Federal Services for clean-up and closure

Orano Federal Services matches the evolving needs of the U.S. government with current and proven clean-up technologies that help meet the nation’s clean-up and closure needs. Our expertise covers used fuel management; packaging and transportation; facility decommissioning and dismantling (D&D); and waste management and environmental remediation.
We are a pre-selected partner on a number of U.S. Department of Energy site operations contracts, including the Nationwide Deactivation, Decommissioning and Removal Contract, the Savannah River Remediation contract, the Tank Operations Clean-up contract, and the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant contract.
Federal Services for clean-up and closure

Used Fuel Management

Orano’s global core business is the management of used nuclear fuel. Orano Federal Services has extensive experience in U.S. used nuclear fuel and high level waste management practices through our long history of supporting used nuclear fuel research and development projects and clean-up projects for the U.S. Department of Energy.

Learn more about Orano's used nuclear fuel management, storage, and transport expertise. 


High Burn-Up Research & Development

Orano’s used fuel expertise is evident by its work on the industry-recognized High Burn-up research and development project. Orano has been a member of a team that is currently conducting full-scale testing using High Burn-up Used Fuel to collect confirmatory data for extended dry cask storage of High Burn-up fuel at commercial nuclear plant sites. Orano Federal Services, working with its affiliate Orano TN, modified the TN-32 bolted storage cask that was loaded with various types of High Burn-up fuel in 2017. Thermocouples were inserted through the lid into the fuel assemblies to collect the thermal data. The specialty instrumented cask will collect thermal data for the next ten years.

Project information:

De-Inventory Plans

Orano has experience and expertise preparing De-Inventory Plans as an industry advisor to the Department of Energy for stranded used nuclear fuel at shutdown commercial nuclear sites. These plans provide the Department of Energy with information that it can use for planning options with decision-makers on the design of an integrated nuclear waste management disposition system that will someday see stranded used nuclear fuel moved to either consolidated interim storage or to a permanent repository.

Extended Storage Licensing

Orano has recent experience with extended storage licensing as part of a team that re-licensed the Three Mile Island-2 (TMI-2) Independent Used Fuel Storage Installation (ISFSI) in Pennsylvania. Orano prepared the Environmental Report Submittal to support the re-licensing application and provided the completed relicense application. In our teaming agreement with DOE Idaho and Spectra Tech, Inc., our Federal Way Office prepared a complete NRC License Application in accordance with NUREG 1927, Rev 1 for the unique NUHOMS® design for a vented system utilizing carbon steel containers made for this first-of-a-kind design application. The tasks for completing the license extension application was completed ahead of schedule and resulted in a very limited number of Requests for Additional Information (RAIs) from the U.S. NRC, indicating the exceptional quality of the application.

Corporate Reachback Capability

Orano Federal Services has the benefit of corporate reachback to its used fuel management experts at its French reprocessing facilities, where each year Orano transports and manages more than 800 tHM. Orano brings to the U.S. market global expertise in all areas of radioactive waste management and design, including the retrieval, characterization, processing, conditioning, packaging, transportation, temporary storage or final disposal of radioactive waste. Orano also has the capability to qualify residual moisture after typical drying processes, quantify residual moisture in damaged fuel after drying, understand the cask drying process, and develop modeling tools for utilities, vendors and regulators. Orano also has remote welding capabilities that are used to mitigate stress corrosion cracking and to perform the remote welding of dry storage canisters.


Packaging & Transportation

Orano provides customized and comprehensive solutions from package design to transport operations. Orano personnel’s broad base of technical skills and experience executing nuclear, mechanical, structural, and thermal design analyses includes fabrication and testing of transportation and handling equipment.


Packaging Design Analyses and Testing

Orano develops and designs systems that meet the U.S. Department of Energy and U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission requirements for transportation packages. We perform engineering analyses or physical testing on these designs, including structural, thermal, shielding, and criticality analyses for normal and hypothetical conditions. We blend proven analytic methodologies with modeling techniques using integrated specialized engineering disciplines, such as engineering structures, dynamics, mechanics, heat transfer, containment, shielding and criticality, to provide realistic solutions.

Brochure: Orano Federal Services licensed packaging

Research Reactor Packaging

Orano designs, fabricates and licenses packages on a daily basis. For example, Orano has designed and delivered the NRC-licensed Battelle Research Reactor (BRR) package, a cask capable of transporting used research reactor fuel (Type B) under U.S. Department of Transportation regulations for the Battelle Energy Alliance. Orano increased the versatility of existing package design by maximizing shielding within the weight limits, customizing internal baskets for the payloads, and simplifying the impact limiters.

Transport Operations

Orano also provides transport operations, including on-site staffing and management of hazardous material packaging and shipping for a wide variety of radioactive wastes, sources, fuel, and other hazardous materials. In the U.S., we supplied skilled staff to coordinate and support packaging and transportation activities at the Idaho National Laboratory. Globally, we securely and efficiently conduct about 2,000 hazardous and radioactive shipments each year, and have been for more than 10 years with no non-conformance reports issued against our program.

Learn more about Orano's transport expertise.


Facility D&D

Orano has the capabilities to decontaminate, decommission and dismantle nuclear facilities for federal agencies using proven Orano technologies that have been successfully deployed around the world. Orano has been actively involved in decommissioning U.S. Department of Energy reactors and university research reactors for more than 25 years.


Orano also performs project planning, site characterization, regulatory compliance, dismantlement and segmentation, removal of the reactor pressure vessel and internals, waste packaging and disposal and final status (MARSSIM) surveys. Orano has experience preparing decommissioning plans, environmental reports and license termination plans to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Historical Site Assessment

Orano performed the Historical Site Assessment (HSA) at the SONGS nuclear facility as the fundamental first step in the decommissioning planning stage. This collected historical information provides the basis for informed decisions regarding the current radiological and hazardous status of systems, structures, and environmental areas.

Omega West Reactor Decommissioning

Orano was a major partner on the Omega West Reactor decommissioning project at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Orano developed all of the project plans and procedures such as the Project Execution Plan, Work Breakdown Structure, Health & Safety Plan, Radiation Protection Plan, Mobilization and Demobilization Plans, Characterization planning, and Hazardous Material Abatement planning. Orano also managed and controlled all aspects of cost and schedule performance, license and permitting, facility documentation, and compliance with all federal, state, and local regulations in the packaging, classification and disposal of the waste. This project was completed within 18 months – two months ahead of schedule – and recorded 75,000 hours without a lost time accident.

CP-5 Reactor Decommissioning

Orano completed decommissioning and dismantling activities on the CP-5 reactor at the Argonne National Laboratory, which involved removing the remaining equipment from the CP-5 Large Scale Demonstration Project and culminated in unrestricted release of the facility. The scope of work included radiological characterization; demolition of the bio-shed and supporting structures, including pumps, ventilation systems, tanks, valves, filters, polar cranes, and bridge cranes; hot cell demolition; asbestos removal; and decontamination throughout the facility. Orano handled and packaged hazardous, mixed, and low-level waste, including materials with dose rates exceeding 250 R/hr. Orano also performed large-cask loading, handling, and decontamination. Orano personnel worked over 60,000 hours on this project without a lost time or recordable incident. The project was completed within the contractual completion date.

Contaminated Soil Sorting Unit

Orano developed a Contaminated Soil Sorting Unit (CSSU) to treat soil with different characteristics as a process for sorting out foreign material intermingled in soil. Decontamination bulk bags containing radioactive soils from decontamination work with activity over 8,000 Bq/kg were selected from a temporary storage area and classified into three categories based on their surface dose rates measured by the simple measurement method. The soils contained in the bags of each section were then sorted using a system combining a roll screen system and the CSSU system, and the share of soils with lower activity that can be separated was studied. The share of volume reduction of contaminated soil as a result of the removal of foreign material through roll system was also studied.

Product flier: Sodium Waste Remediation


Waste Treatment & Environmental Remediation

Orano’s capabilities in environmental remediation cover the complete spectrum of issues faced at Department of Energy sites. Orano brings expertise and experience in the complex regulatory infrastructure governing radioactive waste treatments, characterization, certification and transportation from having participated in planning, development and execution of DOE-compliant waste programs for multiple sites.

With more than 50 years of international waste clean-up expertise, Orano applies global lessons learned to issues being faced by our U.S. customers and partners.

Orano mobile hot cell

Waste Characterization Programs

Orano develops and implements waste characterization programs as part of waste treatment plans at numerous clean-up projects. Orano has expertise in the development of waste management plans and procedures to ensure compliance with applicable requirements, including the Waste Acceptance Criteria (WAC) at the disposal site.

Product Flier: Mobile Hot Cell

Liquid and Sludge Retrieval

Orano’s experience with liquid and sludge retrieval includes the deactivation and dismantling of complex process equipment and structures, such as tanks, dissolvers, evaporators, filters, and associated piping. Orano also develops, qualifies, and operates radioactive liquid and sludge waste remote or contact-handled retrieval systems selected and adapted to the waste’s radioactivity level and tank access conditions. For example, Orano was selected for the Hanford K-Basin Sludge Treatment Project based on its expertise treating radioactive sludge, one of the major challenges of the Hanford site clean-up. The project to retrieve, process and package radioactive sludge from used nuclear fuel corrosion required Orano to design, procure, construct, test and commission integrated systems, including a full-scale testing facility to qualify the sludge retrieval and treatment processes.

Product Fliers


In-can Vitrification Process

Orano's DEM&MELT process is a robust, simple, and versatile in situ vitrification process for treating intermediate and high-level waste arising from remediation and D&D. DEM&MELT has a modular design and operates within a compact unit, ensuring significant volume reduction, safe containment of radionuclides and waste stabilization.

Product flier: DEM&MELT

Mercury Contamination Treatment

Orano designs, builds and operates systems to recover mercury onsite from soil, buildings and components contaminated during facility operations. Orano’s experience with on-site mechanical treatment for coarse material includes sorting and washing for surface contamination, and Orano’s Thermal Desorption Unit (TDU) technology for fine soils. The TDU technology has achieved a throughput of 330 tons a week for material less than 1 cm in size, and, separately, processed 42,300 tons of material resulting in recovery of more than two tons of mercury, including more than 772 pounds of pure mercury. Though this project was complicated by a restricted working space, Orano achieved limited impact to the environment through developing effective dust containment procedures, also applicable for other remediation projects.

Product flier: Mercury Recovery 


Management & Operations

Orano is a a pre-selected partner on a number of U.S. Department of Energy site operations contracts, including the Nationwide Deactivation, Decommissioning and Removal Contract, the Savannah River Remediation contract, the Tank Operations Clean-up contract, and the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant contract.
Orano AY-102 tank mixer pump removal

Nationwide Deactivation, Decommissioning and Removal Contract (DD&R)

Orano Federal Services was selected by the Department of Energy Environmental Management Office (DOE EM) for the competitively awarded Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) Nationwide Deactivation, Decommissioning and Removal (DD&R) contract. The IDIQ master contract is for 10 years with a total potential value of $3 billion in task orders to be bid under this contract.

As the prime on this DD&R contract, Orano is leading an expert team of subcontractors:
  • Arcadis U.S.
  • Banda Group International
  • FE&C
  • NorthStar
  • Parsons
  • Veolia Nuclear Solutions - Federal Services
  • Waste Control Specialists
Orano and NorthStar are also teamed in a commercial joint venture named Accelerated Decommissioning Partners (ADP) and are conducting the expedited removal of shutdown U.S. nuclear energy facilities.

Plateau Remediation Contract (PRC)

Orano supported mission objectives in engineering, design, and technical services for activities such as the Soil and Groundwater Remediation Project, the K-Basin Sludge Treatment Project, and other Waste and Fuels Management projects; executive management for Engineer-Procure-Construct (EPC) projects; expert review panel participation; and, technology development and technology transfer services.

  • Engineering Container Retrieval and Transfer System (ECRTS) - The Sludge Treatment Project demonstrated Orano’s engineering approach and execution for first-of-a-kind, one-of-a-kind nuclear projects. This project was completed on schedule and within budget to support several critical testing activities. Orano provided: the overall Sludge Treatment Project alternatives analysis that evaluated hundreds of options and determined a path forward for each of the different sludge streams; conceptual design package approved by the Department of Energy, which included full scale equipment testing and sludge simulant development supported conceptual design; and technology readiness testing and preliminary and final design.
  • Sludge Retrieval from Horizontal Settler Tanks - The successful retrieval of sludge from horizontal settler tanks required designing and developing a first-of-a-kind system to resolve significant technical challenges, including remotely accessing tanks in a congested location, blindly mobilizing and retrieving high density uranium particles, and remotely measuring cleanliness to confirm compliance with retrieval requirements, all within a radioactive environment with material that was not well characterized.

Tank Operations Contract (TOC) – AY-102

Orano personnel were key to the successful AY-102 Recovery Project at Hanford. The project called for removing 750,000 gallons of nuclear waste from a faulty 40-year-old underground double shelled storage tank and transferring it to different tanks in the tanks farm for secure storage – protecting the nearby Columbia River.

  • Planning & Infrastructure Upgrades - Preparing for AY-102 retrieval required detailed planning and more than two years of infrastructure upgrade work on both AY-102 and receipt of tank AP-102.
  • Transferring Liquid Waste - The first phase of retrieval operations involved transferring liquid waste (supernate) to a double-shell tank and then using two standard sluicing cannons to remove and transfer sludge material to tank AP-102. The final retrieval phase required four extended-reach sluicers.

Video: PMI Project of the Year Award - Hanford Double Shell Tank AY-102 Recovery Project

Savannah River Remediation (SRR)

As a member of Savannah River Remediation, LLC (SRR), Orano is a named a subcontractor to the DOE for the operations of the Liquid Waste facilities at the Savannah River Site (SRS), in Aiken, South Carolina. The team’s scope of work includes the management and disposition of over 36 million gallons of radioactive liquid waste from over 50 years of site operations.

  • Melter Technology - Orano provides engineering expertise in melter technology (vitrification), and vitrification plant operating experience to support tank closures and maximize DWPF throughput.
  • Powder Injection Laser Welding Repairs - Orano recently completed Powder Injection Laser Welding repairs to the leak in the 3H evaporator at the Savannah River Site, including robotic delivery of components and robotic performance of the weld.
  • Enhanced Chemical Cleaning - Orano developed, tested, verified, and qualified a tank heel-removal process called Enhanced Chemical Cleaning (ECC) for treating high-level waste residues remaining after bulk waste removal from than tanks.

Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP)

As a member of Nuclear Waste Partnership, Orano managed and administered the Central Characterization Program (CCP) to characterize and certify waste for disposal at WIPP. The characterization activities include Acceptable Knowledge (AK) development, visual examination and real-time radiography, Non-Destructive Assay (NDA), and flammable gas analysis. CCP’s Waste Certification officers ensure all characterization data meets the WIPP Waste Acceptance Criteria (WIPP-WAC) prior to certifying waste for disposal at WIPP.

  • Characterization and Certification - Orano continues to identify new procedures and processes that can improve characterization and certification efficiency and accuracy. Orano led the effort to obtain regulatory approval to use shielded containers for shipment and emplacement of lower activity RH-TRU waste streams, which triples the numbers of containers per shipment.
  • Technical Support Services - Orano provides technical support services to perform safe and compliant waste characterization and certification activities, and is the leader in providing characterization techniques for large containers.
  • Analysis of Organic and Inorganic Solids - Orano analyzes organic and inorganic solids, and solids and debris using four mobile high resolution gamma spectroscopy systems and three mobile neutron/gamma combined counters to perform NDA, and uses seven mobile Real-Time Radiography (RTR) systems to perform NDE. Orano personnel have provided expert analyses, waste acceptance criteria knowledge, isotopic modeling and NDA/AK interactions at generator sites to characterize TRU waste for disposal at WIPP for both CH-TRU debris and soils waste.
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