Office for Nuclear Regulation

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Meetings at AWE Burghfield

Executive summary

Purpose of intervention

This report records the seven meetings that I attended at AWE during November 2015.

In two of the meetings I carried out interventions to assess the adequacy of criticality safety assessments that AWE are undertaking in support of a nuclear materials management facility Justification of Continued Operations (JoCO) and Periodic Review of Safety (PRS) submissions.

In one meeting, the purpose was to obtain information on the progress that AWE was making on the Burghfield JoCO/PRS.  The meeting allowed ONR inspectors to discuss progress with AWE staff and to examine examples of JoCo/PRS documentation being produced by AWE. A further JoCo/ PRS information gathering meeting was also held.  

The remaining four meetings covering ongoing regulatory issues were led by other inspectors and are documented in their intervention reports as appropriate.

Interventions and meetings

The two inspections covered in this report are:

Nuclear Materials Management Facility PRS Criticality – an inspection of AWE’s approach to dealing with the criticality issues identified by AWE in the ongoing facility PRS.

Burghfield Criticality Issues  – an inspection of AWE’s approach to dealing with the criticality issues identified in the Burghfield JoCO/ PRS.

Key Findings, Inspector's Opinions and Reasons for Judgements Made

With regard to the criticality safety studies that AWE is carrying out in support of the JoCO/PRS work for facility A** and for Burghfield in both cases the work is in-progress. However, in both cases, from the samples of the work that I inspected I found no cause for regulatory concern.

Conclusion of Intervention

From inspecting samples of AWE’s work on criticality safety in support of the JoCO/PRS at a nuclear materials management facility and at Burghfield, I consider that the work that has been carried out to date meets relevant good practice.  No regulatory interventions are necessary. The work is of a high technical standard and currently progressing to programme.