Client: BNFL/ University of Manchester
The Universities Research Reactor was the first nuclear licensed site in the UK to be delicensed and released for unrestricted use. The reactor, which had been licensed under The Nuclear Installations Act (NIA) and had first gone critical in July 1964, served the research endeavours of the Universities of Liverpool and Manchester until closure in 1991. BNFL were awarded the contract to decommission the reactor.
Once the Reactor Complex buildings had been decommissioned, Bagnall Demolition undertook the asbestos removal, soft strip and demolition of the reactor complex. At every stage of the 3-month project, high sensitivity monitoring systems were used, including the final confirmatory measurements on the lorry loads of debris leaving the site. A particular challenge of the site was the removal of deep foundations – up to 3 meters thick.
Once Bagnall had completed the complex demolition, and debris was removed from the site, a final survey was carried out to make a case for meeting the “no danger” delicensing criteria of the NIA. Direct measurement and analytical techniques were used to evaluate both the residual external and internal radiological hazards, at levels appropriate to the “no danger” criteria. The site was subsequently released from its Nuclear Site License.