of transuranic waste at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Carlsbad. The U.S. Department of Energy has applied for a permit with the New Mexico Environment Department for the new storage facility. Joni Arends of Concerned Citizens for Nuclear Safety said the DOE should be concentrating on ongoing safety issues at WIPP, not expanding the facility with another above ground, permanent waste facility at the site. WIPP already has a similar facility for the same purpose.

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October 24, 2016 – 81 FR 73153-73154 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – United States Department of the Interior; United States Geological Survey TRIGA Research Reactor – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) issued a renewal of Facility Operating License No. R-113, held by the United States Geological Survey (USGS or the licensee), for the continued operation of its USGS Training, Research, Isotope Production, General Atomics (TRIGA) research reactor (GSTR or the reactor) at a steady-state power level of 1.0 megawatt (MW) and a pulse power level as provided in the licensee’s Technical Specifications, for an additional 20 years. The GSTR facility is located on the property of the Denver Federal Center in Lakewood, Colorado.

October 24, 2016 – 81 FR 73148-73153 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Rhode Island Atomic Energy Commission; Rhode Island Nuclear Science Center Reactor – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is considering an application for the renewal of Facility Operating License No. R-95, which currently authorizes the Rhode Island Atomic Energy Commission (RIAEC or the licensee) to operate the Rhode Island Nuclear Science Center (RINSC) reactor at a maximum steady-state thermal power of 2 megawatts (MW). The RINSC reactor is a plate type fueled research reactor located at the University of Rhode Island Narragansett Bay Campus, in Narragansett, Rhode Island. If approved, the renewed license would authorize the licensee to operate the RINSC reactor up to a steady-state thermal power of 2 MW for an additional 20 years from the date of issuance of the renewed license. Because the license renewal application contains sensitive unclassified non-safeguards information (SUNSI), an order imposes procedures to obtain access to SUNSI for contention preparation.

October 24, 2016 – 81 FR 73144-73147 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – In the Matter of Tetra Tech EC, Inc. – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is issuing a Confirmatory Order (CO) to Tetra Tech EC, Inc. (TtEC) to memorialize the agreements reached during an alternative dispute resolution mediation session held on September 7, 2016. This Order will resolve the issue that was identified during an NRC Investigation of TtEC employees at Hunters Point Naval Shipyard site in San Francisco, California. The Confirmatory Order is effective upon issuance.

October 24, 2016 – 81 FR 73154-73155 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Performance Review Boards for Senior Executive Service – The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has announced appointments to the NRC Performance Review Board (PRB) responsible for making recommendations on performance appraisal ratings and performance awards for NRC Senior Executives and Senior Level System employees and appointments to the NRC PRB Panel responsible for making recommendations to the appointing and awarding authorities for NRC PRB members.

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October 24, 2016 – Press Pieces

On October 24th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

October 24, 2016 – Syracuse.com – Legislator: Saving nukes will spare NY consumers from power price spike (Your letters) – In August, the New York state Public Service Commission adopted the Clean Energy Standard which included, among other things, subsidies for the Upstate nuclear plants. Since that time, the anti-nuclear crowd has ramped up their criticism of the PSC’s forward-thinking solution and now there is an effort to get the Clean Energy Standard overturned. The criticism is baffling, particularly from so-called environmentalists considering that nuclear power is clean and generates zero carbon emissions 24/7. If the PSC had not included nuclear power in the Clean Energy Standard, it is likely that all four nuclear power plants in Upstate New York would have had to close down — never to reopen. This would be economically catastrophic for Upstate New York resulting in the loss of thousands of jobs. Closure of our nuclear plants would also mean New Yorkers would have to import more of our power from out-of-state — likely coming from generators who use gas and coal, something the environmentalist crowd is demanding we become less reliant on.

October 24, 2016 – pc-tablet.co.in – International conference accepts a nonsense paper written using iOS autocompete – Christoph Bartneck is a Professor at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand and he pulled out a prank which to many must look like utter nonsense but for many somewhat intriguing. The learned Professor was invited to a conference on atomic and nuclear physics. He and the topic were alike as cheese and chalk. You may ask why? Well, he is an authority in Human Interface Technology and did not know anything about Atomic Physics, Nuclear energy, fission, fusion or Radioactivity. Without a clue he just wrote two words- Atomic and nuclear and bingo! A suggestion popped up, courtesy to iOS auto complete feature. The learned professor wrote out his paper with the words churned out by the app and wonder in thunder, his work has been accepted by the International Conference on Atomic and Nuclear Physics.

October 24, 2016 – KNPR.org – Waste, Families Left Behind As Nuclear Plants Close – A drive 30 minutes north of Omaha, Neb., leads to the Fort Calhoun nuclear power plant. It’s full of new equipment. There’s a white concrete box building that’s still under construction. It’s licensed until 2033. But the plant is closing Monday. Nuclear power is expensive, especially when compared to some of the alternatives, so the U.S. nuclear power industry is shrinking. As more plants go offline, industry leaders are forced to reckon with what critics call a “broken system” for taking plants out of service and storing radioactive waste.

October 24, 2016 – PhysOrg – Modernizing the format of nuclear data – When atomic nuclei collide with other nuclei or subatomic particles, a large number of reactions can occur, resulting in many possible products. High-quality data describing these nuclear reactions are essential for many important scientific, engineering, and commercial applications. These applications include nuclear reactor design and safety, radioactive waste disposal, stockpile stewardship of nuclear weapons, medical radioisotope therapy and diagnostics, fusion energy experiments, astrophysics, nuclear forensics, and more. At Lawrence Livermore, accurate and complete nuclear data are critical for both theoretical and experimental research. Despite the importance of nuclear data to so many fields, the format for storing, evaluating, and using these data goes back to the 1960s, when computing was based on 80-column punch cards—small, stiff sheets of paper that contain information represented by the presence or absence of holes in predefined positions. As a result, existing formats, principally Livermore’s Evaluated Nuclear Data Library (ENDL) and the widely adopted Evaluated Nuclear Data Format (currently in version 6, or ENDF-6), are badly outdated. In response to the long-recognized need for modernization, the Nuclear Data and Theory group at Lawrence Livermore has developed a far more capable and flexible format called Generalized Nuclear Data (GND), which takes advantage of many recent advances in computer technology. GND is readable by both computers and humans, flexible, and extensible for supporting new types of nuclear data.

October 24, 2016 – Prague Daily Monitor – Drábová says nuclear waste storage site should be close to plant – A permanent radioactive waste repository would be best located right at the nuclear power plant, whether in Dukovany, south Moravia, or Temelin, south Bohemia, Dana Drabova, chairwoman of the State Office for Nuclear Safety (SUJB), said on Czech Television (CT) yesterday. The Czech Republic should build the facility by 2065. The costs are estimated at 112 billion crowns. There are currently 24 billion crowns on its account. Every entity which produces the waste sends 50 crowns to the account per megawatt-hour of generated power. At present, nuclear waste is deposited in temporary stores within the two power plants’ compounds.

October 24, 2016 – WVXU – 10 Years Since The Clean-Up Of The Fernald Site Was Completed – From 1951 until 1989, the Feed Materials Production Center in Fernald, Ohio, about 20 miles northwest of Cincinnati, was a key player in the Cold War, processing uranium for the United States nuclear weapons program. But in the 1980s you couldn’’t watch or read the news without seeing a story about the environmental issues plaguing the site and causing concern and anger among its neighbors. When production at Fernald ended, cleanup and environmental remediation began. That work was completed in 2006, and today the site is home to the Fernald Preserve, more than 1,000 acres of wetlands and wildlife habitat.

October 24, 2016 – Medical XPress – Radiation method could enhance cancer-killing effect of treatment, reduce side effects – A Purdue-related startup is developing a unique nanoparticle ultraviolet radiation technology that could enhance cancer cell killing effects of radiation treatment, thus reducing radiation doses and patient side effects. You-Yeon Won, a professor in Purdue’s School of Chemical Engineering, and Rachel Kim, an MBA graduate from MIT Sloan, co-founded the company Lodos Theranostics to further develop the patented technology named Radio Luminescence Therapy. “Annually in the United States about one million cancer patients receive radiation treatment and about half of those patients qualify for radio sensitization treatments where they receive additional agents to enhance the radiation effect.

October 24, 2016 – PhysOrg – New materials with photonic crystals that filter radiation designed – Research by the NUP/UPNA-Public University of Navarre has proposed various designs for photonic crystal materials that can be used to filter radiation. Specifically, the focus has been to develop a coating comprising dielectric spheres that, applied to a window, would prevent outside heat from entering in the summer and the indoor heat from escaping in winter. The samples designed and the results obtained suggest a means for developing the right technique to obtain materials of this type in the future, although the outcome of the tests, which were carried out using low-cost, traditional techniques, were not what had been expected. This is according to a Ph.D. thesis by Paola Morales titled “Efectos de filtrado por recubrimiento de cristal fotónico” (Effects of filtering using photonic crystal coating) read at the NUP/UPNA.

October 24, 2016 – Wall Street Journal – Russians Conduct Nuclear-Bomb Survival Drills as Cold War Heats Up – Russian authorities have stepped up nuclear-war survival measures amid a showdown with Washington, dusting off Soviet-era civil-defense plans and upgrading bomb shelters in the biggest cities. At the Kremlin’s Ministry of Emergency Situations, the Cold War is back. The country recently held its biggest civil defense drills since the collapse of the U.S.S.R., with what officials said were 40 million people rehearsing a response to chemical and nuclear threats. Videos of emergency workers deployed in hazmat suits or checking the ventilation in bomb shelters were prominently aired on television when the four days of drills were held across the country. Students tried on gas masks and placed dummies on stretchers in school auditoriums.

October 24, 2016 – Reuters – Bulgarian prosecutors seek to waive immunity of former energy minister over nuclear project – Bulgaria’s chief prosecutor asked parliament on Monday to strip former energy minister Delyan Dobrev of his immunity for losing over 4.5 million euros ($4.9 million) in state funds over a cancelled nuclear project. Prosecutors accuse Dobrev, who was energy minister in the first government of Prime Minister Boiko Borisov, of failing to take steps to stop payments to a consultant company engaged with the Belene nuclear project after it was cancelled in 2012. “The request is based on evidence collected by Sofia City Prosecution for a crime committed by Delyan Dobrev when he was an economy and energy minister, which caused damages worth 4.56 million euros to the state energy firm NEK,” the chief prosecutor said in a statement.

October 24, 2016 – WBFO 88.7 – Canadian nuclear regulatory inspections called inadequate – Canada’s federal government watchdog is calling for the country’s nuclear regulator to beef up inspections of the country’s nuclear power plants. In a recent report, the commissioner of the environment found several serious issues. Canada has five nuclear power plants, three of them in Ontario. Of those three, two of them are on the north shore of Lake Ontario, just east of Toronto. Together, they supply enough energy for almost 3.5 million people. But the commissioner of the environment has found the agency that regulates the nuclear industry was not adequately inspecting those nuclear power plants. Julie Gelfand says her audit focused only on how the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission manages its site inspections.

October 24, 2016 – Reuters – Suit seeks to overturn New York nuclear power plant subsidies – A group of electrical power companies have filed a federal lawsuit challenging a state commission’s plan to provide subsidies to four nuclear power plants as a means of reducing air pollution. In the complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Manhattan on Wednesday, the plaintiffs claimed the New York Public Service Commission’s plan will depress wholesale electricity prices in the short term but ultimately force non-subsidized generators from the market and raise energy prices for consumers.

October 24, 2016 – Powermag.com – Generators Sue to Block Lifeline for New York Nuclear Plants – A group of generators including Dynegy and NRG Energy filed suit in federal court on October 19 seeking to block an incentive program that would help three New York nuclear power plants remain economic over the next decade. An August decision by the New York Public Service Commission (PSC) approving New York’s Clean Energy Standard included a provision requiring the state’s investor-owned utilities and other energy suppliers to pay for the intrinsic value of carbon-free emissions from nuclear power plants by purchasing “Zero-Emission Credits” (ZEC). Those credits are added to the wholesale price each plant receives for its power, and the costs are passed on to ratepayers.

October 24, 2016 – Atlanta Business Chronicle – Georgia Power, PSC staff reach agreement on Vogtle costs – Georgia Power Co. customers would get a rate reduction of $325 million toward construction of the nuclear expansion at Plant Vogtle during the next four years under a settlement agreement signed Thursday. Under the terms of the deal, reached by negotiators representing the Atlanta-based utility and Georgia Public Service Commission staff, all of Georgia Power’s spending on the project through the end of last year would be deemed “prudent,” as would costs associated with this year’s legal settlement between the utility and Vogtle prime contractor Westinghouse Electric Co.

October 24, 2016 – Palm Beach Post – FPL starts work to reduce too-salty plume at Turkey Point – Florida Power & Light Co. has embarked on a 10-year, $206 million clean up of extremely salty water from its Turkey Point plant’s cooling canal system, which poses a threat to drinking water for roughly 3 million people as far north as Boca Raton. Florida Power & Light Co. has embarked on a 10-year clean up of extremely salty water from its Turkey Point plant’s cooling canal system, which poses a potential threat to drinking water for roughly 3 million people as far north as Boca Raton. The fix is expected to cost FPL customers $206 million over the decade, FPL spokesman Peter Robbins said Thursday. This year’s portion of the cost is $50 million. Customers will pay for the remediation through environmental fees in their bills. This year the 1,000 kilowatt-hour customer is paying $2.63 a month, and next year will decrease to $2.42.

October 24, 2016 – WTVY – Dale Co. private property could host nuclear waste storage research – A major nonprofit research firm says it wants to drill a 3 mile deep hole in Dale County for research on how to store nuclear waste. Battelle based headquartered in Columbus, Ohio plans to submit a proposal to the U.S. Department of Energy Monday to drill a bore-hole three miles deep beneath private property in Dale County and other locations around the country. “Everybody wants to know geologic questions, based on places that are unexplored, and this is exploring three miles beneath your feet. That combination of drilling has never been done, so, the combination, of that deep, that vertical, that cylindrical, is what we’re after, and what we are going to prove that that engineering feat can be done,” said Battelle Company Spokesperson, and Senior Media Specialist for Battelle, T.R. Massey.

October 24, 2016 – Christian Science Monitor – After 20 years of nuclear dormancy, a new reactor emerges in the US – In many American cities, nuclear power plants are rapidly shutting down. But in others, they’re just now popping up. After more than four decades of intermittent construction, a new reactor has begun commercial operation in Tennessee. Watts Bar Unit 2, built and operated by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), is the country’s 100th nuclear generator and the first new one in 20 years. The 1,150-megawatt generator, which was originally connected to the power grid in June, is now producing electricity for to 650,000 homes and businesses in Tennessee’s southeast corner. The opening of a new nuclear power plant amid closures of existing plants is a reflection of the mixed views of nuclear energy in the United States. While opponents caution that nuclear power comes with risks of meltdown that cannot be ignored, to advocates – including some environmentalists – nuclear power represents a clean and inexpensive source of energy and a vital transitional fuel that can help the US move away from fossil fuels and achieve energy independence.

October 24, 2016 – Dothan Eagle – Rehobeth students go to the source for lesson in nuclear power – Zakary Brooks and Alexis Enfinger tore through Farley Nuclear Plant’s visitor’s center Thursday, marking down facts gathered from educational exhibits. The fact-gathering mission was part of a scavenger hunt intended to help students learn more about nuclear energy. Brooks and Enfinger were among 80 Rehobeth Middle School students who visited Farley Nuclear Plant on Thursday for Nuclear Science Week activities. Neecie Tarrant, a plant spokesperson, said the scavenger hunt is an interactive teaching tool that helps students better remember the information they learned during the visit.

October 24, 2016 – KNAU Arizona Public Radio – ADEQ Renews Air-Pollution Permits for Three Uranium Mines Near Grand Canyon – State officials have cleared three uranium mines near the Grand Canyon to continue operations. The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality recently approved new air-pollution permits for the mines close to the canyon’s North and South rims. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports. The new permits include enhanced dust-control measures and increased soil sampling requirements. Mine operators will also have to reduce uranium stockpiles and cover any open storage areas. “We are confident that these measure, while enhanced, will be more than adequate to protect human health and the environment. We recognize the real sensitivity of the area. We not only want to make sure we’re protecting any public in the area, but certainly protecting one of the wonders of the world,” says Timothy Franquist, ADEQ’s air quality director.

October 24, 2016 – Seattle Times – Nuclear energy is the best option for a clean-energy future – In the letter “Nuclear power: Not worth the risk” [Northwest Voices, Oct. 17], the writer supported the Seattle City Council’s vote calling for City Light to replace the electricity purchased from the Columbia Generating Station. Nuclear-generating plants provide by far the greatest carbon-free electrical power in the country (approximately 60 percent), as well as reliable baseload power. Wind and solar must be paired with co-generation, which in most cases is by gas-fired plants producing carbon dioxide. Climate change may be the biggest problem facing society. Mitigation seems to require rapid replacement of fossil fuels from our energy mix. Like many environmentalists I have come to the realization that nuclear is the only currently available technology that can replace fossil fuels in any meaningful way, providing a bridge to the goals set in the Paris agreement.

October 24, 2016 – KSBY – Public hearing on impending Diablo Canyon closure – Dozens of community members attend a public hearing Thursday afternoon. For the first time, the public was able to voice concerns Thursday directly to the California Public Utilities Commission over the impending closure of the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant. Eleven elected officials and 32 public members took to a microphone to help the CPUC reach an informed decision. Since PG&E announced its joint proposal back in June, it has held five public meetings to get feedback from the community. The application was filed in August. That started the state’s review process, part of which happened Thursday.

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October 19, 2016 – 81 FR 72042-72043 – DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY – National Nuclear Security Administration; Agency Information Collection Extension – The Department of Energy (DOE), pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, intends to extend for three years, an information collection request with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the extended collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency’s estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

October 19, 2016 – 81 FR 72035 – APPALACHIAN STATES LOW-LEVEL RADIOACTIVE WASTE COMMISSION – Annual Meeting – TIME AND DATE: 10:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m. October 28, 2016. PLACE: Harrisburg Hilton and Towers, One North Second Street, Harrisburg, PA 17101. STATUS: The meeting will be open to the public. MATTERS TO BE CONSIDERED: Portions Open to the Public: The primary purpose of this meeting is to (1) Review the independent auditors’ report of the Commission’s financial statements for fiscal year 2015-2016; (2) Review the Low-Level Radioactive Waste (LLRW) generation information for 2015; (3) Consider a proposed budget for fiscal year 2017-2018; (4) Review recent regional and national developments regarding LLRW management and disposal; and (5) Elect the Commission’s Officers. Portions Closed to the Public: Executive Session, if deemed necessary, will be announced at the meeting.

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October 29, 2016 – On this date, the updates that that take place regularly on the Plexus-NSD web site (e.g., Press Pieces, Regulatory Action, Upcoming Events, etc.) will cease for a short period of time. Changes to the web site, its content and navigation are forthcoming, so be sure to watch this space! In the meantime, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to Contact Plexus-NSD.

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October 19, 2016 – Press Pieces

On October 19th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

October 19, 2016 – Daily Signal – What the Candidates Need to Know About Yucca Mountain – The final presidential debates take place Wednesday in Las Vegas. Given the location, a controversial issue sure to come up is that of a nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain. The repository is designed to hold spent nuclear materials from national security activities and commercial nuclear power reactors. Billions of dollars have already been spent on exploratory tunnels and other construction at the site, but it has yet to be built. Yucca Mountain has turned into a political football and a litmus test for many politicians, some of whom have built whole careers around this issue alone. In Congress and especially in Nevada, parties have dug their trenches deep—“Yucca or bust” on one side, and “over my dead body” on the other.

October 19, 2016 – Omaha World Herald – Job cuts at Fort Calhoun nuclear plant will come in six steps under tentative plan – A series of six layoffs over the next 20 months will reduce the workforce at the Omaha Public Power District’s Fort Calhoun nuclear plant to as few as 300 employees. That’s less than half of the plant’s full staffing level of about 700 employees and a significant reduction to the 570 employees currently on site. According to a preliminary decommissioning timeline OPPD officials presented to federal regulators at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission on Tuesday, the next round of job cuts at Fort Calhoun will happen in the first quarter of 2017.

October 19, 2016 – AllMediaNY – Germany Scientists Attempt to Measure Neutrino Mass – An experiment in Germany will attempt to measure the mass of a neutrino for the first time. Scientists with the Karlsruhe Tritium Neutrino experiment, or KATRIN, will study the petite particles by observing the radioactive decay of tritium, an isotope of hydrogen with two neutrons.When tritium decays into helium, a neutrino and an electron is emitted in the process. Since the minuscule particles have a million-times less mass than an electron, a measurement has been illusive for scientists.However, the experiment at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology will precisely measure the energy emitted by electrons to deduce neutrino mass.

October 20, 2016 – Quartz – The world’s biggest nuclear fusion experiment may lead to endless clean energy – Thirty-five countries are working together to build the world’s first large-scale nuclear fusion reactor—and if successful, their efforts could help humans harness the “ultimate green energy.” The reactor, currently estimated to cost $20 billion, is now under construction in southern France. Nuclear fusion—when atoms’ cores collide into each other, releasing tremendous amounts of energy—is much more powerful than reactions used in current nuclear plants and produces no radioactive waste or greenhouse gasses. That’s primarily because it’s fueled by a type of hydrogen readily extractable from water, making it a limitless energy source. Sustained nuclear fusion has never been realized on a large scale before, and the project’s estimated budget has quadrupled over the decade-long planning period. While some skeptics say the project is too expensive and not scalable, the reactor’s engineers expect it to become fully operational in 20 years.

October 19, 2016 – Bloomberg News – EON, Peers Start Counting Cost of $26 Billion Nuclear Exit – EON SE and Vattenfall AB were the first two companies to provide details on the extent of utilities’ nuclear liabilities after the German government on Wednesday approved a draft law on waste storage costs. EON estimates it will pay about 10 billion euros ($11 billion) in total based on its preliminary assessment of the law, a figure in line with previous expectations, according to Carsten Thomsen-Bendixen, a spokesman for the Essen-based company. Swedish state-owned Vattenfall said it must pay 1.75 billion euros. RWE AG declined to provide a breakdown. The draft law brings closer an end to talks on who funds the country’s exit from atomic power, particularly the cost of storing the radioactive fuel, which has weighed on the companies’ shares. German reactor owners have to pay 23.6 billion euros into a fund to free them from their atomic waste storage liabilities under the legislation that includes an option to make installments until 2026.

October 19, 2016 – Westport News – Some workers at Hanford exposed to radioactive waste – Some workers at a Hanford Nuclear Reservation tank farm have had their skin contaminated with low levels of radioactive waste. The incident occurred Tuesday morning. The Tri-City Herald reports the workers were in a pit at the AX Tank Farm when contamination was detected in the pit. They backed out of the area, but a survey found low levels of radioactive contamination on their skin. Equipment is being installed in the AX Tank Farm to allow waste to be emptied from leak-prone, underground nuclear waste storage tanks.

October 19, 2016 – PhysOrg – X-ray point source discovered at the center of a distant dwarf galaxy Henize 2-10 – NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory has helped astronomers to uncover a previously unidentified X-ray point source at the massive black hole in the center of a distant compact starburst galaxy known as Henize 2-10. The findings are available in a paper published Oct. 5 on the arXiv pre-print server. Located some 34 million light years away in the constellation of Pyxis, Henize 2-10 is the first dwarf galaxy found to have a supermassive black hole at its center. With a mass of less than 10 billion solar masses, it is a compact starburst galaxy hosting numerous young “super star clusters” and a candidate low-luminosity active galactic nucleus (AGN). The presence of an AGN in Henize 2-10 offers an excellent opportunity to study massive black hole accretion and star formation. This is due to the fact that active nuclei in dwarf galaxies undergoing a burst of star formation reveal essential astronomical processes. They could offer crucial insights on the interplay between a massive black hole and the stars of the galaxy in which it forms.

October 19, 2016 – Motley Fool – Why I Remain Bullish on Uranium and Cameco Corporation – Every time I look at Cameco Corporation (TSX:CCO)(NYSE:CCJ), I can’t help but feel like the bottom has been found and that the company will begin to turn around. And then another month or two goes by, I look at the company again, and it’s even lower. Despite all of this, I remain bullish on the company for a multitude of reasons. But, unfortunately, to be bullish on Cameco is to be bullish on uranium, which has experienced tremendous lows ever since the Fukushima disaster back in March 2011. For reference, the spot price of uranium that month was a little over US$60. Fast forward to September and the spot price is only US$23. Naturally, if the price of the resource is down, Cameco has to be down as well.

October 19, 2016 – Mid-Hudson News – Smart meter opponents rally in Albany – A group of residents from Ulster County and other parts of the state rallied in Albany on Tuesday, urging the state legislature to grant homeowners the choice of having smart electric meters or analog meters in their homes. The Stop Meter organizations object to the deployment of digital utility meters. One of the rally organizers, Weston Blelock of Woodstock, claims the smart meters have adverse effects. “They spew toxic microwave radiation in people’s homes,” Blelock said. “They cause dust, dirty electricity, and they can, upon occasion, explode, cause fires, and be hacked, so there are privacy issues.”

October 19, 2016 – Proactiveinvestors.co.uk – Kromek “dirty bomb” detector milestone bodes well – Radiation technology company Kromek Group PLC (LON:KMK) has completed the delivery of an initial 10,000 personal D3S radiation detectors to a US Department of Defense agency. The D3S devices were delivered in support of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s (DARPA’s) SIGMA programme, which is aimed at preventing attacks using so-called radiological dirty bombs, and other nuclear threats across the globe. Having completed the initial delivery, as per the company’s announcement of the contract win back in February, Kromek said the next steps are for DARPA to demonstrate SIGMA’s full city and regional-scale, continuous wide-area monitoring capability in 2017, and to make the transition of the operational system to local, state and federal entities in 2018. “We are proud to be part of the successful SIGMA programme, which has sought to increase radiation detection capabilities while lowering the costs, in order to network an unprecedented number of advanced detectors and provide a comprehensive, dynamic and automated overview of the radiological environment,” said Dr Arnab Basu, chief executive officer of Kromek.

October 19, 2016 – World Nuclear News – Russia and Paraguay agree to cooperate in nuclear energy – The Radiological and Nuclear Regulatory Authority of Paraguay and Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom yesterday signed a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in peaceful uses of nuclear energy. The document was signed by Eladio Loizaga, Paraguay’s minister of foreign affairs, and Nikolay Spassky, Rosatom’s deputy director-general. The signing ceremony was attended by Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov. In a statement, Rosatom said the memorandum – which is the first document related to the peaceful uses of nuclear energy to be signed between the two countries – constitutes the basis for bilateral cooperation in a number of areas including: the application of radioisotopes and radiation technology in industry, medicine and agriculture; assistance in creation and development of a nuclear power infrastructure in Paraguay; nuclear and radiation safety and security; and, development of programs aimed at raising public awareness about nuclear technologies and their applications, including organization of information centres.

October 19, 2016 – Medical Physics Web – Paediatric PET dose can be reduced – A simulation study evaluating the quality of whole-body PET/MR images of paediatric cancer patients shows that the amount of PET tracer administered can be significantly reduced while still obtaining diagnostic quality images. Researchers from the University of Tübingen, who have been investigating the feasibility of using PET/MRI in lieu of PET/CT, developed and validated a methodology to accurately create low-activity PET images from previously acquired PET scan data. The approach could allow radiologists to define optimal tracer doses for PET/MRI procedures on a patient-by-patient basis (Eur. J. Nucl. Med. Mol. Imaging doi: 10.1007/s00259-016-3503-5).

October 19, 2016 – Sunderland Echo – Navy monitors Russian nuclear-powered vessels heading for North Sea – The Royal Navy is preparing for Russia’s flagship aircraft carrier and a fleet Norwegian surveillance teams picked up the nuclear-powered Admiral Kuznetzov and six other naval ships off coast on Monday en-route Syria. The Admiral Kuznetzov is carrying fighter jets, reconnaissance and combat helicopters and cruise missiles which will be used to bolster Russia’s bombing campaign in support of President Bashar al-Assad. It was reported earlier this month how RAF pilots had been ordered to soot down hostile Russian aircraft in the stricken Middle Eastern nation.The fleet was shadowed by a Norwegian naval frigate as it passed through international waters.

October 19, 2016 – Tasnim News Agency – Iran to Begin Building First Nuclear Hospital Soon: AEOI Chief – Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Ali Akbar Salehi said construction of the country’s first nuclear hospital will start in the near future. The construction project of the nuclear hospital has been financed and the AEOI has finalized a cooperation agreement with an Austrian company in this regard, Salehi said on Tuesday. He added that according to agreements with the Ministry of Health and Tehran’s Municipality, the construction of the hospital will begin within the next few months in the capital. According to the Iranian nuclear chief, only five countries in the world have such hospitals.

October 19, 2016 – Power Engineering International – Germany approves nuclear waste storage deal with utilities – Germany has reportedly approved a deal with its major utilities on how to cover the costs of handling and storing nuclear waste. The cabinet on Wednesday passed an agreement whereby the nation’s four largest utilities – E.ON, RWE, EnBW and Vattenfall – will begin paying into a €23.6bn ($26bn) fund, and in return the government will assume responsibility for the practicalities of storing nuclear waste. The utilities will continue to be responsible for the costs of shutting down their nuclear power plants by 2022. The deal, reached after intense talks, is aimed at addressing uncertainty over potential costs for the taxpayer, as well as offering financial clarity for the utilities and their investors.

October 19, 2016 – Spaceflight Insider – NASA’s JPL looks to boost power from nuclear batteries – Radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) have been the power source for many of the most ambitious exploration missions in NASA’s history, powering spacecraft in areas too remote, or too impractical, for solar panels to provide sufficient electricity. A new development to this power-generating workhorse may soon substantially improve the capabilities of the RTG, possibly benefiting both interplanetary missions and daily life here on Earth. In an Oct. 13, 2016, release, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) outlined the potential to increase the efficiency of the Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG), and make it hardier in the process. “NASA needs reliable long-term power systems to advance exploration of the solar system,” said Jean-Pierre Fleurial, supervisor for the thermal energy conversion research and advancement group at JPL. To that end, JPL engineers look to make use of a class of materials known as skutterudites. These minerals have the electrical conductivity of a metal while maintaining the thermal insulation characteristics of glass.

October 19, 2016 – Stokes Sentinel – What would happen if a nuclear bomb hit Stoke-on-Trent? – Around 300,000 people would be killed and thousands more left with horrific injuries if a nuclear blast hit Stoke-on-Trent. Renewed concerns over nuclear war resurfaced for many yesterday (Tuesday) as top North Korean official, Lee Yong Pil, insisted the communist state would launch a nuclear weapon first if they felt another nation was going to strike. The last nuclear weapon reportedly tested by the communist state was a ten kiloton blast in 2013. If such a powerful blast detonated at the ‘optimum’ 200m over Hanley the impact would be catastrophic.

October 19, 2016 – Construction News – Seddon starts work on Northern hub of National Nuclear College – Seddon has started work on the National College for Nuclear in Workington, where 7,000 people are due to receive training by 2020. The college is being built at Lakes College, Workington, and is one of two sites being developed by the National College in partnership with the government and nuclear employers, led by EDF Energy and Sellafield. As part of the Cumbrian hub, Seddon will build facilities including two laboratories, a preparation room, a digital consulting area, two virtual reality suites, and a project workspace area, with the building designed to a BREAAM Very Good standard. The southern hub of the college will be based at Bridgewater College in Somerset. The scheme forms part of the government’s £80m committment by the government towards seven new National Colleges for Industry, announced in May this year.

October 19, 2016 – World Nuclear News – Five French units to undergo steam generator checks – The French nuclear safety authority has requested five of EDF’s nuclear power units are taken offline for additional inspections on their steam generators within the next three months. The steel in parts of those components has been found to contain high concentrations of carbon. The upper and bottom heads of the reactor pressure vessel for the EPR under construction at Flamanville 3 were manufactured at Areva’s Le Creusot facility in September 2006 and January 2007, respectively. A high carbon content in those parts prompted Areva to review the company’s quality management process in 2015 for some 400 heavy steel components made at the Creusot Forge plant since 1965.

October 19, 2016 – Reuters – Bulgarian former energy minister charged over nuclear project – Bulgarian prosecutors charged former economy and energy minister Petar Dimitrov on Wednesday with losing 77 million euros ($86 million) of state money in an equipment sale to Russia’s Atomstroyexport related to a cancelled nuclear project. Bulgaria cancelled the 10-billion-euro Belene project on the Danube River in 2012, after failing to find foreign investors and under pressure from Brussels and Washington to limit its energy dependence on Russia. Dimitrov, 67, was economy and energy minister from 2007 to 2009. Prosecutors said he failed to stop NEK signing a deal with Russia’s Atomstroyexport that cost the state 77 million euros ($86 million) in losses.

October 19, 2016 – Daily Star – North Korea will be ‘mega nuclear power by 2020 with 80 NUKES’ – There are fears a nuclear apocalypse could be inflicted upon the world if North Korea can accumulate 80 nukes by 2020, a number predicted by an expert. Lee Sang-hyun, vice president at the research planning division of the South Korean Sejong Institute, told a forum yesterday Pyongyang is capable of building around eight nuclear weapons every year. He told a forum hosted by the Presidential Committee for Unification Preparation that the secretive nation has a huge supply of plutonium and uranium, the ingredients needed to make nuclear bombs.

October 19, 2016 – Westport News – Seabrook nuclear power plant to address concrete erosion – The Nuclear Regulatory Commission says it will move forward with its review of Seabrook Station nuclear power plant’s license renewal process after accepting the owner’s initial proposal for addressing concrete erosion in the New Hampshire plant. The Portsmouth Herald reports (http://bit.ly/2ekJtUK) the commission required that NextEra Energy submit preliminary plans for addressing alkali-silica reaction in Seabrook Station’s structures before commencing with the review of the license renewal process. The commission’s review is now expected to be completed by August 2018. If approved, Seabrook Station’s license would be extended to 2050. It is currently set to expire in 2030.

October 19, 2016 – WNIJ – Forum Held Regarding Two Endangered Western Illinois Nuclear Power Plants – Unions co-sponsored a forum on nuclear energy in Illinois. It’s part of an effort to save two nuclear plants that Exelon is attempting to close. The company says the plants in Clinton and the Quad Cities are losing money, and it’s asking the state to increase electricity rates as a subsidy. So far, lawmakers haven’t taken up that request. Democratic Congresswoman Cheri Bustos represents a portion of the Quad Cities. She says the nuclear plant has benefited the state since it opened roughly 40 years go. “It produces energy that help light Chicago, and many parts of the state of Illinois. It helps keep businesses running — you know exactly what nuclear power does. But it also helps reduce the carbon emissions.”

October 19, 2016 – Reuters – French spot power hits four-year high on nuclear worry – The French day-ahead power contract price on Wednesday jumped to its highest in four years on concerns that nuclear power supply from utility EDF will lag rising demand as the weather gets colder in coming weeks. Persistent doubts over EDF’s ability to meet French and wider European electricity demand for winter has roiled markets, pushing spot and forward power prices to new highs. French base load price for Thursday delivery was at 93 euros ($102.26) a megawatt hour (MWh) at 1010 GMT, up 21 euros from Tuesday’s close after briefly touching 100 euros/MWh in early trade, the highest since February 2012. “There are concerns as to how France will cope if it turns really cold. Nuclear availability will be relatively low, hydro power supplies are already low and output in surrounding countries is tight,” a London-based trader said, adding that capacity at coal and fuel power stations was also low.

October 19, 2016 – Top Yaps – Russia Agrees To Lease Second Akula-Class Nuclear Attack Submarine To India – Russia has decided to lease out a second nuclear attack submarine (SSN) of Project 971 Shchuka-B (NATO: Akula-class) to India this month in a deal worth around $2 billion. Russian President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Narendra Modi had signed the deal—along with a host of other weapons purchase agreements—on the sidelines of the BRICS summit recently. However, it was not part of the announcements that were made after the talks. The Akula 2 class submarine is expected to arrive in Indian waters in 2020-21. At the moment Indian Navy operates INS Chakra (formerly known as K-152 Nerpa), leased to India by Russia for 10 years. It was commissioned on April 4, 2012 after India paid for its completion of its construction and sea-trials.

October 19, 2016 – WFLA 8 – Testing shows radioactive material in wells; unclear if Mosaic sinkhole has anything to do with it – Some residents who live near the massive sinkhole at Mosaic’s New Wales Plant are worried about their well water. Recent test results show they should be concerned because of high levels of radioactive material. What is not clear is whether the Mosaic sinkhole, which dropped 215 million gallons of radioactive water into the Florida aquifer, has anything to do with it. Mosaic – and some experts – say it’s possible the radioactivity was already present in some of these wells. They said it could have been caused by by “natural geologic processes.” Testing so far, state officials say, show the contaminated water has been captured exactly the way it should be. But resident Jennifer Psait isn’t sure she’s buying that. She points to a delay in Mosaic notifying residents about the problems. One of two wells on Bob Glaze’s property has so much radium in the brown water that he shut it off — out of fear. Psait is Glaze’s nextdoor tenant. She shares his two wells. Psait is worried about her three children who, until recently, drank and bathed in the water “I’m not a chemist, or a chemistry student,” she said. “I think that’s pretty bad.”

October 19, 2016 – Electric Light & Power – Incoming NEI chief looks to spread nuclear-friendly policy in states – The incoming Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) president and CEO Maria Korsnick spent 60 minutes talking with reporters Oct. 14 about issues ranging from the State of New York’s nuclear-friendly energy policy to the cost-cutting in her industry. On Oct. 4, NEI announced that Korsnick, currently the COO at the trade organization, would become its new chief executive on Jan. 1, 2017 with the retirement of Marvin Fertel who has spent nine years at the NEI helm. Don Brandt, NEI’s chairman of the board and the chairman, president and CEO of Pinnacle West Capital introduced Korsnick to reporters in Washington, D.C. Brandt said Korsnick was prepared to lead “particularly as the industry is under duress.” “She challenges people, she innovates … and she gets results,” Brandt said. “Her enthusiasm is contagious,” Brandt said. “Industry leaders have been widely impressed” with her work at NEI over the past 17 months.

October 19, 2016 – PRNewswire – First class of Vogtle 3 & 4 nuclear operators pass NRC licensing exam – Georgia Power announced today the latest milestone in the transition to operation of Plant Vogtle Units 3 and 4 – members of the first training class of nuclear operators have passed the initial licensing exam by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), ensuring that licensed, qualified operators are in place prior to nuclear fuel loading and plant start up. Once operational, the new units will employ approximately 75 highly trained nuclear operators as part of a permanent workforce of more than 800.

October 19, 2016 – Coastal Courier – Christmas may come early for Georgia Power – Christmas traditionally is celebrated on Dec. 25 for most Georgians. This year, one of our wealthiest corporate citizens may be celebrating that holiday a little earlier. That’s because the executives and shareholders of the Georgia Power Co. are in line to receive a Christmas gift worth more than a billion dollars when the members of the Public Service Commission convene their regular meeting on Wednesday.

October 19, 2016 – Tri-City Herald – CH2M Hill names new president for central Hanford contractor – The president of Hanford contractor CH2M Hill Plateau Remediation Co. announced on Monday that he will be leaving and his replacement has been named. John Ciucci is taking a job at the CH2M Hill corporate office in Colorado as part of a recent corporate reorganization, he told employees Monday morning. Ty Blackford is returning to Hanford from the Department of Energy’s Savannah River Site in South Carolina to take over as president and chief executive officer. The date in the change of leadership is yet to be determined.

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October 18, 2016 – 81 FR 71769-71770 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – LaCrosseSolutions, LLC; La Crosse Boiling Water Reactor Partial Site Release – On June 27, 2016, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) received from LaCrosseSolutions, LLC (LS) a request for approval to remove portions of the site from the operating license for the La Crosse Boiling Water Reactor. Specifically, LS intends to remove and release five radiologically non-impacted portions of the site from its license. The partial site release request was submitted concurrently with the La Crosse License Termination Plan and supports ongoing decommissioning activities at the site. The NRC is requesting public comments on LS’s partial site release request and the La Crosse License Termination Plan.

October 18, 2016 – 81 FR 71770 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Advisory Committee On Reactor Safeguards (ACRS) Meeting of the ACRS Subcommittee On Economic Simplified Boiling Water Reactors (ESBWR); Notice of Meeting – The ACRS Subcommittee on ESBWR will hold a meeting on October 20, 2016, Room T-2B1, 11545 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland. The meeting will be open to public attendance.

October 18, 2016 – 81 FR 71713 – DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY – Environmental Management Site-Specific Advisory Board, Portsmouth – This notice announces a meeting of the Environmental Management Site-Specific Advisory Board (EM SSAB), Portsmouth. The Federal Advisory Committee Act (Pub. L. 92-463, 86 Stat. 770) requires that public notice of this meeting be announced in the Federal Register. DATES: Thursday, November 3, 2016 6:00 p.m. ADDRESSES: Ohio State University, Endeavor Center, 1862 Shyville Road, Piketon, Ohio 45661. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Greg Simonton, Alternate Deputy Designated Federal Officer, Department of Energy Portsmouth/Paducah Project Office, Post Office Box 700, Piketon, Ohio 45661, (740) 897-3737, Greg.Simonton@lex.doe.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Purpose of the Board: The purpose of the Board is to make recommendations to DOE-EM and site management in the areas of environmental restoration, waste management and related activities.

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October 18, 2016 – Press Pieces

On October 18th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

October 18, 2016 – Los Alamos Daily Post – How The U.S. Failed In Excess Weapons Plutonium Disposition … A Nuclear Sputnik Moment? – Putin’s withdrawal from the U.S./Russia agreement for each nation to destroy 34 tons of excess weapons plutonium, (W-Pu) enough for 17,000 nuclear weapons, is more the consequence of U.S. technical failure than the deterioration of an international relationship. Both nations agreed that the plutonium be either destroyed by fission or converted to a plutonium isotopic form that was not useful for weapons. Russia chose to build a fast-spectrum nuclear reactor in hopes of launching a new breeder technology. The U. S. chose to combine the plutonium with uranium for burning in one or more of the 100 U. S. light water reactors. Russia proceeded about as fast as their budgets could allow and finally, after 16 years, their W-Pu burning reactor is up and running through initial tests, although with substitute fuel instead of W-Pu. But no U.S. progress can be reported. Before the agreement, the U.S. W-Pu disposition effort suffered through the “out-of-sight and out-of-mind” urgency of burying W-Pu in Yucca Mountain, thought to be a solution to any and all of our nation’s nuclear waste problems. After controversy over the prospect that W-Pu could by natural means evolve to spontaneous nuclear explosions, that approach was abandoned. Because anything that can be buried can be dug up, this was never a permanent solution anyway.

October 18, 2016 – Bay News 9 – Mosaic laser mapping reveals depth of radioactive sinkhole – Mosaic has released pictures and video of its use of high-tech gear to map the inside of the Polk County sinkhole that allowed millions of gallons of slightly radioactive water to flow into the aquifer. Mosaic said it attached laser-mapping gear called LiDAR to a 1,300-foot cable strung across the sinkhole, which is in a gypsum stack near Bartow, and then lowered the gear into the hole. The technology uses laser light to make a 3-D map of an object or area. The company thinks the process was the first time the technology has been used in that way.

October 18, 2016 – Daily Energy Insider – NRC evaluates security inspection program, seeks efficiency improvements – The Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI) praised the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) on Thursday for its approval of a limited assessment of the security baseline program, including “force-on-force” evaluations that will test nuclear plants’ protective systems against design-basis threats. “The nuclear energy industry has demonstrated that it has the most hardened facilities in the U.S. infrastructure,” NEI Senior Vice President and Chief Nuclear Officer Tony Pietrangelo said. “The performance of U.S. nuclear facilities during four cycles of security inspections remains exemplary. The commissioners’ direction to staff on its proposed review is a recognition of the maturity of the nuclear security programs.” Security baseline inspections of nuclear facilities evaluate plant operators’ effectiveness in protecting against design-basis threat, such as radiological sabotage, or the theft or loss of special nuclear materials. An additional memorandum from Oct. 5 calls on staff to concentrate inspection efforts on areas that are most likely to yield improvements and efficiencies.

October 18, 2016 – WBTV 3 – ‘Radium Girls’ coming to Catawba College – Catawba College’s freshmen class in Theatre Arts will be putting on a production of “Radium Girls” by playwright D.W. Gregory. The show, to be staged in Hedrick Little Theatre, opens on Tuesday, October 25 at 7:30 p.m. Additional 7:30 p.m. performances will be offered on Oct. 26th and 27th, with a 2:30 p.m. matinee offered on Sunday, Oct. 30th. Tickets are $12 for adults, $10 for students, and free for Catawba students and faculty members. “Radium Girls” is about a young woman named Grace Fryer, who works as a dial-painter to support her family during the aftermath of the Great Depression. Grace loves her job, but begins to notice her fellow employees falling ill. When she, too, becomes sick, Grace turns her attention to the company, believing it to be their fault. Everything comes to a head when the company is taken to court. There, Arthur Roeder, the president of the U.S. Radium Corporation, refuses to believe that his company is responsible for the mysterious illnesses of his former employees. Based on a true story, “Radium Girls” explores Grace’s perseverance through her trial and her illness.

October 18, 2016 – PhysOrg – Researchers road-test powerful method for studying singlet fission – Spin, an intrinsic property of electrons, is related to the dynamics of electrons excited as a result of singlet fission – a process which could be used to extract energy in future solar cell technologies. In a new study, researchers measure the spin properties of electronic states produced in singlet fission – a process which could have a central role in the future development of solar cells. Physicists have successfully employed a powerful technique for studying electrons generated through singlet fission, a process which it is believed will be key to more efficient solar energy production in years to come. Their approach, reported in the journal Nature Physics, employed lasers, microwave radiation and magnetic fields to analyse the spin of excitons, which are energetically excited particles formed in molecular systems.

October 18, 2016 – PhysOrg – How an army of engineers battles contamination and sleep deprivation to take Large Hadron Collider to new heights – The Large Hadron Collider at CERN is the world’s largest particle accelerator, and experiments like this have reached a scale where physicists are no longer able to build them alone. Instead, qualified engineers now lead the construction of these behemoths. And we are part of a team of engineers and physicists working on upgrading the LHC and eventually constructing a successor. On the surface CERN is a 1960s glass and concrete building. It’s often described as what people 50 years ago thought the future might look like. The cafeteria looks like any other, except you probably don’t get as many Nobel Prize winners in most canteens. But the real work goes on underneath the surface. The tunnel that houses the LHC is 27km in circumference, which is the same as the Circle Line in London’s underground system. But while the deepest London tube line is only 60 meters down, the LHC is 175 metres below ground. In the tunnel is also 50,000 tonnes of equipment weighing the same as six Eiffel Towers.

October 18, 2016 – army-technology.com – Kromek wins contracts from US DTRA and UK MoD – Kromek has been contracted by the US Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) to facilitate the development of an isotope radiation detector for use in military applications. Under the two-year contract, Kromek will improve DTRA’s technology platform to develop the ruggedised, high-performance detector. The company will further improve the D3S platform to offer disruptive, low-cost radiation isotope identification devices (RIID) and mini RIID devices for radiation and nuclear defence systems. “The contract wins add to the visibility of revenues underpinning our belief in the continuing growth of the business.” Kromek also received contracts to supply nuclear radiation detection products for the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) and a major civil nuclear partner.

October 18, 2016 – Union of Concerned Scientists – Nuclear (Information) Power – Among many lessons learned from the March 1979 core meltdown at Three Mile Island was the need to collect, assess, and disseminate relevant operating experience in a timely manner. In other words, nuclear information has the power to promote nuclear safety, but only when that information is shared so as to replicate good practices and eradicate bad ones. Both the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and the nuclear industry undertook parallel efforts after Three Mile Island to improve operating experience efforts. The centerpiece of the NRC’s operating experience efforts is its generic communications program. The NRC instituted this program before the Three Mile Island accident, but took steps following the accident to expand the program and to shorten the time between events and advisories. The NRC also lowered the threshold used to screen the information to share more operating experience with plant owners.

October 18, 2016 – Energy Live News – Nuclear power: Good or bad? Join the debate at #EL2016 – What should the future energy mix look like? Was it a good idea for the UK Government to give the go ahead for the Hinkley nuclear power plant in Somerset? Those questions and many more will be discussed at the Energy Live 2016 conference in London next month. Tom Greatrex, CEO of the Nuclear Industry Association (NIA), Dr Nina Skorupska, CEO of the Renewable Energy Association and former DECC nuclear strategist Hergen Haye will be debating on whether the UK needs new nuclear or not.

October 18, 2016 – Aljazeera – Controversial new nuclear plant ignites Belarus – Thirty years after an explosion at the Chernobyl nuclear power station devastated the countryside on the southern border of Belarus, leaving behind lasting consequences for millions of people, the construction of a new nuclear station is stirring discord between government officials, opposition politicians, the local populace and foreign diplomats. The death of a 43-year-old Russian contractor last month, after an explosion at the Belarusian nuclear power plant (BelNPP) construction site near Astravets in northern Belarus on its border with Lithuania, is only the latest in a string of little-publicised incidents that has raised concerns at home and abroad about the how the station is being constructed. On July 10 of this year, the 330-tonne reactor casing dropped from a height of between two and four metres in an incident that only came to the public’s attention two weeks later when a member of the Belarus United Civil Party, Mikalai Ulasevich, leaked the news to the local press.

October 18, 2016 – DailyExcelsior.com – Indigenous nuclear sub reportedly inducted to complete nuke triad – The Indian Navy is understood to have quietly commissioned into service the country’s first indigenous nuclear powered submarine INS Arihant which is capable of firing nuclear weapons, completing India’s nuclear triad. The Defence Ministry and the Navy did not confirm or deny reports that the submarine was inducted in August this year to complete the nuclear weapons triad that gives the country capability to launch nukes from land, air and sea. Navy and defence officials maintained today that the matter does not come under their purview. At a press conference today, Vice Admiral G S Pabby ducked six questions on Arihant but indicated that a formal announcement might be made in the coming days. “There will soon be an opportunity to talk about it,” Pabby said when faced with persistant questions.

October 18, 2016 – Port News – HHI taps Mary Cullen as Vice President, Nuclear Propulsion at Newport News Shipbuilding – Mary Cullen has been appointed vice president of nuclear propulsion at Newport News Shipbuilding, a division of Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII), the company said in its media release. Mary Gullen will assume her new role on Nov. 14 following a transition into the job with the help of Barry Fletcher, who will retire from the position after 37 years of shipbuilding service. In her new position, Cullen will be responsible for overhaul engineering, reactor services, test engineering, radiological controls, construction and process engineering, as well as refueling production and nuclear support.

October 18, 2016 – Global Construction Review – Pakistan switches on its latest made-in-China nuclear reactor – Pakistan has connected its latest nuclear reactor, largely built by China, to its national grid, marking the next step in China’s rise as a nuclear power exporter. The reactor in Chashma, in the central province of Punjab, is the third for the Chashma power station and was activated “on a trial basis” on Saturday, 15 October, reports VOA. According to the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission, the 340MW reactor will be subject to testing and will achieve full power in December 2016. State-owned China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) helped build the new reactor, called Chashma-3.

October 18, 2016 – Tehran Times – Nuclear chief says Iran exports 25 radiopharmaceuticals – Iran’s atomic energy chief said in comments on Tuesday the country produces and exports 25 radiopharmaceuticals to Asian and European countries. “Currently, 25 radiopharmaceuticals are produced inside the country and exported to countries of Iraq, Egypt, and Germany,” Ali Akbar Salehi told the press on the sidelines of the 10th national talent seminar. The country has large export capacity for radiopharmaceuticals much beyond its current level, according to Salehi, but “new facilities have to be established to produce the radiopharmaceuticals on the basis of GMP standards.” GMP, which stands for Good Manufacturing Practices, is a quality standard which ensures the consistent production and quality of medicinal products appropriate to their intended use and as required by the product specification, according to the World Health Organization.

October 18, 2016 – South China Morning Post – Seoul residents fear terrorism, radioactivity within decade – Six out of 10 Seoul citizens think their city is vulnerable to various disasters, and cite air pollution, summer heat and yellow dust as three disaster types threatening them most, a survey shows. The respondents also said they expected terrorism would emerge as the fourth type of disaster within a decade, according to the survey of 1,344 citizens and 85 experts by the Seoul Institute, a think tank that advises the metropolitan government on policy. Only 14.7 per cent of respondents said Seoul was safe from various disasters, one-fourth the level of those who saw their city as dangerous, and far lower than the 29.4 per cent positive replies of experts.

October 18, 2016 – The Courier – Historic radioactive waste could be a factor in Dundee airport expansion – Plans to extend the runway at Dundee Airport will have to take into account radioactive waste dumped at Riverside landfill more than 20 years ago. Low-level radioactive waste was last stored at the Riverside landfill site in 1996. The site, now known as Riverside Recycling Centre, neighbours the current runway at Dundee Airport. The waste, which came from “hospitals, universities and other small users”, poses no harm to the public – according to the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA). Any plans to expand runway would need to take in to consideration the radioactive waste which was stored, according to SEPA.

October 18, 2016 – Brattleboro Reformer – Officials have authored a guide for other communities facing nuclear decommissioning – Early in a new report on Vermont Yankee’s shutdown, Windham Region officials acknowledge that the closure’s full impacts “have yet to be realized and may not necessarily be easy to quantify.” Nevertheless, they believe they’ve got a story to tell. That’s the purpose of the report, framed as “lessons learned” both before and after the Vernon nuclear plant’s December 2014 closure. The document – the result of a tri-state effort – serves as an advisory, a tutorial and a warning for other communities that may face a loss of jobs, tax revenue and residents due to a nuclear plant shutdown. The document’s perceived importance was emphasized by its release on Friday at a downtown Brattleboro gathering attended by U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.; U.S. Rep. Peter Welch, D-Vt.; and Matt Erskine, a top official at the U.S. Economic Development Administration.

October 28, 2016 – Newburyport Daily News – Nuclear plant provides all data to NRC for license renewal review – NextEra Energy Seabrook nuclear power plant staff has provided supplemental information requested by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. That means that the federal agency can complete its review of the company’s license amendment related to a concrete degradation issue that’s plagued the plant in recent years. In mid-September the commission told NextEra it wanted more information before its staff could continue a review of the plant’s recently filed amendment to its 20-year license extension request. According to NRC’s letter to Seabrook Station Site Vice President Eric McCartney, the Sept. 30 submittal gives NRC staffers what they needed to complete their assessment.

October 18, 2016 – NY Daily News – EXCLUSIVE: Nuclear power company hit with federal tax penalty after deal to receive $7B subsidy from New York – An energy company set to receive a multibillion-dollar, state-approved subsidy that critics say could cost city utility ratepayers hundreds of millions of dollars reported profits of $2.2 billion in 2015 and recently was hit with a massive federal tax judgment. Exelon Generation in September was ordered by U.S. Tax Court to pay the IRS $1.45 billion in back taxes, penalties, and interest stemming from an issue involving power plant leases in Illinois. The order came a little more than a month after Gov. Cuomo announced a proposed sale of the FitzPatrick nuclear power plant in upstate Oswego County to Exelon by Entergy. The sale is part of a bailout for upstate’s three nuclear facilities, which Cuomo says is key to his clean energy plan designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

October 18, 2016 – Newser – Got $36M? This Nuke Plant Could be Yours – It’s not the Brooklyn Bridge, but authorities in Alabama do have a nuclear power plant they want to sell you. Minimum bids for the never-finished Bellefonte nuke plant start at $36.4 million, which is essentially the value of the 1,400-acre patch of land on the Tennessee River in Hollywood, Ala., with a couple of reactors thrown in, reports the Times Free Press. That’s a fraction of the approximately $5 billion that authorities have spent over nearly a half-century to develop the site, once the state’s largest energy project. Work began in 1973 on two nuclear reactors—four were planned—when demand for electric power was growing by 5% a year. But as demand ebbed, the project stalled and, faced with a final price tag of $8 billion, the Tennessee Valley Authority decided to quit while it was behind.

October 18, 2016 – The Guardian – MIT nuclear fusion record marks latest step towards unlimited clean energy – A nuclear fusion world record has been set in the US, marking another step on the long road towards the unlocking of limitless clean energy. A team at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) created the highest plasma pressure ever recorded, using its Alcator C-Mod tokamak reactor. High pressures and extreme temperatures are vital in forcing atoms together to release huge amounts of energy. Nuclear fusion powers the sun and has long been touted as the ultimate solution to powering the world while halting climate change. But, as fusion sceptics often say, the reality has stubbornly remained a decade or two away for many years.

October 18, 2016 – Monticello Times – Radiological preparedness excercise scheduled this week at Monticello nuclear plant – The Minnesota Department of Public Safety Homeland Security and Emergency Management (DPS-HSEM), the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the Federal Radiological Monitoring Assessment Center (FRMAC) will conduct a radiological emergency preparedness exercise around the Monticello Nuclear Generating Plant this week (Oct. 17-21). The Northern Lights exercise will involve helicopter flights between the areas of Monticello and Camp Ripley. The helicopter may also fly over Benton, Cass, Morrison, Sherburne, Stearns, Todd, Wadena and Wright counties, stated a Minnesota Department of Public Safety news advisory issued this morning (Monday, Oct. 17).

October 18, 2016 – Kansas City Star – Anti-nuke priest still is spreading the word — and red paint – When the judge called the defendant’s name for the last hearing of the day, a gruff and hearty “Here!” came from the back of the courtroom. The Rev. Carl Kabat, a Catholic priest, rose and walked to the front of Courtroom G. He’s 83, used a cane and wore white sneakers. He wasn’t looking to beat the rap. He was looking for a fight. Facing charges of trespassing and destruction of property for splashing red paint on the door of the Honeywell plant in south Kansas City on July 4, Kabat wanted to put the federal government on trial for making nuclear weapons. “Nuclear weapons are insane,” Kabat, part of the original Plowshares Eight, said outside before his appearance in Kansas City Municipal Court. “These things will kill everybody. When did we vote to have them? No one ever did.”

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October 17, 2016 – 81 FR 71543-71544 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards; Procedures for Meetings – This notice describes procedures to be followed with respect to meetings conducted by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s (NRC’s) Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards (ACRS) pursuant to the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA). These procedures are set forth so that they may be incorporated by reference in future notices for individual meetings. The ACRS is a statutory advisory Committee established by Congress to review and report on nuclear safety matters and applications for the licensing of nuclear facilities. The Committee’s reports become a part of the public record. The ACRS meetings are conducted in accordance with FACA; they are normally open to the public and provide opportunities for oral or written statements from  members of the public to be considered as part of the Committee’s information gathering process. ACRS reviews do not normally encompass matters pertaining to environmental impacts other than those related to radiological safety. The ACRS meetings are not adjudicatory hearings such as those conducted by the NRC’s Atomic Safety and Licensing Board Panel as part of the Commission’s licensing process.

October 17, 2016 – 81 FR 71331-71348 – DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY – Procedures for Determining Eligibility for Access to Classified Matter or Special Nuclear Material – The Department of Energy (DOE) is amending its regulations which set forth the policies and procedures for resolving questions concerning eligibility for DOE access authorization. The revisions update and provide added clarity throughout the regulations, and streamline the process for resolving access authorization eligibility determinations. Additionally, DOE is updating references to DOE Offices and officials to reflect the current DOE organizational structure.

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October 17, 2016 – Press Pieces

On October 17th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

October 17, 2016 – Clarkesville Online – NASA looks to use New Material to boost power in Spacecraft Nuclear Cells – No extension cord is long enough to reach another planet, and there’s no spacecraft charging station along the way. That’s why researchers are hard at work on ways to make spacecraft power systems more efficient, resilient and long-lasting. “NASA needs reliable long-term power systems to advance exploration of the solar system,” said Jean-Pierre Fleurial, supervisor for the thermal energy conversion research and advancement group at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California. “This is particularly important for the outer planets, where the intensity of sunlight is only a few percent as strong as it is in Earth orbit.” A cutting-edge development in spacecraft power systems is a class of materials with an unfamiliar name: skutterudites (skut-ta-RU-dites). Researchers are studying the use of these advanced materials in a proposed next-generation power system called an eMMRTG, which stands for Enhanced Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator.

October 17, 2016 – The Australian – Australia joins international search for fusion energy – Australia has avoided paying $346 million to join the world’s biggest physics project by trading our expertise for entry into a program to create the carbon-free ­energy of the sun and stars. It is the first time in 35 years a nation outside the founding nine members has been admitted to the global collaboration to produce energy from fusion. It is also the first time a member has been admitted without paying at least €240m ($346m) as an entry fee to finance the research and development of a fusion ­reactor. Instead of paying the fee, Australia is providing its expertise and technology in analysing the ­behaviour of plasma, which draws energy from the conversion of ­hydrogen to helium. The first plasma for the basis of a fusion reaction is timed to be produced in 2026, with the first power expected about 2033.

October 17, 2016 – EarthIsland.org – No Justice for the Marshall Islands In Nuclear Weapons Contamination Caseby Tom Arms – The residents of the Marshall Islands are the ultimate modern age victims. If they don’t die from cancer inflicted by nuclear testing they will drown from rising sea levels caused by climate change. Like most victims, they sought justice. But the International Court of Justice at The Hague refused it on what was effectively a diplomatic-cum-legal technicality. The Marshall Islands — population 54,000 — are two parallel strings of islands covering 750,000 square miles of the South Pacific. Their best known piece of real estate is Bikini Atoll. In the aftermath of World War Two, the United States was given responsibility for administering and looking after the welfare of the islanders. It did this by exploding 67 nuclear devices on Bikini Atoll and other parts of the Marshall Islands. Over a 12-year period the US exploded the equivalent of 200 kilotons a day. The bomb dropped on Hiroshima was 15 kilotons.

October 17, 2016 – domain-B.com – Poof! The weird case of the X-ray that came out blank – Imagine getting a medical X-ray that comes out blank – as if your bones had vanished. That’s what happened when scientists cranked up the intensity of the world’s first X-ray laser, at the Department of Energy’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, to get a better look at a sample they were studying: The X-rays seemed to go right through it as if it were not there. This result was so weird that the leader of the experiment, SLAC Professor Joachim Stöhr, devoted the next three years to developing a theory that explains why it happened. Now his team has published a paper in Physical Review Letters describing the 2012 experiment for the first time. What they saw was a so-called non-linear effect where more than one photon, or particle of X-ray light, enters a sample at the same time, and they team up to cause unexpected things to happen.

October 17, 2016 – iTV News – 60th anniversary of world’s first nuclear power station – Today marks 60 years since the opening of the world’s first commercial nuclear power station at Calder Hall in west Cumbria. The Queen carried out the ceremony on October the 17th 1956. The plant produced electricity for the national grid for almost 50 years. On that day the Queen announced: “It is with pride that I now open Calder Hall, Britain’s first Atomic power station.” It was the first time the immense power of nuclear energy was to be harnessed for a peaceful use – to produce electricity on a commercial scale for homes and businesses around Britain. The first town to receive electricity direct from Calder Hall was Workington. The opening of the four reactors followed a huge construction process over the previous three years involving thousands of workers.

October 17, 2016 – Daily Mail – Atomic-sized ‘MRI scanners’ may lead to new drugs: Quantum bits will pick up the structure of single molecules – MRI scanners use magnetic fields to produce 3D views of structures. But quantum bits, or qubits, could also be used to sense magnetic fields. Researchers hope to use them as highly sensitive quantum scanners. This could reveal the atomic structures of samples, leading to new drugs.

October 17, 2016 – Greek Reporter – Using X-Rays and Periodic Table to Reveal Techniques That Created Ancient Greek Pottery – Art experts are using science to uncover the special methods used by artists who created pottery in Ancient Greece. In a joint effort, the Cantor Arts Center’s Art + Science Learning Lab, art and science faculty, and the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource (SSRL) at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory have teamed up to reveal some surprising techniques by using X-rays and elements of the periodic table. The pottery is being scanned in such a way that it is literally being read in elements from iron, potassium, calcium and zinc- all identified in neon colors. This discovery is not only exciting, but shows that there is much more than meets the eye in many pieces of art. Director of the Learning Lab, Susan Roberts-Manganelli is thrilled about the new breakthroughs and joint efforts in discovery, as she commented to phys.org: “You can’t do science, art history or conservation in isolation. We all thought we could at one time, but now we realize we are stronger and better as a group.”

October 17, 2016 – The Pioneer – China decommissions its 1st nuclear submarine – China’s first nuclear-powered submarine has been decommissioned after more than 40 years of military service, media said on Sunday. After undergoing a thorough denuclearisation process, the submarine was towed to a wharf belonging to the Chinese Navy Museum in Qingdao, a port city in east China’s Shandong province where it will be a public exhibit, State- run Xinhua news agency reported. The submarine’s release from military service and the safe, thorough and reliable handling of related nuclear waste, nuclear reactor and other devices showed China’s life-cycle maintenance ability, the report quoted the naval authorities as saying.

October 17, 2016 – Toronto Star – Canada’s euphemistic search for a place to bury nuclear waste: Walkom – The headline in the Lucknow Sentinel said it all. “Conversations begin to explore connections between APM project and community well-being,” it read. Indeed they have. As the full-page ad in the Southwestern Ontario weekly reported this month, such “conversations” have been going full-tilt in eight small Ontario communities as a federal agency searches for a place willing to store highly radioactive spent-fuel rods from Canada’s nuclear power plants. Four of the eight are on or near Lake Huron, including the township of Huron-Kinloss, which is where Lucknow is situated. An observer from, say, Mars might think a highly radioactive nuclear dump would be a hard sell.

October 17, 2016 – Power Engineering International – Brexit could hurt Hinkley nuclear progress – Brexit could have damaging implications for the development of the Hinkley Point C nuclear power project. The project has already overcome legal obstacles, conflict within the EDF board, delayed UK government approval and other various issues, but Brexit now threatens the ability of the project’s developers to bring in the skilled personnel it needs to produce the facility. City AM reports that the engineering industry, which contributes £280bn to the economy, has said that a restriction on access to skills could delay the building of major infrastructure projects such as Hinkley Point C as it increases the expense for projects if demand for skilled engineers outstrips supply.

October 17, 2016 – Daily Mail – Bulgarian prosecutors charge two former executives over nuclear project – Bulgaria’s prosecutors have charged two former directors of state electricity firm NEK with causing financial damage by signing a nuclear deal that cost the business more than 77 million euros ($86 million). Bulgaria cancelled its 10 billion euro Belene project with Russia’s Atomstroyexport in 2012 after failing to find foreign investors and under pressure from Brussels and Washington to limit its energy dependence on Russia. NEK now has to pay over 620 million euros ($695 million) in compensation to Atomstroyexport over the project, which analysts and politicians say reflects widespread corruption. On Friday, Sofia City Prosecution accused Ludomir Velkov and Madrik Papazian of signing a 205 million euro deal to sell the ageing nuclear equipment to Atomstroyexport in 2007 and agreed to take all transport and tax expenses.

October 17, 2016 – The Japan News – New governor should calmly discuss Niigata nuclear plant reactivation – It is necessary to steadily reactivate nuclear power plants whose safety has been confirmed. The newly elected Niigata governor should calmly consider this. Ryuichi Yoneyama, a medical doctor recommended by three opposition parties —the Japanese Communist Party, the Liberal Party (previously known as the People’s Life Party) and the Social Democratic Party — has been elected for the first time in the Niigata gubernatorial election. He defeated, among others, Tamio Mori, a former Nagaoka mayor endorsed by the Liberal Democratic Party and Komeito.

October 17, 2016 – Fossbytes – Hackers Successfully Attacked A Nuclear Power Plant — Is Anything Safe Anymore? – The International Atomic Energy Agency Director, Yukiya Amano, has revealed that a nuclear power plant was attacked by the hackers about 2-3 years ago. While Mr. Amano declined to reveal the name of the exact power plant, he said that hacking risk is not imaginary and more stringent measures should be take to safeguard the nuclear facilities. The notorious hackers surely know how to leave an impact and create a tensed environment. Unlike the regular dose of data breach news, seldom we read about a nuclear power plant getting hacked. Yukiya Amano, the International Atomic Energy Agency Director, has told Reuters that a nuclear power plant was successfully attacked by the hackers about 2-3 years ago. While it didn’t cause the plant to completely shut down, it disrupted the power plant. He declined to mention which particular nuclear power plant was involved in the attack.

October 17, 2016 – WTVC 9 – TVA sets auction date for unfinished nuclear plant – The Tennessee Valley Authority is giving up on a project that was supposed to become one of its biggest nuclear power plants. TVA is selling the 1,400-acre site in northeast Alabama. TVA said Friday it set a Nov. 14 auction date to sell its unfinished Bellefonte nuclear power plant. TVA directors declared the unfinished nuclear plant to be surplus property earlier this year – 43 years after construction began on the complex. The utility says the primary goal in selling the site is to provide the best long-term economic return to surrounding communities.

October 17, 2016 – 24 News HD – Pakistan’s fourth nuclear power plant operational – Pakistan’s fourth nuclear power plant has started the production. reported 24 News. “340 MW will be included in the national grid through this plant.” “Congratulation to the nation that Pakistan’s 4th nuclear power plant Chashma Unit-3(C-3) has been connected to the national grid,” the PAEC sources said and added that supply of electricity generated by this unit to the national grid had been started on trial basis. The spokesperson of Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) told media that after phasing through functional and safety measures, the plant will be fully functional by early December. “Henceforth the formal inauguration ceremony will be held in December,” he added. On achieving the mile stone, the head of PAEC Muhammad Naeem re-affirmed that the scientists, technicians and engineers were working hard to achieve all the targets to ensure nuclear security of Pakistan.

October 17, 2016 – ABC.az – Czech Republic displays an interest to Azerbaijan’s nuclear research – The Institute of Physics under the National Academy of Sciences of Azerbaijan (AMEA) informs that Ivan Ştekl, the director of the Institute of Applied & Experimental Physics at the Czech Technical University, paid a visit to the Institute of Physics. He was familiarized with the equipment and activities of the Azerbaijani Institute and gave high estimate to them. The visit took place within the framework of the Days of the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research (JINR) in Baku.

October 17, 2016 – News 24 – Clear on Nuclear? – I’m not a power generation expert, nor an economist, so I’m in no position to give any authoritative view on whether our country should invest in nuclear power. I don’t know what our future power needs will be and the short fall we will have once our “new” coal-powered stations are delivered. I don’t know of the real dangers of nuclear but so-called experts tell us they’re actually safer than coal power stations. Who to believe? What I can do is express observations and an armchair critic opinion on those things which concern me. Surely that is all the populace can do and hope the powers-that-be who love to silence our voices and drive their own agendas actually listen to us for once. Are my views worth more than my neighbours? Surely not, we all have a voice, an equal voice called democracy.

October 17, 2016 – WRVO – When it comes to nuclear power, does Cuomo favor politics over policy? – Gov. Andrew Cuomo has spent the past year walking a fine line between environmentalists who believe nuclear power is a necessary evil in reducing the state’s carbon dioxide emissions and those who think the plants pose too great a danger. But, Cuomo is no stranger to this kind of juggling act on nuclear policy. When the Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant experienced a recent oil leak that could have made its way into the Hudson River, Cuomo seemed to fall into what’s become a standard routine: issue a statement, visit the plant and express grave concern about Indian Point’s continued operation. “This plant, since 2011, there have been over 40 extraordinary incidents,” Cuomo said. “We have had tritium leaks, we have had steam leaks, we have had a fire in a transformer, we’ve had turbine failures, pump failures, weld failures, high levels of radioactivity in groundwater. So, this plant is no stranger to dangerous situations.”

October 17, 2016 – Daily News & Analysis – Bacteria may help prevent radioactive leaks: Study – Naturally occurring bacteria could consume pent-up hydrogen gas in nuclear waste repositories to prevent radioactive leaks, a new study has found. A research team led by Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) in Switzerland discovered a microbial community made up of seven species of bacteria that live naturally hundreds of meters underground in the very rock layers that have been chosen to host Swiss nuclear waste.

October 17, 2016 – ABC News – Washington State Seeks to Protect Nuclear Site Workers – Washington state asked a federal judge Wednesday to issue an injunction requiring the U.S. Department of Energy and its contractor to take steps to protect workers at a major nuclear waste storage site. Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson says more than 50 workers at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation have been exposed to toxic vapors and the “culture of indifference to worker safety must end.” From January through July, Hanford workers reported suspicious smells or symptoms that indicate exposure to chemical vapors, according to The Tri-City Herald. ( http://bit.ly/2dVsCtf ) U.S. District Chief Judge Thomas Rice in Spokane heard arguments on the safety issue and the federal agency’s motion to dismiss the lawsuit. Rice said he would rule at a later date.

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October 13, 2016 – No relevant citations.

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October 13, 2016 – Press Pieces

On October 13th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

October 13, 2016 – Columbus Dispatch – Film pulls back the curtain on Arkansas nuke disaster that wasn’t – On Sept. 18, 1980, Air Force officials struggled desperately to prevent an American thermonuclear warhead from blasting Arkansas off the map. “Before Sept. 18, the only warheads that we thought would go off in the United States were Soviet warheads,” Allan Childers, a former missile-complex crew member, says in the documentary “ Command and Control,” which chronicles the events of that day. “We never considered that our warheads could detonate on our own continent.” The film, directed by Robert Kenner and based on the book by Eric Schlosser, will open on Friday at the Gateway Film Center. It centers on a critical moment in American history that few people know about. If the warhead had detonated, the blast and radioactive fallout would have killed millions of Americans.

October 13, 2016 – The Japan News – Accelerate water-purifying work at Fukushima plant to cut leakage risk – The volume of contaminated water continues to increase at Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.’s Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant. Efforts to deal with this problem must be reinforced. TEPCO has compiled a new set of measures to deal with the radioactive water. The steps are aimed at reducing to nearly zero the contaminated water inside reactor buildings, the prime source of the tainted water. Under the new measures, the contaminated water accumulated in the basements of reactor buildings is to be purified and then transferred to storage tanks. At the same time, facilities exclusively used for purifying the tainted water are to be doubled, and the existing storage tanks will be replaced with larger ones, increasing the overall storage capacity.

October 13, 2016 – Business Wire – Carestream Ultrasound Systems Receive Health Canada License – CARESTREAM Touch Prime and Touch Prime XE Ultrasound Systems (video link) have received a Health Canada license and are currently available for sale in Canada as well as the United States. “Our ultrasound systems provide exceptional image quality and streamline measurements to expedite clinician access to critical imaging information while boosting staff productivity” The Touch Ultrasound platform’s design is based upon recommendations by sonographers and ultrasound professionals across the world and offers an all-touch user interface, compact profile, easy maneuverability and adjustable features. Swipe-and-go system activation configures the interface to each user’s preferences and a bar code reader reduces key strokes to save time. Its glass console is easy to clean and wireless connectivity provides rapid transfer of images and data to PACS, RIS or other systems. Carestream offers specialized transducers for radiology, OB/GYN, musculoskeletal and vascular imaging.

October 13, 2016 – Vanguard – China bans X-ray scanners at airports – China has ordered the removal of full-body X-ray scanners at airports and railway stations due to radiation risks. In an urgent document sent to the Department of Environmental Protection of Sichuan Province (DEPSP) on Monday and published on Wednesday, the Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP) urged DEPSP to strengthen law enforcement and stop producing, selling and using full-body X-ray scanners without authorisation to ensure the safety of the people. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); The document came after some travellers complained about radiation hazards and the use of full-body security scanners at airports and railways stations in Sichuan’s capital city Chengdu and other areas.

October 13, 2016 – Scicasts – New Atomic-Scale MRI System Holds Promise for New Drug Discovery – Researchers at the University of Melbourne have developed a way to radically miniaturise a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) machine using atomic-scale quantum computer technology. Capable of imaging the structure of a single bio-molecule, the new system would overcome significant technological challenges and provide an important new tool for biotechnology and drug discovery. The team propose the use of atomic-sized quantum bits (qubits) normally associated with the development of quantum computers, but here would be employed as highly sensitive quantum sensors to image the individual atoms in a bio-molecule.

October 13, 2016 – New Haven Independent – Nuke “Safety” – In 1958, officials at the new Fire Department training school reported on how they’d handle “peace-time radiation which will develop when atomic power is used in local industries.” Welcome to This Day In Fire Prevention History, as your host Allan Appel and the New Haven Museum’s Jason Bischoff Wurstle travel back in time.

October 13, 2016 – RTT News – Denison Acquires 80% Ownership In Hook-Carter Property – Denison Mines Corp. (DML.TO,DNN) announced it has executed a definitive agreement with ALX Uranium Corp. (AL.V) to acquire an immediate 80% ownership of the entire Hook-Carter property in exchange for the issuance of 7.5 million common shares of Denison. The Property consists of 28 claims, totaling 16,805 hectares, and is located near the southwestern margin of the Athabasca Basin, in northern Saskatchewan. Denison’s CEO, David Cates, stated: “While this transaction expands Denison’s project portfolio into the western side of the Athabasca Basin, Denison remains focused on advancing our flagship Wheeler River property in the infrastructure rich eastern portion of the Athabasca Basin. The acquisition of the Hook-Carter property is about building our project pipeline and generating our own success in the very exciting western portion of the Athabasca Basin. We believe the western Basin has the potential to emerge as a mining camp in the long-term, and could eventually represent an important part of the uranium mining industry in Canada.”

October 13, 2016 – Can-India.com – Homes should be tested for cancer gas Radon – In North American homes, smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors are common devices. But while homeowners may think that these monitors are sufficient for ensuring their families’ wellness and safety, there is another gas that needs to be detected which is equally as important for health and wellness: radon. Radon exposure is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers and the second leading cause for smokers, claiming the lives of approximately 21,000 Americans each year. That’s more than five times the number of deaths attributed annually to carbon monoxide poisoning and house fires.

October 13, 2016 – Quartz – Want to go to Mars? Be prepared for irreversible damage to your brain – You can’t go many days without someone talking about going to Mars. Just in the last few weeks: Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX, laid out his plans to sell tickets to the red planet for $200,000; Dennis Muilenburg, CEO of Boeing, vowed to get there before Musk; and US president Barack Obama reiterated his plans to send humans to Mars by 2030. Before these fantasies become reality, there are many problems to overcome. One of them might be the most difficult: how to stop astronauts from suffering irreversible damage to brain functions that are crucial to completing a space mission? This damage is predicted to be caused by space radiation. When we’re on Earth, the planet’s magnetic field shields us from most of it. A spacecraft’s hull can’t provide that level of protection. The result, a 2015 study predicted, would be brain damage that would affect astronauts’ cognitive powers.

October 13, 2016 – dprem.com – Proton therapy: A new hope for cancer treatment – Proton Therapy, alternative of Proton Beam Therapy, is a form of radiation treatment highly effective in treating different types of cancer. As the name implies, it involves a beam of protons (positively charged particles) instead of X- Ray beam. Protons at a high energy state have immense ability to destroy the cancer cells. Our body tissues are comprised of innumerable molecules with atoms being the basic building blocks. Negatively charged electrons orbit around the nucleus of each atom. High energy protons while passed through the electrons cause ionization of those atoms pulling electrons off their orbits. Ionization causes a considerable change in the characteristics of the atom and consequently the molecules too undergo subsequent changes that ultimately damage the genetic constituent of the tissues. It has a beneficial aspect in destroying the cancer cells but care should be taken not to cause any damage to the surrounding cells and tissues. Radiation therapy of any kind is based on this cell ionization principle.

October 13, 2016 – DC Velocity – CERN Uses Automatic Hook to Lift Concrete Beam During Irradiation Tests – CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, is using an automatic hook from Barcelona, Spain-based manufacturer Elebia to lift and lower a 750kg concrete beam used for radiation tests at the Franco-Swiss site. At CERN, physicists and engineers are probing the fundamental structure of the universe. They use the world’s largest and most complex scientific instruments to study the basic constituents of matter—the fundamental particles. The 2.5t capacity e2 automatic hook works beneath a 25t capacity overhead crane with a 10t capacity hoist, which combine to lower the beam that contains samples for irradiation (a process by which an object is exposed to radiation) at the shielding benchmark facility.

October 13, 2016 – Indian Express – India, Russia ink pact to set up 25 irradiation centers for perishable food – India and Russia Thursday signed a pact to set up 25 integrated infrastructure centers for irradiation treatment of perishable food items to improve shelf life and cut post-harvest losses. At least 7 centers will be set up in Maharashtra, with the first centre near Shirdi to be ready next year. Perishable items ranging from flowers to fish will be treated there on a commercial scale. The agreement was signed between Russia’s United Innovation Corporation (UIC) — a subsidiary of Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation — and Hindustan Agro Co-op Ltd on the sidelines of the BRICS Business Forum here.

October 13, 2016 – Independent – University of Malta researchers contribute toward world’s largest nuclear fusion reactor – Researchers at the University of Malta are contributing toward the construction of the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER), a €20 billion nuclear fusion reactor that aims to ‘ignite a star on Earth for energy’. The reactor, known as a tokamak, is being constructed in Cadarache, France and it will be the world’s largest machine of its kind. The European Union, the United States, Russia, China, India, Japan and South Korea have all joined forces to build this international experimental magnetic confinement machine to prove the feasibility of nuclear fusion as a large-scale and carbon-free source of energy based on the same principle that powers our Sun and stars. ITER is designed to produce net energy and maintain fusion reactions for long periods of time. It will be the first fusion device to test the integrated technologies, materials and physics regimes necessary to build power plants for the commercial production of fusion-based electricity.

October 13, 2016 – Daily Mail – EDF CEO says hopes more nuclear reactors will return online by year-end – The chief executive of French utility EDF said on Thursday he hoped more offline nuclear reactors could return to production before the end of the year, following reports that France could face tight supplies this winter. “We are working to make sure reactors that are on outage resume production,” EDF CEO Jean-Bernard Levy told reporters. “We are still carrying out demonstrations with ASN and we hope that some of these reactors will resume production by the end of the year,” he said.

October 13, 2016 – Novinite – Bulgaria Mulls Completing Belene Nuclear Plant through Privatization – Bulgarian authorities are exploring options to privatize Belene nuclear power plant (NPP) project, Deputy Prime Minister Tomislav Donchev has said. Russia has given its consent in principle, the Bulgarian National Radio quotes him as saying. Donchev has underlined the need to “halt the clock of interest,” in a reference to the EUR 0.167 M piled up on the EUR 620 M principal on a daily basis since June. The controversial project, on which Bulgaria was working with Russia, was abandoned during Boyko Borisov’s first term as Prime Minister. In June, however, Bulgaria was told by an arbitration court to pay hundreds of millions of EUR to Atomstroyexport, the Russian company which had already produced a reactor and some equipment for the plant.

October 13, 2016 – Times Live – ‘Zuptas’ insisting on nuclear build programme because they have taken a bribe from Russia – “Zuma and the Guptas – or the Zuptas as we call them – are primarily responsible for the insistence on the nuclear building programme which will cost South Africa more than R1 trillion because they have already accepted a bribe from the Russians. “The recent announcement by Eskom CEO Brian Molefe and a Gupta agent that Eskom will implement a nuclear building programme is part of the corrupt insistence of the Gupta family to make corrupt gains out of the programme. “The reality is‚ if the programme continues to go ahead‚ South Africa will be deprived of all the resources needed for basic services‚” Malema said.

October 13, 2016 – Richmond Times-Dispatch – Va. man, woman who entered Pa. nuclear plant property enter pleas – A Virginia couple who entered the property of a Pennsylvania nuclear plant after they say they got lost pleaded guilty to some charges in exchange for no additional jail time. Timothy Stewart, 29, and Jenilee Simpson, 33, both of Chesapeake, entered the pleas Tuesday in York County Court. Authorities said they were driving to New York on May 27 and cut the chain at Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station while trying to get on the right road. Stewart told the court he was lost and had not gotten a lot of sleep. He had bolt cutters because he was “going to use them to work at a carnival,” the York Daily Record reported.

October 13, 2016 – IOL – When a ‘radiological hotspot’ is your home – Thandeka Mkhehlane pushes her twins in their dusty second-hand pram, navigating the dirty, narrow alleys that separate the shacks of Tudor Shaft, an informal settlement on the forlorn fringes of Krugersdorp. She would rather be anywhere but here. The bleak shack where she is raising her three sons – the eldest is nine – is less than 10m from the yellow mine dump that encircles Tudor Shaft, and which she blames for her children’s near-constant poor health. The Tudor Shaft community in Krugersdorp is living in terrible danger. Some of the residents have been relocated, while those remaining believe they’ve been forgotten. When it rains, the tailings from the mound of toxic soil pour into her and her neighbours’ homes. And there’s nowhere to escape when the dust billows. “My children are always sick,” says Mkhehlane, looking worried. “They have runny noses and rashes that don’t go away. They struggle to breathe. I need to leave this place for the sake of my children’s health. It’s a disaster.”

October 13, 2016 – The Recorder – In ‘Power Struggle,’ filmmaker explores efforts to shut down Vt. Yankee – When Entergy Corp. announced plans to shut down its Vermont Yankee nuclear plant in August 2013, Wendell filmmaker Robbie Leppzer had already been filming his documentary for 3½ years. Leppzer, whose latest film, “Power Struggle” chronicles the conflicts over the Vernon, Vt. reactor’s relicensing, will be screened in an Oct. 23 “sneak preview” 2 p.m. showing at the Academy of Music in Northampton, as well as a Nov. 3 showing at the Latchis Theater in Brattleboro, Vt. The 104-minute film, for which Leppzer is trying to raise $10,000 for post-production work, will be aired on HBO sometime next year, says the documentary filmmaker. He also received support from NHK, the Japanese Broadcasting Corporation.

October 13, 2016 – Science Daily – Novel imaging technique with potential for medical diagnostics – A unique new imaging method, called “polarized nuclear imaging” — combining powerful aspects of both magnetic resonance imaging and gamma-ray imaging and developed by two physicists in the University of Virginia’s departments of Physics and Radiology — has potential for new types of high-resolution medical diagnostics as well as industrial and physics research applications. “This method makes possible a truly new, absolutely different class of medical diagnostics,” said Wilson Miller, who, along with his colleague Gordon Cates, directed the research. “We’re combining the advantages of using highly detectable nuclear tracers with the spectral sensitivity and diagnostic power of MRI techniques.”

October 13, 2016 – GCR – China designs “baby reactors” to power islands in South China Sea – A Chinese research institute has developed a nuclear reactor small enough to transport in a shipping crate, with the aim of deploying it on islands in the South China Sea in the next five years. Just 6.1m long and 2.6m high, it can generate 10MW of electricity, enough to run 50,000 households and provide heat to desalinate seawater, reports The South China Morning Post. Called the hedianbao, or “portable nuclear battery pack”, the “baby” reactor is being developed by the Chinese Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Nuclear Energy Safety Technology. The design is derived from reactors installed in Soviet nuclear submarines in the 1970s. It uses fast neutrons to minimise waste and molten lead as a coolant, and if it meets its goals, it will be able to produce power continuously for decades without refuelling.

October 13, 2016 – NewsInEnglish.no – Nuclear reactors closing down – Norway’s two aging nuclear reactors, located in Halden and Kjeller, are being shut down in what officials are calling a “temporary” move but one that has set off speculation over whether they’ll ever be reopened. Magazine Teknisk Ukeblad reported this week that the reason for the shutdown was largely financial, after lower oil prices led to a slowdown in the energy industry and a fall in the number of research assignments coming in to Norway’s Institute for Energy Technology (IFE), which operates them. Companies using nuclear energy are also struggling as a result of more use of alternative and renewable energy, reported the magazine.
A total of 127 IFE employees will be laid off or furloughed in the coming weeks, 72 in Halden and 55 in Kjeller. Some will be kept on to work 50 percent at the reactors, both of which date from the 1950s and have been dedicated to international research projects under the OECD’s Nuclear Energy Agency.

October 13, 2016 – Blue & Green Tomorrow – Risky Move Toward Nuclear Energy Taken At Hinkley Point – Following a final six-week review and after agreeing a ‘golden share’ deal, the UK Government has given the green light to two nuclear reactors at Hinkley Point in Somerset. The controversial move will see the first new nuclear plant built in the UK for 20 years. As a leader on tackling climate change, the decision can be viewed as a major milestone to achieving a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions of 80% by 2050. Low and zero carbon sources represented slightly less than 50% of the UK energy mix in 2015. At 20%, nuclear power is the fourth biggest source of energy after gas, renewables and coal – contributing significantly to the 38% drop in greenhouse gas emissions since 1990. So why do I have reservations?

October 13, 2016 – KOMO News – Washington state seeks to protect Hanford workers – Washington state wants a federal judge to issue an injunction requiring the Department of Energy and its contractor to take steps to protect workers at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation. The Tri-City Herald reports that from January through July, Hanford workers reported suspicious smells or symptoms that indicate exposure to chemical vapors.
The Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson says more than 50 workers have been exposed to toxic vapors and the “culture of indifference to worker safety must end.” The state plans to make that argument during a federal hearing set for Wednesday morning in Spokane. The agency has claimed that the plaintiffs in the case have not shown harm to Hanford workers from vapors. It has argued that symptoms like headaches are common and don’t necessarily indicate exposure to vapors.

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October 12, 2016 – 81 FR 70444-70446 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – In the Matter of AREVA Enrichment Services, LLC, AREVA, Inc.; Order Approving Change of Control of Licenses and Conforming Amendments – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is issuing an Order approving a request, submitted by AREVA Inc., seeking the NRC’s consent to the following license transfers: (1) The indirect transfer of control of special nuclear material (SNM) License SNM-2015, regarding the Eagle Rock Enrichment Facility, that authorizes the future construction and operation of this uranium enrichment facility in Bonneville County, Idaho, (2) the direct transfer of control of source material License SUA-672, regarding the former Lucky Mc uranium mill, and its existing tailings site, in Fremont County, Wyoming, and (3) the direct transfer of control of Export Licenses XSNM3643, XSNM3722, and XSOU8780. In addition, AREVA Inc. requested approval of conforming license amendments to reflect the new names of AREVA corporate entities associated with the license transfers due to the reorganization of the AREVA family of companies. AREVA Inc. also requested NRC confirmation that the proposed reorganization would not involve any transfer of control of Construction Authorization (CA) Number CAMOX-001, for the MOX Fuel Fabrication Facility that is being constructed on a site near Aiken, South Carolina.

October 12, 2016 – 81 FR 70401-70402 – DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY – Environmental Management Site-Specific Advisory Board, Idaho National Laboratory – This notice announces a meeting of the Environmental Management Site-Specific Advisory Board (EM SSAB), Idaho National Laboratory. The Federal Advisory Committee Act (Pub. L. 92-463, 86 Stat. 770) requires that public notice of this meeting be announced in the Federal Register. DATES: Thursday, October 27, 2016–8:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. The opportunity for public comment is at 3:15 p.m. This time is subject to change; please contact the Federal Coordinator (below) for confirmation of times prior to the meeting. ADDRESSES: Sun Valley Inn, 1 Sun Valley Road, Sun Valley, ID 83353. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Robert L. Pence, Federal Coordinator, Department of Energy, Idaho Operations Office, 1955 Fremont Avenue, MS-1203, Idaho Falls, Idaho 83415. Phone (208) 526-6518; Fax (208) 526-8789 or email: pencerl@id.doe.gov or visit the Board’s Internet home page at: http://inlcab.energy.gov/. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Purpose of the Board: The purpose of the Board is to make recommendations to DOE-EM and site management in the areas of environmental restoration, waste management, and related activities.

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October 12, 2016 – Press Pieces

On October 12th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

October 12, 2016 – Live Science – Alien Life May Munch on Galactic Cosmic Rays – Extreme microbes that live in hostile places on Earth may feed off of cosmic rays that zip through space, according to a study of a bizarre bacterium thriving deep in a dark gold mine. If life exists on other planets such as Mars, it too could be gobbling up cosmic rays in order to survive, the new study suggests. “When you have radiation penetrating deep below the surface, where there might be water on Mars or [Jupiter’s moon] Europa, then it could start chemical reactions that life could use,” said study author Dimitra Atri, a research scientist at the Blue Marble Space Institute of Science in Seattle. Organisms that live off of galactic cosmic rays could even dwell on rogue planets that are not bound to any star and instead drift throughout interstellar space, Atri added.

October 12, 2016 – Dataconomy – How An App Could Be The Key In Avoiding The Risks of Radiation – Whether it be diagnostics, treatment, or even a rehabilitation process, all medical procedures have an obvious goal: bringing benefits to patients. For instance, sonography requires using ultrasound waves for examining soft tissues; magnetic resonance, in turn, involves magnetic fields to make images. Neither waves nor magnets have negative influence on a person’s organism. Biopsies, for example, which are procedures to take person’s cells, are also harmless. However, some medical operations have adverse effects. I’m referring to computed tomography, fluoroscopy (chest X-ray, dental X-ray, mammography, angiography), as well as the usage of radionuclide pharmaceuticals to diagnose and treat patients within nuclear medicine imaging. These procedures expose the patient to ionizing radiation, putting them at risk of developing carcinogenic tumors. And if we speak about fluoroscopy procedures, in particular, here there are also risks for patients to suffer from serious X-ray induced skin injuries.

October 12, 2016 – Update.ph – China donates modern X-ray baggage scanner to Philippine airport – A modern X-ray baggage scanner is now in place at the Laoag International Airport courtesy of the Peoples Republic of China. In a simple ribbon cutting ceremony held at the Laoag Airport on Wednesday, Zhiao Quiaoliang, head of the Chinese Consulate Center in Laoag City, officially turned over the machine to Governor Ma. Imelda Josefa Marcos, representing the province of Ilocos Norte. Pegged at an estimated amount of PHP1million, the X-ray baggage scanner is a great help for the Laoag airport to intensify its security measures while in the process of upgrading its facilities to cater to its growing visitors.

October 12, 2016 – CRIEnglish – Radiation risks found in Chengdu’s airport scanners – China’s top environmental authority has called an emergency halt on some full-body scanners in the southwestern city of Chengdu that allegedly have exposed people to excessive doses of radiation. The authority said in a statement that this type of X-ray scanners in Chengdu’s airport should not be used in public spaces or for the general population. The statement also said that scanners with such high doses of X-ray radiation should register and apply for licenses at the authority before being produced, sold or used. They are also demanding local authorities in Sichuan to probe for possible illegal conduct by producers and other related companies. The full-body scanners in question were first reported to be found at Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport for security checks. Called the “Ultra-weak Photon Full-body Scanner”, reports questioned about the level of radiation dose it has, and also pointed out that there were not enough warnings given to passengers, especially to pregnant women and children, about ionizing radiation.

October 12, 2016 – Creamer Media – South African toxic mine dumps fail citizens, Harvard Body says – South Africa is failing to uphold citizens’ human rights by allowing toxic waste from huge mine dumps in and around Johannesburg to seep into rivers, according to Harvard Law School’s International Human Rights Clinic. The government hasn’t done enough to mitigate the impact of contaminated water from abandoned mines and dust storms from radioactive waste dumps, the IHRC said in an e-mailed statement Wednesday. While a long-term plan announced in May to spend R12-billion ($843-million) cleaning water from mines is a positive, it came more than a decade after polluted water began seeping out west of Johannesburg, the clinic said.

October 12, 2016 – Daily Northshore – ‘Radium Girls’ Opens Oct. 13 at LFHS – Based on a true story that sets American capitalism and the commercialization of science against the question of conscience, Radium Girls opens at Lake Forest High School on Thursday, Oct. 13, 2016. The two-act play by D. W. Gregory kicks off LFHS Theatre’s 2016-17 season. Performances will be at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 13, Friday, Oct. 14, and Saturday, Oct. 15 in the Raymond Moore Auditorium at LFHS. Tickets are $12 for adults and $6 for students and seniors. Business Education faculty member Joseph Pulio directs the play while Director of Theater Dennis Mae provides technical direction and designed the set.

October 12, 2016 – Standard Digital – Innocent food items in your home that are ‘glowing’ with radiation – We interact with – and eat – radioactive materials. But how much radiation are we taking in? Bananas may be an excellent source of potassium and vitamin B6, and avocados may provide good levels of pantothenic acid and dietary fibre, but that’s not all these items bring to the party. The term ‘radioactive’ may prompt images of sickness and disaster to mind, but radiation is being, well, radiated happily away from our own fruit bowls. However, before you vow to never upload another Insta-worthy shot of your avocado on toast ever again, it’s not actually a reason to panic. There are plenty of innocent objects (such as bananas and avocados) which give off radiation.

October 12, 2016 – The Engineer – Marconi inspires pursuit of 1 terabit data transfer – Researchers at Rice University are taking inspiration from radio-pioneer Guglielmo Marconi, as they seek to develop a wireless system capable of transferring 1 terabit of data per second. The team is panning on using pulse-based technology, first demonstrated by Marconi in the early 1900s when he used an antenna connected to a large capacitor. By charging that, he could cause the power to build up until the voltage difference ionised the air gap, causing all the power to be sent to the antenna at once. “Our pulse-based system is inspired by Marconi’s invention, but instead of the power going to a large antenna through an air gap, like Marconi’s, ours goes to an on-chip antenna through a high-speed bipolar transistor,” said research co-lead Aydin Babakhani, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at Rice. The silicon-germanium chip converts a digital trigger to a 5-picosecond pulse of radiation with a frequency spectrum exceeding 1 terahertz. The chip supports a repetition rate up to 10 gigahertz, provides beam-steering capability and contains a two-by-four array of transmitters with antennas that can each be independently programmed with resolution steps of 300 femtoseconds.

October 12, 2016 – The Point – Lawmakers ratify membership of Int’l Atomic Energy Agency – Lawmakers Thursday ratified the country’s membership of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), in a motion tabled by the Minister for Environment and Climate Change, Pa Ousman Jarju. He said the IAEA is a specialised agency of the United Nations, created in 1957 as the ‘world’s Atom for Peace’ organisation to promote safe, secure and peaceful nuclear technologies. He said it comprises 167 member states as of November 2015, although established independently of the United Nations through its own international treaty, the IAEA Statute. The IAEA reports to both the UN General Assembly and the Security Council, he said.

October 12, 2016 – LSE – Foreign investment in critical areas like nuclear power need a formal vetting process – One of the first decisions taken by Theresa May as prime minister was to delay deciding on the £18 billion Hinkley Point nuclear power project. Because it was a centrepiece project as part of former Chancellor George Osborne’s “Golden Age” of closer bilateral ties with China, the issue was instantly politicised, provoking an intense debate in Parliament and across government departments. Defenders of the deal included the Chinese embassy and foreign ministry, which came out publicly to apply pressure on May over the issue. Meanwhile, those close to the Prime Minister pointed out the security risks to Britain’s critical national infrastructure and national security. In the end, a face-saving compromise was reached: the Sino-French consortium would go ahead with the deal with Her Majesty’s Government keeping a majority stake in the company to calm nerves within the security agencies.

October 12, 2016 – IT-Online – More questions around new nuclear build – Eyebrows have been raised at the announcement by Minister of Energy, Tina Joemat-Pettersson that makes Eskom the designated procuring agent for South Africa’s proposed new nuclear build. In fact, Gordon Mackay, shadow minister of energy, calls it “nothing short of an elaborate sleight of hand aimed at muddying the water and subverting effective parliamentary oversight over the R1 trillion nuclear deal.”

October 12, 2016 – Global Times – Vietnam to finalize action plan to mitigate nuclear risks – A workshop concluded Hanoi on Wednesday, representing one of the final steps in drafting Vietnam’s national action plan to mitigate chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear risks. At the three-day workshop, Duong Quoc Hung, Deputy Director General of the Vietnam Agency for Radiation and Nuclear Safety, reiterated the country’s engagement in mitigating the risks, which was welcomed by delegates from the European Union (EU). The plan’s overall purpose is to articulate a national vision for the risk mitigation and to identify priorities for building capacity in this area. The plan is part of the EU Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Centers of Excellence Risk Mitigation Initiative.

October 12, 2016 – ABC 27 – Don’t be alarmed: Peach Bottom nuclear plant to test siren Wednesday – People living near a York County nuclear power plant shouldn’t worry if they hear sirens. Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station on the Susquehanna River is testing one of its sirens Wednesday, October 12th at 10 a.m. The siren is located in Lancaster County and is a part of the emergency warning siren system surrounding Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station. The siren will sound for three minutes, following maintenance, to confirm that it is working. The three-minute blast is a part of a test conducted by the plant’s owner, Exelon Generation.

October 12, 2016 – Wigan Today – Is Lancashire ‘at risk of nuclear contamination’? – Nuclear convoys carrying warheads routinely drive on the M6. If one crashed, or was attacked by terrorists, more than 260,000 people could be in danger of contamination, according to a new report. Nuclear bomb convoys on the M6 are putting more than a quarter of a million people at risk from radioactive contamination in Lancashire, according to a report by campaigners. The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons UK, which compiled the report, is demanding an end to the road convoys which routinely pass close to the city en route from the South of England to Scotland. It claims an accident or an explosion could pose a serious threat to people in a 10-kilometre radius.

October 12, 2016 – Common Space – Hinkley nuclear power station is a Trident weapons “stealth initiative”, expert claims – WESTMINSTER is pouring billions into a dodgy nuclear power project to hide the mammoth development costs of Trident weapons of mass destruction, an Oxford academic has claimed. Peter Wynn Kirby, a nuclear and environmental specialist at the University of Oxford, has accused the UK Government of backing the Hinkley weapons plan “at almost any price” as a means of “hiding the true costs” of Trident nuclear weapons renewal. Kirby, writing for the New York Times, cites a University of Sussex report that considers corporate nuclear development in the energy and military sectors as a means of combining development costs. The claim combines two of the most contentious and unpopular spending decisions of the current UK Government – one to spend beyond £100bn on more weapons of mass destruction, the other to build a costly nuclear power station despite cheaper renewable alternatives.

October 12, 2016 – Express.co.uk – China going NUCLEAR in disputed sea: Atomic reactor to be hidden inside SHIPPING CONTAINER – A nuclear plant is under development in China that would be the world’s smallest – capable of fitting inside a small steel box. Experts say the technology – dubbed the “portable nuclear battery pack” – could be ready within five years. At just 6.1 metres long and 2.6 metres high, the lead-cooled reactor could generate around 10 megawatts of power, enough to power 50,000 homes. Well-suited to the maritime environment of the South China Sea, the reactor is capable of desalinating large quantities of seawater to be used in the plant. However, critics warn that hosting a nuclear reactor at sea would make it vulnerable to catastrophic environmental disasters, including leaks into the ocean which would then spread around the world.

October 12, 2016 – Bloomberg News – Germany, Utilities Said to Agree Nuclear Deal From Feb. 2017 – The German government has reached an agreement in principle with utilities on a nuclear decommissioning pact that will probably go into effect in February, according to a person with direct knowledge of the matter. Utilities from RWE AG to EON SE would have to stump up a combined initial payment of 23.3 billion euros ($25.8 billion) that was proposed by a government commission in April, as well as interest, to free them from their nuclear waste storage liabilities, the person said. A contract has yet to be drawn up, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the talks are private.

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October 11, 2016 – 81 FR 70004-70011 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – List of Approved Spent Fuel Storage Casks: Holtec International HI-STORM 100 Cask System; Certificate of Compliance No. 1014, Amendment No. 10 – On May 31, 2016, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) confirmed the effective date of May 31, 2016, for the direct final rule that was published in the Federal Register on March 14, 2016. The direct final rule amended the NRC’s spent fuel storage regulations by revising the Holtec International (Holtec) HI-STORM 100 Cask System listing within the “List of approved spent fuel storage casks” to include Amendment No. 10 to Certificate of Compliance (CoC) No. 1014. The NRC confirmed the effective date because it determined that none of the comments submitted on the direct final rule met any of the criteria for a significant adverse comment. The purpose of this document is to provide responses to the comments received on the direct final rule.

October 11, 2016 – 81 FR 70190-70191 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Tennessee Valley Authority, Sequoyah Nuclear Plant, Units 1 and 2 – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has granted the request of Tennessee Valley Authority (the licensee) to withdraw its application dated July 3, 2013, for a proposed amendment to DPR-77 and DPR-79. The proposed amendment would have revised Units 1 and 2 Technical Specification \3/4\.6.5, “Ice Condenser.”

October 11, 2016 – 81 FR 70175-70190 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Biweekly Notice; Applications and Amendments to Facility Operating Licenses and Combined Licenses Involving No Significant Hazards Considerations – Pursuant to Section 189a. (2) of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended (the Act), the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is publishing this regular biweekly notice. The Act requires the Commission to publish notice of any amendments issued, or proposed to be issued, and grants the Commission the authority to issue and make immediately effective any amendment to an operating license or combined license, as applicable, upon a determination by the Commission that such amendment involves no significant hazards consideration, notwithstanding the pendency before the Commission of a request for a hearing from any person.

October 11, 2016 – 81 FR 70172-70175 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – In the Matter of Southern Nuclear Operating Co., Inc.; Edwin I. Hatch Nuclear Plant, Unit Nos. 1 and 2 – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is issuing a confirmatory order (Order) to revise the Edwin I. Hatch Nuclear Plant Unit Nos. 1 and 2 (Hatch) National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 805 License Amendment Request submittal date of October 4, 2016 to April 4, 2018. This new submittal date extends enforcement discretion until April 4, 2018, and supports the Southern Nuclear Operating Company, Inc. (the licensee) continued progress in activities related to the transition to NFPA 805.

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October 11, 2016 – Press Pieces

On October 11th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

October 11, 2016 – Courthouse News Service – US Owes Entergy $13M More for Breach on Fuel – A federal judge handed Entergy a 67 percent boost to its $20 million judgment against the Department of Energy for not accepting spent nuclear fuel from a Michigan plant. The department is supposed to remove nuclear waste for a fee and store it in Yucca Mountain, Nev., as part of the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982. Despite a 1998 contract to do so, however, the agency has not accepted any fuel waste from the Palisades nuclear power plant in Covert, Michigan. Entergy and Consumers Power Co., the company that sold Palisades to Entergy in 2007, meanwhile have the Department of Energy $279 million in fees over the life of the contract. The agency settled with Consumers after a federal judge found it liable for breach of contract, but Entergy filed its own suit to recover the costs it has spent related to the breach.

October 11, 2016 – The Nation – N-power plant was hit by cyber attack: IAEA chief – A nuclear power plant became the target of a disruptive cyber attack two to three years ago, and there is a serious threat of militant attacks on such plants, the head of the United Nations nuclear watchdog said on Monday. International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director Yukiya Amano also cited a case in which an individual tried to smuggle a small amount of highly enriched uranium about four years ago that could have been used to build a so-called “dirty bomb”. “This is not an imaginary risk,” Amano told Reuters and a German newspaper during a visit to Germany that included a meeting with Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

October 11, 2016 – Santa Fe New Mexican – LANL makes progress on Area G cleanup, but doubts remain – For more than 70 years, Los Alamos National Laboratory dug thousands of deep and shallow graves across mesas and filled them with the radioactive waste, chemicals and solvents used to make nuclear weapons. Workers disposed of the waste in these unlined pits before the widespread contamination that would follow was fully understood or governed by environmental laws. Radioactive particles that live longer than some civilizations mixed freely with the red soil.

October 11, 2016 – CNBC – Could China build the world’s smallest nuclear power plant and send it to the South China Sea? – A top mainland research institute is developing the world’s smallest ­nuclear power plant, which could fit inside a shipping container and might be installed on an island in the disputed South China Sea within five years. Researchers are carrying out intensive work on the unit – dubbed the hedianbao, or “portable nuclear battery pack”. Although the small, lead-cooled reactor could be placed ­inside a shipping container ­measuring about 6.1 metres long and 2.6 metres high, it would be able to generate 10 megawatts of heat, which, if converted into ­electricity, would be enough to power some 50,000 households.

October 11, 2016 – PhysOrg – Highly sensitive X-ray scattering shows why an exotic material is sometimes a metal, sometimes an insulator – Some materials hold surprising – and possibly useful – properties: neodymium nickel oxide is either a metal or an insulator, depending on its temperature. This characteristic makes the material a potential candidate for transistors in modern electronic devices. To understand how neodymium nickel oxide makes the transition from metal to insulator, researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI and the University of Geneva UNIGE have precisely probed the distribution of electrons in the material. By means of a sophisticated development of X-ray scattering, they were able to show that electrons in the vicinity of the material’s oxygen atoms are rearranging. The researchers have now published their study in the journal Nature Communications.

October 11, 2016 – PRNewswire – Explosive Novel Of Espionage Based On Shocking True Story – Author Ruth Anderson drew heavily from real life experience in creating her debut novel, Whistle Blower and Double Agents, a shocking spy thriller penned by a writer who worked intimately for the U.S. Government during a crisis long forgotten. Centered on what Anderson calls “a cover-up of epic proportions,” Whistle Blower and Double Agents is an explosive international thriller inspired by actual events. But what makes Whistle Blower and Double Agents positively combustible is the story behind the story: Anderson didn’t have to look far for a plot: she was working for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission in the 1970s when 200 pounds of uranium was declared missing or unaccountable at a U.S. nuclear power plant in Pennsylvania. Resplendent with intrigue, action, romance, and drama, Whistle Blower and Double Agents teems with authenticity. When asked why she wrote the novel, Anderson stated: “The novel is inspired by actual incidents around the 200 pounds of uranium missing, or unaccountable, from a US nuclear power plant. The question of responsibility pointed in many directions–the man who operated the nuclear power plant in Pennsylvania, the CIA, and even the President. I’m often asked why I believe there was a cover-up. I interviewed the whistleblower at my house and was haunted by the stories for years. You see, the ‘whistleblower’ found out exactly what happened to the uranium, who was involved—and who received the ‘missing’ uranium. Ultimately, I felt that this was a story that needed to be told.”

October 11, 2016 – Haaretz – 1939: Einstein Makes His Biggest Mistake – On October 11, 1939, Franklin D. Roosevelt received a letter warning him of the possibility that Nazi Germany might develop a nuclear bomb. The letter, signed by Albert Einstein, urged the U.S. president to take action. The result was the “Manhattan Project”, America’s own secret wartime drive that did, in fact, develop the first atom bomb. It was a month after Germany had invaded Poland, triggering World War II. Einstein had signed the letter but it was actually the initiative of a Jewish Hungarian physicist, Leo Szilard, who, like Einstein, had fled the Nazis to America. It was Szilard, a former student of Einstein’s, who is credited with first conceiving of nuclear chain reactions, in 1933. Fearing Germany could obtain Congo’s uranium reserves and utilize his and other discoveries to make a nuclear bomb, Szilard and fellow Hungarian physicist Eugene Wigner felt they had to warn the world. Szilard then thought of his former teacher, who was renowned enough to be taken seriously. (Though Sziland and Einstein had also collaborated in the 1920s on a new design for a refrigerator, which failed miserably.)

October 11, 2016 – STAT – What radiation-resistant space fungus can do for drug discovery – On Aug. 26, the Dragon space capsule dropped into the Pacific Ocean somewhere off the coast of Baja California, Mexico. Onboard were payloads containing fungi that had now grown in two of the most extreme conditions known to man: outer space and the Chernobyl Atomic Energy Station. These fungi are radiation resistant. Thirty years ago, they survived when a routine test led to an explosion that blasted radioactive material throughout northern Ukraine. By sending these fungi to the International Space Station, Kasthuri Venkateswaran, a research scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab, and Clay Wang, a professor at the USC School of Pharmacy, have tried to push them to adapt again.

October 11, 2016 – Prostate Cancer News Today – PET, MRI Combination Helps Map Prostate Cancer Relapses – Combining two imaging techniques has allowed researchers to study the patterns of prostate cancer recurrence following radical prostatectomy (removal of the prostate). Titled “Contemporary Mapping Of Post-Prostatectomy Prostate Cancer Relapse With C-11 Choline PET And Multiparametric MRI,” the research report was published in the Journal of Urology by Ilya Sobol and colleagues from the Mayo Clinic, in Rochester, Minnesota. “This study has important implications for men who have a rising prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test, also known as biochemical recurrence, after radical prostatectomy for prostate cancer,” Dr. Jeffrey Karnes, from Mayo Clinic, said in a news release. “In men with biochemical recurrence, determining where the disease has recurred is quite challenging, especially when the PSA level is low.”

October 11, 2016 – Slash Gear – Mars astronauts risk brain damage says new study – We know that the magnetosphere of the Earth protects us all from all sorts of damaging radiation that comes from the sun and other celestial bodies in space. In fact we have known for years that astronauts on missions to Mars would face much higher risks for cancer. A new study reports that the astronauts on future Mars missions may also face brain damage in addition to increased risk of cancer. The study used rodents and exposed the rodents to charged particles and then analyzed the results of the experiments. The scientists found that the rodents in the experiments had brain damage, neural inflammation,and impaired memory among other issues. “This is not positive news for astronauts deployed on a two-to-three-year round trip to Mars,” Charles Limoli, a professor of radiation oncology at the University of California, Irvine, School of Medicine, said in a statement.

October 11, 2016 – NJ.com – Nuclear emergency sirens to sound in South Jersey – Emergency sirens in the 10-mile radius around the Artificial Island nuclear generating complex will be tested Tuesday morning. The test will take place at approximately 10:20 a.m. and the sirens will sound for three minutes. The sirens are part of the alert system that would inform those who live near the Artificial Island complex of an emergency — especially the release of a large amount of radiation at one of the nuclear plants.

October 11, 2016 – TheLocal.ch – Swiss ‘need more time’ to close nuclear plants – The popular initiative ‘For an orderly withdrawal from the nuclear energy programme’, backed by the Green Party, will be put to the public vote in a referendum on November 27th. If passed, three of Switzerland’s nuclear power reactors – Mühleberg and Beznau 1 and 2 – will be closed as soon as 2017, with the remaining two being decommissioned in 2024 and 2029. Supporters say Switzerland’s ageing reactors – Beznau 1 is the oldest in the world, in service since 1969 – pose a threat to the country and the older they get the more risk there is of a major nuclear accident.

October 11, 2016 – Korea Herald – Nuclear-powered submarine can help S. Korea: navy chief – The chief of South Korea’s Navy said Tuesday acquiring nuclear-powered submarines can help the country better counter growing threats from North Korea. In a parliamentary audit, Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Um Hyun-seong said that having such assets in the fleet will be “helpful in multiple aspects.” He, however, made it clear that no decision has yet been made on the matter. His remarks came in response to a question by Rep. Kim Hack-yong from the ruling Saenuri Party about the argument for the government to build nuclear submarines to trail and keep close tabs on North Korean ballistic missile subs that can pose serious challenges to national security down the line.

October 11, 2016 – pv Magazine – Nuclear fallout: Vattenfall sues Germany – Swedish energy group Vattenfall is suing the German government for 4.7 million euros in compensation in connection with the country’s phase-out of nuclear energy. The International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) began hearings on Monday in the €4.7 billion ($5.21 billion) lawsuit by Swedish utility giant Vattenfall against the German government for its 2011 decision to accelerate the phase-out of nuclear energy. Vattenfall is demanding compensation from the German government for lost earnings and investments made when nuclear power still appeared to have a future in Germany.

October 11, 2016 – Cape Talk – Energy department: Eskom will fund nuclear build on its own – Minister of Energy Tina Joemat-Pettersson has told the Portfolio Committee on Energy that Eskom will be recommended to become the entity in charge of procuring the nuclear programme. EWN reporter Gaye Davis says the minister said Eskom fund the nuclear build programme off its own balance sheet because the Treasury has no money. Members of Parliament from the opposition parties and chairperson of the Committee Fikile Majola raised concerns about transparency if Eskom takes responsibility. “He [Majola] says what does this mean for Parliamentary oversight, and what does it mean for the role of this Committee in putting in place the role of check and balances that are needed to ensure that this process is fair, and just and transparent one.”

October 11, 2016 – The Japan News – Cyber-attacks ‘targeted nuclear lab’ – A research center at the University of Toyama famous for its work on tritium (see below), a substance used to fuel nuclear fusion reactors, is feared to have been targeted by cyber-attacks over a period of about six months, according to an internal investigation by the university and other sources. The possibility of cyber-attacks was discovered in June of this year. Information is feared to have been stolen from the computer terminal of a researcher at the university’s Hydrogen Isotope Research Center. An expert on cybersecurity said: “Pieces of information important to national security were among the data targeted. It is urgent to improve the level of security at universities that store information assets.”

October 11, 2016 – The Guardian – Wind direction is critical in devising response to nuclear disaster – The way the wind is blowing at the time of a nuclear disaster is crucial to the action the authorities need to take to protect the civilian population. Among the first priorities is issuing iodine tablets to protect people’s thyroid from absorbing the radioactive particles from the fallout that may later cause cancer. But in October 1957, when a plume of radioactivity spread out from the burning pile at Windscale in Cumbria, the reaction of the authorities was not to warn the public but to reassure them. Everything was under control. Children continued to pick potatoes in the fields surrounding the plant while the radioactivity showered down on them. While this disaster was not quite on the scale of Chernobyl or Fukushima, there was a radioactive plume that spread for hundreds of miles on a westerly wind across the north of England and deep into Europe. However, on the first day of the disaster, the wind was said to be blowing from the east, across the Irish Sea and dusting Ireland in radioactive fallout.

October 11, 2016 – Business Insider – Militant interest in attacking nuclear sites stirs concern in Europe – Metre-thick concrete walls and 1950s-style analog control rooms help protect nuclear plants from bomb attacks and computer hackers, but Islamist militants are turning their attention to the atomic industry’s weak spots, security experts say. Concerns about nuclear terrorism rose after Belgian media reported that suicide bombers who killed 32 people in Brussels on March 22 originally looked into attacking a nuclear installation before police raids that netted a number of suspected associates forced them to switch targets. Security experts say that blowing up a nuclear reactor is beyond the skills of militant groups, but that the nuclear industry has some vulnerabilities that could be exploited.

October 11, 2016 – Tuoitrenews.vn – Vietnam seeks crisis response to Chinese border nuclear plants – As China operates the first units of three nuclear power plants located as close as 50 kilometers from Vietnamese borders, Hanoi is seeking measures to detect and respond to possible future crises related to the facilities. China currently has three nuclear power plants built near Vietnamese territory, Fangchenggang Nuclear Power Plant in Guangxi, Changjiang Nuclear Power Plant in Hainan Province, and Yangjiang Nuclear Power Plant in Guangdong Province. Fangchenggang is located only 50 kilometers from the northern Vietnamese province of Quang Ninh, while Changjiang lies 100 kilometers off Vietnam’s Bach Long Vi Island in the Gulf of Tokin. The farthest among the three, Yangjiang, is 200 kilometers from Vietnamese borders.

October 11, 2016 – Red Flag – South Australia to become global nuclear waste capital – Sixty years ago, Maralinga went up in a mushroom cloud. The British government had been given permission to test atomic weaponry in South Australia. That is to say, they had been given permission by the right wing Menzies government. The local Maralinga Tjarutja people had no say in it at all. Many of them were not even forewarned of the first blast. Thunderous black clouds condemned them to radiation exposure, illness and death, the survivors being driven from their homeland during the long years of British testing and fallout. South Australia has a dark history with the nuclear industry. Maralinga remains contaminated, despite cheap clean-up efforts. Uranium tailings have leaked from BHP’s Olympic Dam mine at Roxby Downs. Fukushima’s reactors held South Australian uranium when catastrophe struck in 2011.

October 11, 2016 – Daily News & Analysis – Delhi N-leak: Clamour for safety regulator grows – On Sunday, it was suspected that a radioactive leak had taken place, however, later the government issued a statement denying such reports and said the emission was ‘within permissible’ limits’. A suspected radioactive leak reported on Sunday—in the cargo area of Delhi’s international airport Terminal 3, from a shipment—has once again lent voice to the clamour to adopt legislation to put in place a nuclear safety regulator. A bill in this regard was introduced in the Lok Sabha in 2011, but has since lapsed with its dissolution. Even though an inter-Ministerial group last year gave its nod to introduce the Nuclear Safety Regulatory Authority (NSRA) Bill in order to set up a Nuclear Safety Regulatory Authority to replace the existing Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (AERB); the bill seems to have gone into hibernation. This is despite the government, during the last two parliament sessions, hurriedly adopting amendments to other bills relating to the commercial use of nuclear energy.

October 11, 2016 – Eurasia Review – Russia Withdraws From US Nuclear Cooperation – The Russian government has “suspended” a 2013 agreement with the USA on nuclear energy research and development and “terminated” another, signed in 2010, on cooperation in the conversion of Russian research reactors to low-enriched uranium fuel. The decisions were issued in separate documents signed by Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and published on the government’s website on 5 October. The decisions follow Russian President Vladimir Putin’s order earlier this week to suspend a 2000 agreement with the USA on the disposal of plutonium from their respective nuclear weapons programs.

October 11, 2016 – AA.com – Nuclear power: its future debated at World Energy Cong. – Nuclear power investments and regulations along with the necessity in taking safety precautions in this industry were argued by a prominent group of speakers at the 23rd World Energy Congress (WEC) in Istanbul on Monday. Speaking at WEC, of which Anadolu Agency is the global communication partner for 2016, Wang Binghua, chairman at State Power Investment Corporation (SPIC) in China, said that the decision process in choosing the best technology, appropriate design and correct location were paramount. “Nuclear power has no frontiers. Security of a nuclear plant has no frontiers either. Any country which intends to develop nuclear energy needs to manage security problems and must consider the others [countries],” he said.

October 11, 2016 – Daily Caller – New ‘Supermolecule’ Could Solve Nuclear Waste Problem – A new “supermolecule” could allow nuclear waste to easily be stored and disposed of, according to a new study published by scientists from Indiana University. Nuclear waste could be transformed using the “supermolecule” into easily held solids through a process called vitrification. The molecule contains two negatively charged ions, which was originally regarded as impossible since it defied a nearly 250-year-old chemical law, and has only recently come under new scrutiny. The “supermolecule” could also be used to neutralize other environmentally hazardous waste. “An anion-anion dimerization of bisulfate goes against simple expectations of Coulomb’s law,” Dr. Amar Flood, an Indiana University chemistry professor who was the study’s senior author, said in a press statement. “But the structural evidence we present in this paper shows two hydroxy anions can in fact be chemically bonded. We believe the long-range repulsions between these anions are offset by short-range attractions.”

October 11, 2016 – Helena Independent Record – A nuclear reactor in Colstrip would be a win for Montana – It has become tiresome to hear people like Bob Lake, Eric Moore and Greg Gianforte talk about saving Colstrip 1 and 2 from the environmentalists and Steve Bullock. Apparently they do not realize, or want to admit, that coal is a declining industry because it is now universally recognized as a dirty fuel. Here is what China is doing to transition away from coal “due to air pollution from coal-fired plants” according to the World Nuclear Association: Mainland China has 35 nuclear power reactors in operation, 20 under construction, and more about to start construction. Additional reactors are planned, including some of the world’s most advanced, to give a doubling of nuclear capacity to at least 58 GWe by 2020-21, then up to 150 GWe by 2030, and much more by 2050.

October 11, 2016 – Energy Collective – U.S. Navy Sets Plans to Upgrade Idaho Spent Fuel Facility – The Associated Press reported October 3 that the Navy and U.S. Department of Energy want to build a $1.6 billion facility at a nuclear site in eastern Idaho that would handle fuel waste from the nation’s fleet of nuclear-powered warships through at least 2060. According to the wire service, the new facility would be built at the Energy Department’s 890-square-mile Idaho National Laboratory, the nation’s primary lab for commercial nuclear energy research. The Navy’s plan is sure to set off a significant response from anti-nuclear groups and two ex-governors who have stridently opposed any new spent nuclear fuel, from any source, being brought to the state.

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October 10, 2016 – Holiday. No entries.

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October 10, 2016 – Press Pieces

On October 10th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

October 10, 2016 – VietNamNet Bridge – Devices monitoring radioactive sources in place by Oct 30 – Vuong Huu Tan, head of Viet Nam Agency for Radiation and Nuclear Safety, said the monitoring devices would help authorised agencies keep a close watch on radioactive sources and raise alerts if they are moved, or in case of emergencies. At a press conference held yesterday by the ministry of science and technology, Tan also said the installation started on October 1. Each monitoring device, made by the Ha Noi University of Science and Technology, costs around VND30 million (US$1,340). That is just half the price of such devices built by other countries. The decision to install monitoring devices was taken after several radioactive sources were reported missing earlier this year.

October 10, 2016 – Kalamunda Reporter – Testing time for Kalamunda veteran involved in nuclear test – KALAMUNDA resident Robin Lyons is eagerly awaiting the outcome of a meeting in Canberra between former national servicemen and the Department of Veterans Affairs for men who served in the Monte Bello Islands, north of Onslow. Mr Lyons was one of a number of seamen in the Navy at HMAS Leeuwin who were asked as part of their national service in the 1950s to travel on the HMAS Fremantle and HMAS Junee to the British test site, 70km off the WA coast, after the first atomic bomb test. “The HMS Plimb was anchored off the islands and a bomb located with the ship had vaporised it,” he said. “We were to anchor quite near this site. “When we were not involved with the stores run (replenishing supplies), we were able to volunteer to carry out work details on the island and some went ashore for recreation. “But at no time were we advised on how ‘hot’ the island was and we certainly were not given any preventative clothing.”

October 10, 2016 – Nature World News – Aliens Could Be Feeding on Cosmic Rays for Survival, Scientists Found – The rod-shaped bacterium called Desulforudis audaxviator was found 2.8 kilometers beneath a gold mine in South Africa. A scientist has found that the microbe survives on byproducts of radioactive uranium, thorium, and potassium in the depths of the mine since it doesn’t have access to light, oxygen, and carbon. The discovery led to the theory that alien life might be living in uninhabitable environments in the universe, feeding on cosmic radiation to survive. “It really grabbed my attention because it’s completely powered by radioactive substances,” Dimitra Atri, an astrobiologist and computational physicist from the Blue Marble Space Institute of Science in Seattle, Washington and author of the study, said in a report by Science.com.

October 10, 2016 – Renal and Urology News – ALP Decline in Radium-223 Recipients Predicts Better Outcomes – Declines in alkaline phosphatase (ALP) may predict better outcomes in patients receiving treatment with radium-223 for metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC), according to study findings presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology 2016 congress in Copenhagen. As part of a prospective single-arm phase 3b study, investigators led by Daniel Heinrich, MD, of Akershus University Hospital in Lorenskog, Norway, studied 696 mCRPC patients who received at least 1 radium-223 cycle in an international early access program. At week 12, 398 patients (57%) had a confirmed decline in ALP from baseline and 298 (43%) did not.

October 10, 2016 – Parent Herald – Is there radon in your child’s school? What parents need to know – Back-to-school is in full swing. For parents, it means equipping children with the lessons and tools they need to stay safe. But there is one hidden danger that many parents are unaware of- radon, a colorless, odorless and radioactive gas. Recently, Portland Public Schools have been attracting national media with a report that officials found alarmingly high radon levels in more than 100 of its classrooms. This case is unfortunately too common. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), more than 70,000 schoolrooms in use today have high short-term radon levels. Despite these alarming facts, only about 20 percent of schools nationwide have done some form of testing for the deadly gas. So what exactly is radon, and how can parents protect their children against it?

October 10, 2016 – Ecns.cn – China to launch world’s first X-ray pulsar navigation satellite – The China Academy of Space Technology has announced plans to launch the world’s first X-ray pulsar navigation satellite (XPNAV-1) in November, Xinhua reported. The move brings autonomous spacecraft navigation and a more precise deep-space GPS one step closer to reality. X-ray pulsar navigation is an innovative navigation technique wherein periodic X-ray signals emitted from pulsars are used to determine the location of a spacecraft in deep space. Current ground-based navigation methods are limited by the time delay between spacecraft and the Earth. However, for certain type of pulsars, called “millisecond pulsars,” pulses of radiation occur with the regularity and precision of an atomic clock. As a result, in some scenarios, the pulsar X-ray can take less time to estimate a location. This leads to more precise measurements of a spacecraft’s location. However, since X-rays from pulsars are absorbed by the atmosphere, scientists must launch satellites to continue research of the new technology.

October 10, 2016 – PhysOrg – How deadly would a nearby gamma ray burst be? – Despite the obvious doom and gloom associated with mass extinctions, they have a tendency to capture our imagination. After all, the sudden demise of the dinosaurs, presumably due to an asteroid strike, is quite an enthralling story. But not all mass extinctions are quite as dramatic and not all have an easily identified culprit. The Ordovician extinction—one of the “big five” in Earth’s history—occurred around 450 million years ago when the population of marine species plummeted. Evidence suggests that this occurred during an ice age and a gamma ray burst is one of several possible mechanisms that may have triggered this extinction event. Gamma ray bursts (GRBs) are the brightest electromagnetic blasts known to occur in the Universe, and can originate from the collapse of the most massive types of stars or from the collision of two neutron stars. Supernovae are stellar explosions that also can send harmful radiation hurtling towards Earth.

October 10, 2016 – Astronauts heading to Mars risk developing dementia from cosmic rays – International Business Times – NASA astronauts who will travel to Mars may risk developing cognitive impairments and symptoms of dementia, due to cosmic radiation exposure. More immediately, the brain damages they sustained during deep space travel may also compromise critical decision making during their mission. NASA’s plan to send humans to Mars within the next two decades is arguably one of the most exciting goal for space exploration in the near future, but it will be a challenging one. The vast distances between Earth and the Red Planet and the dangers of such a long journey into space have been repeatedly highlighted, but less has been said about the adverse health effects of exposure to cosmic rays. In a study published in Scientific Reports, research has looked into the impact of such radiation on rodents, to learn more about the health risks astronauts may face on an extra-terrestrial adventure to Mars.

October 10, 2016 – Deutsche Welle – Hearing against Germany begins as investors seek damages for nuclear phase-out – An international arbitration court has begun a two-week hearing against the German government. A two-week hearing against the German state over its decision to phase out nuclear energy begins in front of an international arbitration court in the United States on Monday. The Swedish state-owned energy company, Vattenfall, is seeking around 5 billion euros in damages after the German parliament decided to shut down all nuclear plants by 2022 in the wake of the 2011 nuclear disaster in Fukushima, Japan.

October 10, 2016 – WZZM 13 – Did we really ‘almost lose Detroit’ in nuclear mishap 50 years ago? – As Michigan and the nation’s energy profiles are poised to change dramatically in the coming decade, the 50th anniversary last week of the Fermi 1 nuclear plant mishap in Monroe County — the genesis for the book and song “We Almost Lost Detroit” — is a stark reminder that decisions on how to meet the economy’s energy needs are nearly always controversial and may bring unanticipated consequences. Fermi 1 was the worst nuclear accident at a U.S. commercial power plant in the years before Three Mile Island jolted the nation. There were no injuries or hazardous radiation released, but the incident provided an early argument against nuclear power as too dangerous, including speculation at the time that a crushed beer can in the works had caused the partial meltdown. The Fermi accident had many of the trappings of a Hollywood drama, including shadowy informants and a purported cover-up. Even then-Vice President Hubert Humphrey was in town at the time of the partial meltdown to dedicate the new Monroe County Public Library.

October 10, 2016 – i24News – Israel’s Dimona nuclear reactor to be renamed after late former President Peres – The Dimona nuclear reactor in southern Israel will be renamed in honor of the late former president Shimon Peres, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced Sunday, in recognition of his contribution to Israel’s nuclear knowledge. “Shimon Peres worked greatly to establish this important enterprise, an enterprise which is important to the security of Israel for generations,” Netanyahu said, announcing the renaming of the Nuclear Research Center-Negev after Peres. “I think that it would be right and proper to rename the center after him,” Netanyahu said.

October 10, 2016 – airforcetechnology.com – USAF and NNSA conduct flight tests of mock nuclear weapons – The US Air Force (USAF) Global Strike Command and National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) have successfully conducted flight tests of mock nuclear weapons. The tests saw two separate B-2A Spirit stealth bombers from the 509th Bomber Wing drop joint test assemblies (JTA) of the B61-7 and B61-11. These trials were conducted to validate the performance of the JTAs in operationally representative conditions. NNSA military application principal assistant deputy administrator brigadier general Michael Lutton said: “The B61 is a critical element of the US nuclear triad and the extended deterrent. “The recent surveillance flight tests demonstrate NNSA’s commitment to ensure all weapon systems are safe, secure, and effective.” JTAs are mock weapons that contain no nuclear materials and are not capable of nuclear yield.

October 10, 2016 – Reuters – Belgian nuclear power reactor outages – Belgium has seven nuclear power reactors with a combined capacity of almost 6 gigawatts, which are operated by Electrabel, part of France’s Engie (formerly known as GDF Suez). Two of those reactors, Doel 1 and Doel 2, were scheduled to shut down at the end of this year but their lifespan has been extended to 2025. Nuclear power plants regularly stop production for maintenance or to refuel. They cut capacity gradually and it can take a few hours until output reaches zero. Unplanned outages can also occur when the operator takes the reactor offline or it shuts itself down.

October 10, 2016 – aa.com.tr – Nuclear power: its future debated at World Energy Cong. – Nuclear power investments and regulations along with the necessity in taking safety precautions in this industry were argued by a prominent group of speakers at the 23rd World Energy Congress (WEC) in Istanbul on Monday. Speaking at WEC, of which Anadolu Agency is the global communication partner for 2016, Wang Binghua, chairman at State Power Investment Corporation (SPIC) in China, said that the decision process in choosing the best technology, appropriate design and correct location were paramount. “Nuclear power has no frontiers. Security of a nuclear plant has no frontiers either. Any country which intends to develop nuclear energy needs to manage security problems and must consider the others [countries],” he said.

October 10, 2016 – Forbes – Trump Correctly States U.S. “Nuclear Program Has Fallen Behind” Russia’s – After the first hour of the second Trump-Clinton debate, I was beginning to worry that I wouldn’t be able to fulfill my assignment to write about the way that the candidates spoke about my coverage area. There was no mention of energy, clean energy, nuclear energy or climate change. Finally, at 1:02:40 on the YouTube video titled FULL: Donald Trump vs Hillary Clinton – Second Presidential Debate – Washington University 10/9/2016, Donald Trump made the following statement. “ …our nuclear program has fallen behind and they’ve gone wild with their program. Not good. Our government should not have allowed that to happen. Russia is new in terms of nuclear. We are old, we’re tired we’re exhausted in terms of nuclear. A very bad thing.

October 10, 2016 – Daily Times – Radiation leak briefly halts operations at Delhi airport – A suspected radioactive leak occurred on Sunday at Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport from cancer medicines that were being transferred by an Air France Aircraft. However, officials confirmed that the leas was minor and within permissible limits and there had been no injury to anyone. Earlier, teams of the Indian National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) rushed to the spot after police were informed. Additionally, seven fire tenders and a HazMat (hazardous material) van were pressed into service, Indian media reported. The cargo area at the airport was cordoned off.

October 10, 2016 – Pickle – Avocados and bananas are radioactive — but it’s not anything to worry about – You might read new research measuring radiation emissions from everyday foods and panic that eating them will turn you into the Hulk. The study identified both avocados and bananas as radioactive — but you shouldn’t turf them out of your fruit bowl just yet. For starters, avos are way too expensive to just throw away. And more importantly, the point of the North Carolina State University study wasn’t to scare people — but rather to demonstrate that a teeny bit of radiation is nothing to worry about. “If you’re surprised that your fruit is emitting gamma radiation, don’t panic,” said Robert Hayes, an associate professor of nuclear engineering at North Carolina State University. “We did this study because understanding how much radiation comes off of common household items helps place radiation readings in context – it puts things in perspective.”

October 10, 2016 – VN Express – Vietnam wary as China commissions nuclear power plants near border – With the closest one less than 500 kilometers from Hanoi, experts urge Vietnam to keep an eye on what’s going on the other side. The Vietnam Atomic Energy Institute is calling for the development of a radioactivity surveillance system in northern Vietnam after China started operation at three new nuclear power plants close to the border. Nguyen Hao Quang, the vice director of the institute under the Ministry of Industry and Trade, said at a meeting last week that his organization has struggled to find funding for the system even though the government gave a nod to the project in 2010. The Chinese plants demand “emergency” actions, he said. “With the very strong nuclear activity in China across the border, we suggest that checkpoints be set up in the area to promptly detect any impacts,” Quang said.

October 10, 2016 – Daily Caller – Gov’t Red Tape Is Strangling American Nuclear Power – Government red tape is preventing the construction of new nuclear reactors and causing existing ones to shut down. Heavy government regulations combined with polices intended to support wind and solar power make it incredibly difficult to profitably operate a nuclear power plant, according to a study published Thursday by R Street Institute. Eventually, these regulations will cause nuclear reactors to shut down, which would increase carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. “Nuclear energy has been a historically low-cost, reliable source of energy,” Catrina Rorke, the study’s author, told The Daily Caller News Foundation. “What we’re seeing now are closures prompted by market signals, but layered over an industry that is substantially more burdened by regulatory requirements than in decades past.”

October 10, 2016 – Vermont Business Magazine – Vermont Yankee kicks off $143 million project for fuel storage – Vermont Yankee administrators waited two years for the state’s permission to build a new storage facility for nuclear waste at the defunct Vernon plant. When they finally received that permit in late June, they didn’t waste any time getting started. Entergy administrators last week said the construction of a spent fuel storage facility is well under way, with a few dozen contracted workers having recently installed a massive generator that will provide emergency power to the complex. Construction will continue into 2017. But officials say getting the generator in place was a “major milestone” as crews begin a $143 million effort to transfer all of the plant’s radioactive spent fuel into sealed casks.

October 10, 2016 – Philadelphia Inquirer – Judge rules in favor of Penn vs. brain-cancer victim; family plans appeal – A federal judge has found in favor of the University of Pennsylvania in a lawsuit brought by the estate of Jeffrey H. Ware, a neuroscientist who died of a rare brain cancer after exposure to radiation during his research at Penn. But his family’s attorneys say the case never belonged in federal court, arguing that Penn improperly invoked a law that governs nuclear power plants, not research laboratories, and has filed a notice of appeal. The family of Jeffrey Ware contends his brain cancer was caused by radiation exposure in his research job at the University of Pennsylvania. The lawsuit also contends that Ware was enrolled in a clinical trial at Penn without his informed consent, subjecting him to painful side effects well after there was any hope of remission. Ware, who studied the effects of radiation on animals to guide efforts to prevent cancer in astronauts, died of gliosarcoma in October 2011 at age 47. He lived in Haddonfield with his wife, Barbara Boyer, an Inquirer reporter, and their two daughters.

October 10, 2016 – Athens News Courier – BROWNS FERRY NUKE PLANT: Power increase request still under consideration – A request by the Tennessee Valley Authority to increase power being generated by three reactors at Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant is still under consideration, an official said Tuesday. TVA submitted a license amendment request to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission in September 2015. The request seeks an increase of approximately 20 percent above the original licensed thermal power level and an increase of about 14.3 percent above the current power level. NRC Spokesman Scott Burnell said opposing groups have sought a hearing to voice opposition to the proposal and that NRC legal staff and TVA are in the process of filing a response. He explained the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board is just now beginning the process of examining all the legal points raised by all the parties. He said it would be “some time” before the board decides whether requirements for a hearing have been met.

October 10, 2016 – Reuters – FPL says Saint Lucie 2 Florida reactor shut ahead of Matthew – Florida Power and Light Co [NEEPWR.UL] said its 839-megawatt Unit 2 at the Saint Lucie nuclear power plant in Florida was shut Thursday morning as a precaution against Hurricane Matthew. The company did not specify when the unit would be back at full power. Meanwhile, the Turkey Point reactor was at 100 percent, according to the company. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has dispatched additional inspectors to the facilities and will activate its regional incident response center in Atlanta later on Thursday, the NRC said in a release on Thursday.

October 10, 2016 – Medhill Reports Chicago – Hiroshima exhibit documents the innocent victims of the atom bomb – Three colorful origami cranes made by school girl Sadako Sasaki, a survivor of the U.S. strike on Hiroshima, sit on display for the Hiroshima-Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Exhibition in Chicago. She folded nearly 1,000 cranes as a traditional prayer for healing before she died of leukemia 10 years after the bomb strike. She was 12 years old. Undergarments worn by 2-year-old Hiroo Taoda on the day of the 1945 bombing offer a stirring reminder of the thousands of innocent victims. Taoda was exposed to the bomb blast in front of Hiroshima Station and he died the same night.

“It is precisely those who had little to do with the war that lost their lives in the blink of an eye because of the atomic bomb,” said Kenji Shiga, director of the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, at the opening of the exhibit here on October 1. He fervently hopes people who live in countries that currently possess nuclear bombs can be aware of this, he said.

October 10, 2016 – Fort Bliss Bugle – White Sands Missile Range holds Trinity Site open house – Judging by the license plates on vehicles at the Trinity Site open house at White Sands Missile Range Saturday, people came from all over the United States to see where the world’s first nuclear bomb explosion took place July 16, 1945. Barry and Dianne Lennox of New Zealand, however, might have traveled the farthest – more than 7,000 miles – and their visit was no spur of the moment side trip.

October 10, 2016 – Albuquerque Journal – Second rock fall discovered at WIPP – For the second time in a week, a section of collapsed roof was discovered in the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant underground. Both the first rock fall, discovered last Tuesday, and the one discovered yesterday were found in prohibited areas — meaning no personnel were allowed to enter — in the south area of the mine. The most recent incident was near Panel 3, which has been closed since February 2007. The rock fall was found during a weekly routine inspection that involves making visual observations from outside the prohibited area to ensure worker safety.

October 10, 2016 – CBS Denver – Debate Over Public Trails On Former Nuclear Weapons Site – Despite opposition, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is finalizing its plans to open up the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge to the public. Multiple trailheads, crossings, and parking lots have been funded as well as more than five miles of trails encircling the Department of Energy Legacy Site. “We’re really concerned about the amount of plutonium that’s in the environment from the former weapons plant,” said Alesya Casse a Board Member of the Rocky Flats Downwinders. About 100 people filled a community room in the controversial Candelas neighborhood to hear the FWS plans for moving forward with the opening of the wildlife refuge.

October 10, 2016 – KSL.com – Lambing bighorns, radiation and rocky terrain part of mine closure project – Helicopters and pack horses navigating the steep cliff faces of the San Rafael Swell were part of an ambitious effort carried out by state mining authorities to close more than 170 Cold War-era uranium mines. The effort by the Utah Division of Oil, Gas and Mining earned it the nation’s highest achievement award for eliminating physical safety hazards, recognition given by the National Association of Abandoned Mine Land Programs. “This is an honor to be recognized for our hard work,” said program administrator Steve Fluke. “It is the goal of the program to protect the public from the hazards of old mines.” The agency partnered with the Bureau of Land Management and the Emery County Public Lands Council in its initiation of the project, which also faced obstacles from lambing bighorn sheep, constraints imposed by designated wilderness areas and challenges from radiation safety protocols.

October 10, 2016 – San Luis Obispo Tribune – Diablo Canyon closure proceedings begin in San Francisco – State proceedings for the application to close the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant started off with a bang Thursday — or more appropriately, a gripe. Judge Peter Allen, the administrative judge handling the California Public Utilities Commission proceedings, criticized PG&E for “getting a little ahead of itself here and attempting to get ahead of this commission” by holding an “all-party meeting” Tuesday to discuss the schedule and scope of the CPUC proceedings. Although PG&E may recommend ways to proceed, “this commission sets the schedule and the scope of this proceeding,” he said.

October 10, 2016 – NBC Bay Area – Firefighters Clean Up Small Radioactive Spill That Prompted Evacuations in Antioch – Crews have successfully contained and cleaned up a small radioactive material spill that forced the evacuation of several apartments next to a construction site in Antioch Thursday morning, according to Contra Costa County fire officials. At about 9 a.m. crews responded to a report that a piece of equipment used by surveyors was run over by a construction vehicle and spilled out a very small amount of radioactive material, Contra Costa County Fire Protection District Fire Marshal Robert Marshall said. “There is zero contamination on the site at this point” and no one was injured or exposed to the material, Marshall said.
The material — cesium and americium — are common in medical and industrial uses and are found in certain types of smoke alarms, Marshall said.

October 10, 2016 – KVEW TV – Trump drummed about Yucca Mountain during stops in Nevada – Donald Trump told reporters in Nevada Wednesday that he has not taken a stance on whether nuclear waste from sites like Hanford should be stored at a Yucca Mountain repository. Trump was asked whether he was familiar with the ongoing debate over Yucca Mountain and responded, “I do.” He declined to take a position for or against storing waste there. Trump said he was sensitive to concerns about safety and the impact on the Las Vegas tourism industry, but once again refused to take a firm position on Yucca Mountain. Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton told the Las Vegas Sun that Yucca Mountain should be off the table because of questions about its suitability as a site and existing opposition to the idea.

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October 6, 2016 – 81 FR 69446-69448 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Risk-Informed Changes to Loss-of-Coolant Accident Technical Requirements – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is discontinuing a rulemaking activity titled, “Risk-Informed Changes to Loss-Of-Coolant Accident Technical Requirements.” The purpose of this action is to inform members of the public of the discontinuation of this rulemaking and to provide a brief discussion of the NRC’s decision to discontinue it. This rulemaking activity will no longer be reported in the NRC’s portion of the Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions (the Unified Agenda).

October 6, 2016 – 81 FR 69554-69555 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Strata Energy, Inc.; Ross Uranium In-Situ Recovery Facility; Source and Byproduct Materials License – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has issued an updated Record of Decision (ROD) related to the license for Strata Energy, Inc. (Strata), Ross Uranium In-Situ Recovery (ISR) Facility in Crook County, Wyoming. Strata’s request for a source and byproduct materials license for the Ross ISR facility was contested through the NRC’s adjudicatory process. On June 29, 2016, the Commission denied a petition for review of the Atomic Safety and Licensing Board’s (ASLB) decision. The ROD has been updated to account for the ASLB’s decision and the Commission’s ruling.

October 6, 2016 – 81 FR 69553-69554 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Vogtle Electric Generating Plant, Units 3 and 4 – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) staff has determined that the inspections, tests, and analyses have been successfully completed, and that the specified acceptance criteria are met for multiple inspections, tests, analyses, and acceptance criteria (ITAAC) for the Vogtle Electric Generating Plant (VEGP), Units 3 and 4.

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October 6, 2016 – Press Pieces

On October 6th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

October 6, 2016 – Focus Taiwan News – Ban on food from Japan’s radiation-affected areas remains – The food and Drug Administration (FDA) reaffirmed Thursday that there is no timetable for any lifting of a ban on food imports from five Japanese prefectures that were affected by radiation fallout from a nuclear power plant meltdown following the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. “There is no timetable for any such opening,” FDA Director-General Chiang Yu-mei (姜郁美) told CNA. She declined to comment on reports that Taiwan and Japan have reached an initial consensus on Taiwan’s opening to food imports from the five prefectures. Taiwan banned food imports from Fukushima, Ibaraki, Tochigi, Gunma and Chiba prefectures in the wake of the meltdown of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant on March 11, 2011.

October 6, 2016 – Parent Herald – Aliens Survive On Galactic Cosmic Rays Like Bacteria In Radioactive Mines? – Recent studies have revealed that a bacterium named Desulforudis audaxviator can survive on Galactic Cosmic Rays (GCRs). GCRs are cosmic rays, which originate from sources outside the solar system and distributed throughout the Milky Way galaxy. Scientists predict GCRs can be the source of energy for Aliens. According to new research in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface, the bacteria miles below the earth in abandoned mine shafts off the radioactive rocks. Author Dimitra Atri, research scientist said D. audaxviator is the only known organism to live as a result of radiolysis. In this a substance decomposes as a result of radiation. The bacteria lives under such extreme conditions is the only of its kind and called an “extremophile” – eats radioactive rocks extracting carbon and other essential chemicals from them.

October 4, 2016 – The Japan News – Is medical radiation exposure being curbed? – In June last year, standards for exposure to medical radiation — dubbed diagnostic reference levels, or DRLs — were established. The DRLs serve as yardsticks to ensure patients are not exposed to unnecessarily high doses of radiation during radiological exams at hospitals. To find out whether levels of medical exposure have decreased over the last year, I spoke with Reiko Kanda, an expert at the National Institutes for Quantum and Radiological Science and Technology, which is leading efforts in that area.

October 6, 2016 – University of Copenhagen News – Robert Feidenhans’l resigns as head of the Niels Bohr Institute – Robert Feidenhans’l, professor and head of the Niels Bohr Institute at the University of Copenhagen has been appointed as the Chairman of the Management Board of the large European research facility XFEL in Hamburg. Robert Feidenhans’l will take up the new position on 1 January 2017 and will step down from his position as head of the Niels Bohr Institute at the end of the year. The European X-ray Free Electron Laser, European XFEL, is a research facility that produces extremely intense X-rays that are a billion times stronger than the best traditional X-ray sources. X-ray radiation is a super tool that opens up entirely new opportunities for research in materials and proteins and to be able to carry out advanced experiments with the structure and dynamic of individual particles.

October 6, 2016 – Ecologist – Japan abandons Monju fast reactor: the slow death of a nuclear dream – ‘Fast breeder’ reactors are promoted by nuclear enthusiasts as the clean, green energy technology of the future, writes Jim Green. But all the evidence tells us they are a catastrophic failure: complex, expensive, unreliable and accident-prone. Is Japan’s decision to abandon its Monju reactor the latest nail in the coffin of a dead technology? Or the final stake through its rotten heart? Monju reached criticality in 1994 but was shut down in December 1995 after a sodium coolant leak and fire. The reactor didn’t restart until May 2010, and it was shut down again three months later. Decommissioning Monju will cost an estimated $3 billion. 1956 US Navy Admiral Hyman Rickover summarized his experience of these reactors by saying they are ‘expensive to build, complex to operate, susceptible to prolonged shutdown as a result of even minor malfunctions, and difficult and time-consuming to repair.’ Sixty years later, this summary remains apt.

October 6, 2016 – Right Side News – Obama Aids Iranian Nuclear Terror – Senator Obama opposed naming Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps a terror group even while it was closely involved in organizing attacks against American soldiers in Iraq. Then, as part of his dirty deal with Iran, he secretly sent a fortune in foreign cash on airplanes linked to the IRGC. And, as another part of the secret ransom deal with Iran, he lifted UN sanctions on Bank Sepah. The United States has gone after plenty of banks for aiding terror finance, but Bank Sepah is somewhat unique in that it is a financial institution actually owned and operated by Islamic terrorists. Bank Sepah is an IRGC bank. The IRGC, despite Obama’s denials, is an Islamic terror group with American blood on its hands. It is to Shiite Islam what ISIS is to Sunni Islam. And even the Democrats know it.

October 6, 2016 – The Japan News – Russia suspends N-agreement with U.S. – Russia further curtailed its cooperation with the United States in nuclear energy on Wednesday, suspending a research agreement and terminating one on uranium conversion, two days after the Kremlin shelved a plutonium pact with Washington. The Russian government said that as countermeasures to the U.S. sanctions imposed on Russia over Ukraine, it was putting aside a nuclear and energy-related research pact with the United States. It also said it was terminating for the same reasons an agreement between its nuclear corporation Rosatom and the U.S. Energy Department on feasibility studies into conversion of Russian research reactors to low-enriched uranium.

October 6, 2016 – Broadway World – Limelight Performing Arts Presents D.W. Gregory’s RADIUM GIRLS – In 1926, radium was a miracle cure, Madame Curie an international celebrity, and luminous watches the latest rage-until the girls who painted them began to fall ill with a mysterious disease. Inspired by historical events, Radium Girls traces the efforts of Grace Fryer, a dial painter, as she fights for her day in court. Her chief adversary is her former employer, Arthur Roeder, an idealistic man who cannot bring himself to believe that the same element that shrinks tumors could have anything to do with the terrifying rash of illnesses among his employees. As the case goes on, however, Grace finds herself battling not just with the U.S. Radium Corporation, but with her own family and friends, who fear that her campaign for justice will backfire.

October 6, 2016 – Construction Index – Milestone reached in construction of Chernobyl enclosure – A key task has been completed ahead of schedule in the project to build a new safe containment (NSC) to enclose the nuclear plant in Chernobyl, which was destroyed in the disaster of 1996. The US$40m (£31m) project has built the arch end walls that will allow the main arch structure to be slid into its design position. Deputy project and program manager Viktor Popovskyi said that 9,600m3 of concrete and about 1,500t of rebar were used during the work to build the end walls. The scope of work included the reinforcement and sealing of existing power units structures – upon which the arch end walls will be abutted – as well as the design and construction of new dividing walls within existing structures. Preparatory work has also taken place for the installation and attachment of sealing anchors.

October 6, 2016 – Manilla Bulletin – Japan nuclear reactor shuttered for safety work – Utility Kyushu Electric is shutting down the No. 1 reactor at its Sendai plant in southern Sendai plant for a few months of inspections and maintenance, leaving Japan with just two operating reactors. But there is speculation that the reactor’s safety work could drag on longer. Thursday’s shutdown follows demands from the region’s top politician that Kyushu Electric conduct extra safety inspections at its two operating reactors in the Sendai plant — after deadly quakes hammered a neighbouring prefecture in April. Last month, the company refused governor Satoshi Mitazono’s demands to immediately shut down the reactors over safety concerns.

October 6, 2016 – Drowned In Sound – “It’s difficult to get these powerful stories across” – It’s been just over 30 years since the Ukrainian city of Pripyat suffered the devastating consequences of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. It’s one of only two nuclear meltdowns classified as a maximum level event, the other being the Fukushima Daiichi disaster of 2011. During the incident, 400 times more radioactive material was released from Chernobyl than was dropped in the atomic bombing of Hiroshima. The effects are still being felt in Ukraine and Belarus. Charities such as the Chernobyl Children’s Project, based in Glossop, have been helping young people from the area take recuperative holidays, allowing them to escape the rising dust radiation levels in the summer months.

October 6, 2016 – CaliforniaHealthline – Pricey New Treatment Roils Issues Of How To Treat Prostate Cancer – Men hoping to avoid some side effects of prostate cancer treatment are shelling out tens of thousands of dollars for a procedure whose long-term effects are unknown and insurers, including Medicare, won’t pay for. Proponents say high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) can have fewer negative side effects than surgery or radiation, while giving some patients another option between actively watching their cancer and those more aggressive steps. Critics, however, say the procedure is being oversold, leading some patients to get a treatment they don’t need. Device makers are busy selling the $500,000-and-up machines to doctors around the country and offering training courses. Billboards advertising this “new non-invasive treatment for prostate cancer” are springing up, while treatment center websites promise “a safer method” with benefits such as “no erectile dysfunction and no incontinence,” although studies show those side effects can occur, but less often than with other types of more aggressive treatments. The treatment can range in cost from $15,000 to $25,000.

October 6, 2016 – Medical XPress – Incidence of thyroid cancer on the rise – The incidence of thyroid cancer has tripled in the past three decades, yet the reason for this is not clear. Dr. David Goldenberg, chief of otolaryngology and head and neck surgery at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, notes the diagnostic tools are better, but he can’t get behind recent talk of overdiagnosis as the sole cause for the increase. Thyroid cancer occurs about three times more often in women than men, but Goldenberg said the jury is still out on whether reproductive hormones play a significant role in that. Risk factors for the disease include family history, being a woman, a low-iodine diet and exposure to ionizing radiation. Some theories include obesity as a possible risk factor, as well.

October 6, 2016 – Time – The Marshall Islands Cannot Sue Nuclear Powers for Proliferation, U.N. Court Rules – Dozens of nuclear tests took place at the island nation, sometimes wiping out entire atolls. The Marshall Islands — home to Bikini Atoll, where the first postwar U.S. nuclear test was conducted in 1946 —has been told by a top international court that its lawsuit against three nuclear powers over their alleged failure to stop nuclear proliferation cannot proceed. Agence France-Presse reports that the International Court of Justice (ICJ) “upholds the objection to jurisdiction” by the U.K., India and Pakistan, ruling that it “cannot proceed to the merits of the case” as there was no evidence the Pacific island nation ever had disputes or sought to negotiate with any of these countries over the nuclear issue.

October 6, 2016 – thedailystar.com – Nuclear plan gets backlash from left, right – A coalition of environmental and consumer activists warned Wednesday that New York electricity customers will be jolted by a “huge tax” stemming from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s plan to subsidize aging nuclear power plants. Customers of National Grid, NYSEG and other state-regulated utilities will see bills climb by more than $2 per month beginning next year — and even more in subsequent years — if the plan stays on track, the critics said. The proposal is part of Cuomo’s plan to ensure New York gets at least 50 percent of its power from renewable sources, including solar and wind, by 2030. He contends the plan makes New York a national leader in the push to curb climate change linked to greenhouse gases.

October 6, 2016 – World Nuclear News – Japan bolsters reprocessing work, reports on Fukushima radiation – Japan has established a new organisation tasked with managing its reprocessing of used fuel, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry has announced. In a statement on 3 October, the ministry said the Nuclear Reprocessing Organisation of Japan will be funded by the country’s power utilities to cover the cost of the reprocessing work. This is a mandatory requirement that replaces the previous expectation that utilities would voluntarily contribute to the reprocessing program. Separately, Japan has reported to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) that tests last month on discharges from the sub-drain and groundwater drainage systems of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant have confirmed that the radiation levels of sampled water were “substantially below” the operational targets set by operator Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco).

October 6, 2016 – Newswire – UChicago Site of Radiocarbon Dating Discovery Named Historic Landmark – It was while working in the Kent Laboratory building in the 1940s that Prof. Willard Libby and his UChicago associates developed radiocarbon dating—an innovative method to measure the age of organic materials. Scientists soon used the technique on materials ranging from the dung of a giant sloth from a Nevada cave; seaweed and algae from Monte Verde, Chile, the oldest archaeological site in the Western Hemisphere; the Shroud of Turin; and the meteorite that created the Henbury Craters in northern Australia. Now the American Chemical Society has designated the discovery of radiocarbon dating as a National Historic Chemical Landmark. The society will officially recognize the achievement at 4 p.m. Oct. 10, with the unveiling of a plaque in the foyer of the Kent Chemical Laboratory building at 1020 E. 58th St. This year marks the 70th anniversary of Libby’s first publication on radiocarbon dating, which appeared in the June 1, 1946 issue of Physical Review. The work earned Libby the 1960 Nobel Prize in chemistry “for determinations in archaeology, geology, geophysics and other branches of science.”

October 6, 2016 – Nuclear Energy Insider – Operators urged to prioritize labor plans to control decommissioning costs – Nuclear operators planning to close reactors must set out detailed plans for labor reductions and other regulation-driven decisions to ensure decommissioning funds cover rising cost estimates, Tom Magette, PWC’s Managing Director, Nuclear Capital projects & infrastructure, told the 2016 Nuclear Decommissioning & Used Fuel Strategy Summit on October 4. There are currently 18 U.S. nuclear power plants being decommissioned and this will soon increase following a recent spate of plant closure announcements due to sustained low power prices. The majority of current decommissioning projects are being carried out under the SAFSTOR method of deferred decontamination as operators expect Decommissioning Trust Funds (DTFs) to rise to cover future decommissioning spending. However, Rates of Return for DTFs have been lower than some expectations and current dollar estimates for decommissioning costs have risen while actual costs have varied widely.

October 6, 2016 – Nuclear Energy Insider – US utilities warn new rules could impact reactor closures – Operators have accelerated decommissioning plans following early plant closures and proposed changes to licensing rules are raising project risks, leading utility executives said at the 2016 Nuclear Decommissioning & Used Fuel Strategy Summit on October 3. There are currently 18 U.S. nuclear power plants being decommissioned and this will soon increase following a recent spate of plant closure announcements due to sustained low power prices. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is developing new rules to reduce the number of licensing amendments required post-shutdown but significant changes to existing regulatory frameworks could impact project timelines, Jim Madigan, CNO Technical Advisor and Director of Oversight, Regulatory Affairs & Nuclear Safety Culture, Southern California Edison (SCE), told conference attendees.

October 6, 2016 – Enformable – Uranium mining industry in survival mode after Fukushima – The hot word in the uranium mining market is “staying power”, as in who will have the staying power to survive the collapse of the uranium mining industry. The uranium mining industry is in an awful state while trying to recover from the effect that the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in Japan had on the global nuclear industry. The simple fact is that there is a glut of uranium available and no real need to explore new deposits or mine existing ones. The shutdown of nuclear power plants in the wake of the disaster generated a large surplus of uranium – combined with the rise of fracking and natural gas, drove uranium prices to record lows, and forced most of the few mining companies to shut down mines, lay off workers and reduce debt in a struggle just to survive. This could have long-term implications because it is expensive to shut down a uranium mining operation, and difficult to reverse.

October 6, 2016 – Athens Post – For What it’s Worth: Nuclear energy is the future of clean energy – In last week’s presidential debate, there was much discussion regarding energy policy. This discussion focused on issues such as climate change, investment in renewable energy resources and the role of fossil fuels going forward. As can be expected in a US presidential debate, this discussion was shallow, yielding only a few opportunities for the candidates to take pot shots at each other. The debate also touched on nuclear issues; specifically, proliferation and the Iran nuclear deal. However, neither Donald Trump nor Hillary Clinton even breathed a mention of the most important nuclear issue: nuclear energy. We are living in an age characterized by rising levels of greenhouse gases, shrinking reserves of fossil fuels, limited technological capabilities in regards to renewable energy resources and an expanding global population with growing energy demands. Given the challenges of such an era, it seems our only salvation will be found in the power of the atom. Nuclear power offers an alternative energy source that is not only cheap, bountiful, but also relatively safe and clean.

October 6, 2016 – Ruidoso News – Rising interest seen in Downwinders story – Demonstrators at the Stallion Gate during Saturday’s open house at the Trinity atomic test site said more people stopped to hear their story than at any protest in recent years. The Tularosa Basin Downwinders have been fighting for more than a decade to have victims of radiation exposure from the first-ever nuclear explosion in 1945 included in a federal law that later awarded compensation to military service members and others exposed during Nevada test explosions in the 1950s. Members of the group say more than 700 people have died of cancer and other causes related to the Trinity exposure, and the illnesses have continued to afflict many genetic descendants of those who were living and working in the basin and adjacent mountains when the blast went off and fallout drifted over the region.

October 6, 2016 – Los Alamos Monitor – Report: LANL to end on-site radioactive waste disposal at Area G in 2017 – A Los Alamos National Laboratory environmental report released has revealed that by Oct. 1, 2017, the lab will cease disposing of low-level radioactive waste on site. “The strategy for both low-level radiological waste and mixed low-level waste is to minimize its generation and to dispose of all newly generated waste off-site… No new, on-site disposal capacity will be developed,” read a statement in the report. The report also mentioned that the lab plans to dispose of low-level waste at “Area G” by Oct. 1, 2017. The report also indicated that for 2015 the amount of plutonium detected in the air was nine attocuries per cubic meter, which the lab categorized as the lowest it’s been in recent years, because there was not much soil activity at the site. The lab was shipping the low-level waste from Area G to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Carlsbad. That stopped when an improperly packed barrel shipped from the lab exploded at the plant in February 2014. The WIPP plant is due to resume partial operations in December.

October 6, 2016 – Aiken Standard – Waste Isolation Pilot Plant cave-in adds to safety questions – A recent cave-in at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, or WIPP, near Carlsbad, New Mexico, brings facility safety and operational readiness back under the microscope. WIPP is a deep underground salt mine repository meant to store some of the nation’s nuclear waste. The facility has been closed since a truck fire in February 2014. Crews have been working to address safety concerns, including potential issues with storage canisters. Those concerns played a role in the operational shut-down and have led to new requirements for sites, such as Savannah River Site in South Carolina, that send material to WIPP.

October 6, 2016 – Denver Post – Feds seek balance in converting Cold War plutonium trigger plant west of Denver to wildlife haven – The Cold War-era Rocky Flats nuclear weapons factory, long reviled as a source of plutonium dust, is becoming more of a haven for wildlife. A bear raised three cubs. Mountain lion tracks can be seen. A bull moose recently wandered across the 6,000-acre prairie and wetland refuge. A herd of elk, numbering 130 last year, grew to 150. This week, the feds are launching a planning process to allow for more people. “A wildlife refuge is not a park,” Rocky Flats manager Dave Lucas said, but the government in four “sharing sessions” seeks ideas for future trials for hiking, cycling and horse-riding where hundreds of military-industrial structures once stood.

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October 5, 2016 – 81 FR 69010-69011 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Processing Fitness-for-Duty Drug and Alcohol Cases – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is requesting public comments on proposed revisions to its Enforcement Policy (the Policy). The NRC is proposing to revise Section 4.1, “Considerations in Determining Enforcement Actions Involving Individuals,” of the Policy to indicate that the NRC typically will not consider Fitness-for-Duty (FFD) Drug and Alcohol (D&A) related violations for enforcement unless the licensee’s FFD program has apparent deficiencies.

October 5, 2016 – 81 FR 69088-69089 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – General Use of Locks in the Protection and Control of: Facilities, Radioactive Materials, Classified Information, Classified Matter, and Safeguards Information – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is issuing Revision 1 to Regulatory Guide (RG) 5.12, “General Use of Locks in Protection and Control of: Facilities Radioactive Materials, Classified Information, Classified Matter, and Safeguards Information.” This RG describes methods and procedures that the staff of the NRC considers acceptable for the selection, use, and control of locking devices in the protection of areas, facilities, certain radioactive materials, and specific types of information (e.g. classified matter, National Security Information (NSI), Restricted Data (RD), Formerly Restricted Data (FRD), Safeguards Information (SGI)).

October 5, 2016 – 81 FR 69054-69055 – DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY – Environmental Management Site-Specific Advisory Board, Northern New Mexico – This notice announces a combined meeting of the Environmental Monitoring and Remediation Committee and Waste Management Committee of the Environmental Management Site-Specific Advisory Board (EM SSAB), Northern New Mexico (known locally as the Northern New Mexico Citizens’ Advisory Board [NNMCAB]). The Federal Advisory Committee Act (Pub. L. 92-463, 86 Stat. 770) requires that public notice of this meeting be announced in the Federal Register. DATES: Wednesday, October 26, 2016 1:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m. ADDRESSES: NNMCAB Office, 94 Cities of Gold Road, Pojoaque, NM 87506. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Menice Santistevan, Northern New Mexico Citizens’ Advisory Board, 94 Cities of Gold Road, Santa Fe, NM 87506. Phone: (505) 995-0393; Fax: (505) 989-1752 or Email: menice.santistevan@em.doe.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Purpose of the Board: The purpose of the Board is to make recommendations to DOE-EM and site management in the areas of environmental restoration, waste management, and related activities.

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October 5, 2016 – Press Pieces

On October 5th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

October 5, 2016 – The Post – For What it’s Worth: Nuclear energy is the future of clean energy – In last week’s presidential debate, there was much discussion regarding energy policy. This discussion focused on issues such as climate change, investment in renewable energy resources and the role of fossil fuels going forward. As can be expected in a US presidential debate, this discussion was shallow, yielding only a few opportunities for the candidates to take pot shots at each other. The debate also touched on nuclear issues; specifically, proliferation and the Iran nuclear deal. However, neither Donald Trump nor Hillary Clinton even breathed a mention of the most important nuclear issue: nuclear energy. We are living in an age characterized by rising levels of greenhouse gases, shrinking reserves of fossil fuels, limited technological capabilities in regards to renewable energy resources and an expanding global population with growing energy demands. Given the challenges of such an era, it seems our only salvation will be found in the power of the atom. Nuclear power offers an alternative energy source that is not only cheap, bountiful, but also relatively safe and clean.

October 5, 2015 – Radio New Zealand – France recognises first Tahiti nuclear test victim – France has for the first time recognised a link between its nuclear weapon tests in the South Pacific and the illness of someone who never visited the test sites at Moruroa and Fangataufa. The disclosure was made by a Tahiti resident, Yves Conroy, in an address at the UN decolonisation debate in New York. He was one of 18 speakers at the UN in favour of ending French Polynesia’s colonial status. Mr Conroy said he received a letter from the French Compensation Committee (CIVEN) in July, acknowledging a link between the tests and his wife’s two cancers.

October 5, 2016 – Prague Daily Monitor – Czechs protest against planned nuclear waste repository – Fourteen municipalities and 11 associations affected by the preparations of an underground repository of spent nuclear fuel and other radioactive waste founded a non-profit society against the plan on Tuesday, their leaders said in a press release sent to CTK. The Platform Against the Underground Repository wants to insist on an open and transparent solution to the problem in which both the municipalities and the public would have a chance of defending their interests, they said. The main reason for founding the group was the dissatisfaction with the previous steps taken by the governmental institutions in charge of the issue, the representatives said.

October 5, 2016 – The Financial Express – ‘Atomic sandwich’ to power gen-next, energy-efficient devices – Scientists, including those of Indian origin, have designed new ‘atomic sandwiches’ – materials that could lead to the next generation of devices that have more computing power and consume 100 times less energy than current electronics. The material sandwiches together individual layers of atoms, producing a thin film with magnetic polarity that can be flipped from positive to negative or vice versa with small pulses of electricity. This property may be used to store digital 0’s and 1’s, the binary backbone that underpins computing devices.

October 5, 2016 – Malaysian Digest – IAEA To Conduct M’sia’s First Nuclear Infrastructure Review Next Week – Next week, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) experts will be in the country to conduct the first Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Review (INIR), says Malaysia Nuclear Power Corporation (MNPC) chief executive officer Mohd Zamzam Jaafar. He said the 12 experts, mostly from the IAEA headquarters in Vienna, Austria would review Malaysia’s state of preparedness for nuclear energy development, from Oct 10 to 17. “Malaysia is almost there (for nuclear energy development) but there are still certain things that need to be done,” he said, adding they included the tabling for nuclear energy bill and identifying a site for nuclear energy programme.

October 5, 2016 – The Argus – Radon: The silent killer lurking in your basement – When moving into a first house or apartment, students will find themselves bombarded with warnings about the dangers of living alone and tips to keep themselves safe. People are told what to do in case of a fire, where the fuse box is located and how to use it, and what to do in case a carbon monoxide alarm goes off. Through the crash course of dangers in the household, few are told about the threat of high radon levels, but it is important to know about this hazardous gas. Radon is a radioactive gas that occurs naturally when there is a breakdown of uranium in the soil. It does not have a colour, taste, or smell, which can make it hard to detect. Radon can enter your house, and once inside, the toxic gas collects and reaches levels that can be extremely dangerous to the human body.

October 5, 2016 – Augusta Free Press – UVA among first to use new tool for noninvasive brain surgery – The UVA Health System is the first hospital in Virginia – and among the first in the world – to use a noninvasive tool for brain surgery. UVA recently began treating patients with the Gamma Knife Icon, the newest version of technology used for noninvasive surgery in the brain and upper spine. The Gamma Knife helps protects healthy tissue in the brain by using 192 focused beams of high energy Gamma radiation to treat patients instead of traditional open surgery. Neurosurgeons and radiation oncologists at UVA’s Gamma Knife Center have pioneered the Gamma Knife’s use. Since 1989, UVA has treated more than 10,000 patients from around the world with the non-invasive procedure, which is typically complete in less than an hour. Worldwide, the Gamma Knife has been used to treat more than 1 million patients over the past 30 years.

October 5, 2016 – HealthNews Florida – Pricey New Treatment Roils Issues Of How To Treat Prostate Cancer – Men hoping to avoid some side effects of prostate cancer treatment are shelling out tens of thousands of dollars for a procedure whose long-term effects are unknown and insurers, including Medicare, won’t pay for. Proponents say high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) can have fewer negative side effects than surgery or radiation, while giving some patients another option between actively watching their cancer and those more aggressive steps. Critics, however, say the procedure is being oversold, leading some patients to get a treatment they don’t need.

October 5, 2016 – Blackburn News – Opposition Grows To Trucking Liquid Nuclear Waste – 27 Canadian and American organizations are calling on Prime Minister Trudeau and President Obama to respect the 2012 Great Lakes Water Agreement and stop the planned transport of highly radioactive waste from Chalk River, Ontario, to the U.S. Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility President Gordon Edwards says the Sierra Club will speak to the International Joint Commission in Toronto Wednesday. “In order to get to the United States, you have to cross the Blue Water Bridge or some other bridge somewhere,” he says. “If there is a serious accident or spill, the fact that this material is in liquid form means it can easily be dispersed into the waters of the Great Lakes.” Edwards says trucking 23,000 litres of a “witch’s brew” 1,100 miles over the Great Lakes water system is ludicrous, given the fact that the material has been solidified at Chalk River for 13 years.

October 5, 2016 – physicsworld.com – New imaging technique combines MRI with nuclear medicine – A new technique that combines magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and nuclear medicine has been developed by physicists in the US. The method uses the fact that the direction that a gamma ray is emitted from a radioactive nucleus is highly dependent on the direction of the nucleus’s magnetic moment. Much like conventional MRI, the technique involves placing the sample in a strong magnetic field that causes the magnetic moments of the nuclei to point in the direction of the field. Then a magnetic pulse causes the moments to wobble, much like a spinning top. In conventional MRI, this wobble is detected by the radio waves emitted by the sample and this provides important information about the local chemical composition within the sample. In this new technique developed by Gordon Cates, Wilson Miller and colleagues at the University of Virginia, the wobble is characterized by measuring the distribution of gamma rays emitted by radioactive nuclei – in this case xenon-131m. The team was able to image a glass container filled with a tiny amount of radioactive xenon gas. However, this took 60 hours to complete – which is far too long for practical imaging applications. If the technique can be improved, then patients could one day ingest a radioactive tracer that would then travel to a tumour or other tissue of interest. Doctors would then be able to use the technique to image the tissue and obtain new types of information about its composition.

October 5, 2016 – tribuneindia.com – Court rejects Marshall Islands’ nuclear case against India – The International Court of Justice (ICJ) on Wednesday rejected suits filed by the tiny Marshall Islands against the world’s nuclear powers that sought to force them to do more to disarm. Though the suits failed on procedural grounds, India, Pakistan and Britain were brought to the court to answer the complaint at public hearings in April. In its ruling in the country’s case against India, the first of the three to be decided on Wednesday, the court said it had accepted Indian arguments that the ICJ, also known as the World Court, should not have jurisdiction in the case. Judges said that while the Marshall Islands may not be satisfied with progress on nuclear disarmament, it had failed to show that it has any ongoing legal dispute with India fit for the court to adjudicate.

October 5, 2016 – Stockz News – Trending Stocks on the Move – Mosaic Co (NYSE:MOS), LOST -1.00% and closed at $24.64 in the last trading session. The last trading range of the stock ranges between $24.59 and $24.95. During the 52-week trading session the minimum price at which share price traded, registered at $22.02 and reached to max level of $36.95. Testing of nine wells near a sinkhole at a Mosaic Co fertilizer facility in Florida, site of a massive leak of contaminated water, shows that water meets safe drinking standards for radioactivity and damage has not spread beyond the site, the company said.

October 5, 2016 – Daily Galaxy – NASA: Supernova Enigma Solved –“Light Reached Earth 350 Years Ago” – The new NASA image above shows a more complete picture of Cassiopeia A, the remains of a star that blew up in a supernova event whose light reached Earth about 350 years ago, when it could have appeared to observers as a star that suddenly brightened. The remnant is located 11,000 light-years away from Earth. The mystery of how Cassiopeia A exploded is unraveling thanks to new data from NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR. In this image, NuSTAR data, which show high-energy X-rays from radioactive material, are colored blue. Lower-energy X-rays from non-radioactive material, imaged previously with NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory, are shown in red, yellow and green.

October 5, 2016 – NEI Press Release – Maria Korsnick Elected President and CEO of Nuclear Energy Institute – Maria Korsnick today was elected president and chief executive officer of the Nuclear Energy Institute, the policy organization for the U.S. nuclear energy industry, effective Jan. 1, 2017. Korsnick has served as NEI’s chief operating officer since May 2015 as a loaned executive from Exelon Generation and Constellation Energy Nuclear Group (CENG). In that role, she has guided NEI’s day-to-day operations and represented the industry before a multitude of stakeholders — including the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the Obama administration, Congress, state lawmakers, international nuclear professionals, think tanks and policymakers. She will succeed Marvin Fertel, who retires on Dec. 31 after nine years as NEI’s president and CEO.

October 5, 2016 – Charleston Post and Courier – South Carolina utilities, builder can’t agree on nuclear plant payments – South Carolina Electric & Gas and Santee Cooper have been unable to agree on payments with the contractor that’s expanding their nuclear power plant, leaving them about a month to hash out the dispute under an order issued Monday. The utilities have been in talks with Westinghouse Electric Co. for nearly a year, and the deadline expired July 1. They have been unable to come to terms over “the timing and amounts of various payments” related to work at the V.C. Summer Nuclear Station, SCE&G said in a June filing. The stalemate prompted the companies to refer the matter to a special panel they created last year to resolve disputed claims arising from the Midlands project.

October 5, 2016 – Pittsburgh Tribune – Nuclear plant security guard lied, but explosives detector functioned, NRC says – Federal investigators say there was no security breach at a Beaver County nuclear plant last year when a guard sent 150 employees through an out-of-service explosives detector because the device was still working as intended. Investigators from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission investigated the March 30, 2015, incident at FirstEnergy Corp.’s Beaver Valley Power Station in Shippingport, where the guard at the main entrance sent about 150 employees through an explosives detector despite a sign that said the detector was out of service, NRC spokesman Neil Sheehan said. The guard later told officials at Securitas, her employer providing security at the plant for FirstEnergy, that she hadn’t noticed the sign until she found it on the floor. But surveillance video appeared to show the guard noticing the sign after she’d sent people through, then taking the sign down and putting it on the floor herself, according to an NRC report released Monday.

October 5, 2016 – World Nuclear News – Watts Bar 2 completes power ascension testing – When Watts Bar 2 reached first criticality in May, it was the first nuclear unit to start up in the USA in a decade. The 1165 MWe (net) pressurized water reactor (PWR) was synchronized to the grid on 3 June and has undergone a series of detailed and highly rigorous tests at various power levels to ensure that all systems operate safely as designed. The unit successfully completed its final power ascension test – a 50% load rejection from full power, to test the system’s ability to withstand a sudden loss of load and return safely to normal operating conditions – on 30 September. It will now begin a pre-commercial period of extended full power operation to further test its reliability.

October 5, 2016 – PRNewswire – Plant Farley Unit 1 planned activities underway for the production of clean, safe, reliable and affordable nuclear energy – On Saturday, Oct. 1, Unit 1 of the Joseph M. Farley Nuclear Plant began a planned refueling and maintenance outage. In addition to refueling the reactor and performing regular maintenance and testing, workers will make upgrades to plant systems and components to enhance efficiency and reliability. “The key to a safe and successful outage is our outstanding employees and supporting partners,” said Site Vice President Cheryl Gayheart. “I am proud of the preparations we have made, and our entire team is ready to accomplish this refueling outage safely using our expertise and teamwork.” Plant Farley’s operators were making final preparations to begin the outage when the unit automatically shut down due to a malfunction of a main steam isolation valve. The safety system operated as designed, the plant was stable and the team established shut down conditions in support of the outage.

October 5, 2016 – St. Louis Post-Dispatch – Tests underway on creek in Hazelwood area that turned white – Water samples from a St. Louis County creek that turned white over the weekend are still being tested and it’s too early to conclude what caused the problem, the state Department of Resources said Monday. Coldwater Creek, which runs through the Hazelwood area in St. Louis County, has been a source of concern for area residents for years after radioactive contamination was confirmed in several yards that back up to the waterway. The milky white water raised new worries on Sunday morning, but the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers insisted Monday that whatever is in the water has nothing to do with the agency’s remediation efforts to remove soil contaminated by remnants of the nation’s early nuclear weapons program.

October 5, 2016 – Albuquerque Journal – WIPP plans will go on even if Russia quits plutonium deal – Should the U.S. continue to hold up its end of the bargain, Russia’s withdrawal from the agreement would likely have little effect on the Department of Energy’s plans to send a parallel portion of plutonium – six metric tons – to New Mexico’s Waste Isolation Pilot Plant. That plutonium, which is not quite weapons grade, and would be diluted and packaged to meet disposal criteria at WIPP, is not actually part of the 34 metric tons covered by the agreement. But it is being viewed as a trial run “to establish that it’s cost-effective and safe” to dilute and dispose of it at WIPP, said Ed Lyman, senior scientist at the Union of Concerned Scientists.

October 5, 2016 – KUER 90.1 – Downwinders of Utah Archive Opens At U’s Marriott Library – A new Downwinders of Utah Archive opened Monday at the University of Utah J. Willard Marriott Library. It interactively shows the story of radioactive fallout in Utah related to atmospheric nuclear testing in Nevada in the 1950’s. Justin Sorensen specializes in geospatial content at the Marriott Library. He says the Atomic Energy Commission’s primary focus in the early days of testing was creating an image of strength and superiority no matter the consequences. “And that really was what the story was until you get to the late 70’s and 80’s when you see all these victims who are actually downwinders,” Sorensen says, “and what they’ve gone through, and ordeals, and really see what was actually happening at the time.” Sorensen says the archive contains everything from recorded interviews with downwinders to extensive cartographic maps and dramatic images of mushroom cloud heights based on raw numbers.

October 5, 2016 – Casper Star-Tribune – Uranium company will not be fined after former employee falsified safety records – An employee of Cameco, which operates Wyoming’s largest uranium mine, falsified a health survey required after two other workers were potentially exposed to radioactive material in 2013, regulators announced Monday. In an agreement confirmed Friday between the company and federal regulators, Cameco will not be cited for a violation or pay a penalty but must take steps to ensure a similar incident doesn’t again take place. Cameco is also working to end a federal halt on the transport of its nuclear waste after two spillage incidents in the last nine months.

October 5, 2016 – Associated Press – US wants to build Idaho facility for warships’ nuclear waste – The Navy and U.S. Department of Energy want to build a $1.6 billion facility at a nuclear site in eastern Idaho that would handle fuel waste from the nation’s fleet of nuclear-powered warships through at least 2060. The new facility is needed to keep nuclear-powered aircraft carriers and submarines deployed, according to an environmental impact statement made public Friday. It would be built at the Energy Department’s 890-square-mile site, which includes the Idaho National Laboratory, considered the nation’s primary lab for nuclear research. The government also looked at two other alternatives: continuing to use outdated facilities at the site or overhauling them. The effect to the environment would be small for all three options, the document concluded.

October 5, 2016 – Los Alamos Daily Post – NNSA And Bulgaria Partner To Complete Nuclear Detection Architecture – Representatives of the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration (DOE/NNSA), the U.S. Embassy in Sofia, Bulgaria, and the Bulgarian government this week celebrated the completion of Bulgaria’s nuclear detection architecture, which will enhance efforts to prevent smuggling of dangerous radioactive materials across its borders. National and foreign dignitaries, including U.S. Ambassador Eric Rubin and Deputy Prime Minister Rumiana Bachvarova, gathered in Sofia to highlight the successful implementation of 27 radiation detection systems at locations across Bulgaria.

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October 4, 2016 – 81 FR 68474 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards (ACRS); Meeting of the ACRS Subcommittee on Radiation Protection and Nuclear Materials; Notice of Meeting – The ACRS Subcommittee on Radiation Protection and Nuclear Materials will hold a meeting on October 18, 2016, Room T-2B3, 11545 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland. The meeting will be open to public attendance.

October 4, 2016 – 81 FR 68462 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards (ACRS); Meeting of the ACRS Subcommittee on Fukushima; Notice of Meeting – The ACRS Subcommittee on Fukushima will hold a meeting on October 19, 2016, Room T-2B1, 11545 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852. The meeting will be open to public attendance.

October 4, 2016 – 81 FR 68461-68462 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards (ACRS); Meeting of the ACRS Subcommittee on Fukushima; Notice of Meeting – The ACRS Subcommittee on Fukushima will hold a meeting on October 19, 2016, Room T-2B1, 11545 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852. The meeting will be open to public attendance with the exception of portions that may be closed to protect information that is proprietary pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(4).

October 4, 2016 – 81 FR 68461 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards (ACRS) Meeting of the ACRS Subcommittee on Metallurgy & Reactor Fuels; Notice of Meeting – The ACRS Subcommittee on Metallurgy & Reactor Fuels will hold a meeting on October 21, 2016, Room T-2B1, 11545 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland. The meeting will be open to public attendance.

October 4, 2016 – 81 FR 68462-68466 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Susquehanna Nuclear, LLC; Susquehanna Steam Electric Station, Units 1 and 2; Consideration of Indirect License Transfer – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) received and is considering approval of an application filed by Susquehanna Nuclear, LLC (Susquehanna Nuclear), on June 29, 2016. The application seeks NRC approval of the indirect transfer of Susquehanna Nuclear’s interests in Renewed Facility Operating License Nos. NPF-14 and NPF-22 for Susquehanna Steam Electric Station, Units 1 and 2 (SSES), respectively, as well as the general license for the SSES Independent Spent Fuel Storage Installation (ISFSI), from the current parent holder, Talen Energy Corporation (Talen), to Riverstone Holdings, LLC (Riverstone). Because the application contains sensitive unclassified non-safeguards information (SUNSI) an order imposes procedures to obtain access to SUNSI for contention preparation.

October 4, 2016 – 81 FR 68467-68474 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Applications and Amendments to Facility Operating Licenses and Combined Licenses Involving Proposed No Significant Hazards Considerations and Containing Sensitive Unclassified Non-Safeguards Information and Order Imposing Procedures for Access to Sensitive Unclassified Non-Safeguards Information – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) received and is considering approval of four amendment requests. The amendment requests are for Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station, Units 1, 2, and 3; Columbia Generating Station; Hope Creek Generating Station and Salem Nuclear Generating Station, Unit Nos. 1 and 2; and Virgil C. Summer Nuclear Station, Unit No. 1. For each amendment request, the NRC proposes to determine that they involve no significant hazards consideration. Because each amendment request contains sensitive unclassified non-safeguards information (SUNSI) an order imposes
procedures to obtain access to SUNSI for contention preparation.

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