The Hanford tank farm contractor and the Department of Energy have been recognized for their successful project to install a large riser in underground Tank C-105, which holds high-level radioactive waste.
The Columbia River Basin Chapter of the Project Management Institute named the work by Washington River Protection Solutions and the DOE Office of River Protection its project of the year.
The project was selected based on superior performance and the use of project management principles, according to the chapter.
Workers spent more than a year planning, testing and rehearsing before work started.
A 39-ton, radioactively contaminated heel pit was removed in a single piece and soil excavated, to allow access to the dome of the tank. A custom core drilling machine then cut a hole in the dome of the tank, allowing a much larger riser to be installed.
A large riser was needed to get a Mobile Arm Retrieval System with vacuum capabilities into the tank. It's one of the largest waste retrieval systems inserted into a Hanford tank.
The work was completed on time and within budget, according to the nomination for the award.