Enriched Uranium Residues Recovery Plant (EURRP) reconfiguration

RPS is providing safety support/management to the Enriched Uranium Residues Recovery Plant (EURRP) reconfiguration project. The EURRP recovers enriched uranium from contaminated solid residues resulting from the fabrication of nuclear fuel for reactors. The plant is currently being modified to accommodate residues (UBM) from overseas which are likely to contain much lower concentrations of uranium than EURRP is currently able to process.

In addition to modifying EURRP to allow the future spectrum of feedstocks to be processed, the opportunity is also being taken to include process/safety improvements within the proposed design changes, which will allow the processing to conclusion of legacy wastes.

Key details

Project name
Enriched Uranium Residues Recovery Plant (EURRP) reconfiguration

Client
Springfields Fuels Limited (SFL)

Location
Preston, Lancashire, UK

Services provided

  • Safety case support/management

Challenge

Inefficiencies within the existing EURRP process have led to much solid and liquid waste being unfit for direct sentencing off-site. This has been attributed to poor leaching of uranium into solution and inadequate washing of the sludge. Poor leaching results in excess levels of insoluble uranium and inadequate washing results in too much soluble uranium in the sludge and filter cake produced. EURRP requires reconfiguration to address both these issues.

Springfields UBM SCM - project image.jpg

Solution

We have integrated experienced personnel into the EURRP reconfiguration project team to assist SFL and its partners in finding cost-effective solutions to these issues in a timely manner, whilst being mindful of the potential hazards involved.

The overall scheme for the processing of UBM residues in the EURRP facility will continue to use as much of the existing plant as possible, and includes:

  • Modifying the chemical processes within the dissolver
  • Installing the facility to recombine the dissolver products, mixing these with filter aid to enable greatly improved filtration by two new filter presses
  • Installing the facility to directly discharge dissolver liquors with very low uranium content post-filtration, to minimise use of process chemicals
  • Recycling some of the concentrated uranium solution from the SEP into the lower-uranium concentration solution from the dissolver, to produce a uranium concentration suitable for SEP feed

Support services delivered to date have included:

  • Production of an overarching strategy paper for safety and environment
  • Optioneering studies
  • Chairing numerous hazard identification studies
  • Production of radiological/chemotoxic safety assessments
  • Managing the delivery of the suite of safety case deliverables
  • Production of an overall preliminary safety report for the preliminary design

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