Team Closes In on New Plan for Processing U.S. Bomb-Usable Uranium

Global Security Newswire Staff
Add to Briefcase
Global Security Newswire Staff
April 1, 2014, 8:35 a.m.

A key of­fi­cial said his team has reached “strong con­sensus” on a po­ten­tial sub­sti­tute for a planned bomb-urani­um plant, the Knoxville News Sen­tinel re­ports.

Oak Ridge Na­tion­al Labor­at­ory Dir­ect­or Thom Ma­son said his “Red Team” of roughly two dozen spe­cial­ists would put for­ward a single al­tern­ate pro­pos­al for hous­ing op­er­a­tions now slated for trans­fer to the still-un­built Urani­um Pro­cessing Fa­cil­ity, or “UPF” for short.

“Now wheth­er or not it’s bet­ter, that will be the judg­ment of the [Na­tion­al Nuc­le­ar Se­cur­ity Ad­min­is­tra­tion],” he told the News Sen­tinel on Monday. The urani­um plant has been slated for con­struc­tion at the Y-12 Na­tion­al Se­cur­ity Com­plex in Ten­ness­ee, but the site’s pro­jec­ted price tag has ris­en dra­mat­ic­ally over the atom­ic agency’s ini­tial es­tim­ate from a dec­ade ago.

“The UPF concept had a lot of at­tract­ive op­tions in terms of the max­im­um con­sol­id­a­tion [of urani­um op­er­a­tions], min­im­um foot­print, op­er­a­tion­al flex­ib­il­ity from get­ting everything in one fa­cil­ity. And, in some of those di­men­sions, al­most any­thing else is go­ing to be less op­tim­um,” Ma­son said.

He ad­ded, though, that his group saw a need for “ur­gency” in mov­ing sens­it­ive bomb-pro­cessing op­er­a­tions out of the Y-12 fa­cil­ity’s aging “9212” build­ing, where they risk delays if the site en­coun­ters prob­lems. Ma­son’s team is ex­pec­ted to present a pro­pos­al that could be ex­ecuted by 2025, at a cost not ex­ceed­ing $6.5 bil­lion.

“Part of the chal­lenge with the UPF as it’s cur­rently con­figured is it’s large and ex­pens­ive. Be­cause of that, it takes a long time. You have to keep in the [ex­ist­ing fa­cil­it­ies] for longer than you like,” Ma­son said.

The of­fi­cial said his group would spend the com­ing two weeks pre­par­ing a sum­mary of its pro­pos­al for sub­mis­sion to NNSA Act­ing Ad­min­is­trat­or Bruce Held. He stressed that fur­ther work would be ne­ces­sary to flesh out the find­ings.

What We're Following See More »
STARTS LEGAL FUND FOR WH STAFF
Trump to Begin Covering His Own Legal Bills
1 days ago
THE DETAILS
DISCUSSED THE MATTER FOR A NEW BOOK
Steele Says Follow the Money
1 days ago
STAFF PICKS

"Christopher Steele, the former British intelligence officer who wrote the explosive dossier alleging ties between Donald Trump and Russia," says in a new book by The Guardian's Luke Harding that "Trump's land and hotel deals with Russians needed to be examined. ... Steele did not go into further detail, Harding said, but seemed to be referring to a 2008 home sale to the Russian oligarch Dmitry Rybolovlev. Richard Dearlove, who headed the UK foreign-intelligence unit MI6 between 1999 and 2004, said in April that Trump borrowed money from Russia for his business during the 2008 financial crisis."

Source:
BRITISH PUBLICIST CONNECTED TO TRUMP TOWER MEETING
Goldstone Ready to Meet with Mueller’s Team
1 days ago
THE LATEST

"The British publicist who helped set up the fateful meeting between Donald Trump Jr. and a group of Russians at Trump Tower in June 2016 is ready to meet with Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller's office, according to several people familiar with the matter. Rob Goldstone has been living in Bangkok, Thailand, but has been communicating with Mueller's office through his lawyer, said a source close to Goldstone."

Source:
SPEAKING ON RUSSIAN STATE TV
Kislyak Says Trump Campaign Contacts Too Numerous to List
1 days ago
THE LATEST

"Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak said on Wednesday that it would take him more than 20 minutes to name all of the Trump officials he's met with or spoken to on the phone. ... Kislyak made the remarks in a sprawling interview with Russia-1, a popular state-owned Russian television channel."

Source:
“BLOWING A SURE THING”
Sabato Moves Alabama to “Lean Democrat”
2 days ago
WHY WE CARE
×
×

Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.

Login