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The National Nuclear Security Administration has announced that it recently completed two milestones toward production of early plutonium oxide feedstock for its Mixed Oxide Fuel Fabrication Facility.
In its second year of production, NNSA exceeded the FY 2012 goal of 200 kilograms of plutonium oxide production by disassembling nuclear weapons pits and converting them into plutonium oxide at Los Alamos National Laboratory.
NNSA also initiated operations at H-Canyon and HB-Line at the Savannah River Site to begin plutonium oxide production. The oxide production at both LANL and SRS provides the initial feedstock for the MOX facility and demonstrates the first steps towards permanent plutonium disposition.
“The progress achieved at LANL and SRS in support of plutonium disposition demonstrates the benefits of utilizing existing facilities in support of NNSA’s efforts to eliminate surplus weapons plutonium,” said NNSA Administrator Thomas D’Agostino. “Feedstock for the MOX facility represents a critical component of the U.S. plutonium disposition strategy and will enable the U.S. to meet international nonproliferation commitments while advancing President Obama’s goal of permanently reducing the number of nuclear weapons across the globe.”
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