Waste Isolation Pilot Plant Roof Hazard Rating System

Designing a roof hazard rate system for the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant.

Carlsbad, New Mexico
Nuclear Waste Partnership

RESPEC engineers have developed a roof hazard rating system for the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP), which is the Department of Energy facility used for permanent disposal of transuranic nuclear waste. WIPP has challenging ground conditions where ground-support designs vary and must be replaced often. As a permanent nuclear waste repository, the ground-support design and performance are incredibly important to safely maintaining access to the facility. The roof hazard rating system incorporates geomechanical, geological, and bore-scope observations as well as and rock-mechanics instrumentation data to quantitively identify when ground support needs to be installed, when existing support needs to be replaced, when inspection frequency needs to be increased, or when access should be restricted. The roof hazard rating system has been implemented, and RESPEC continues to work with on-site personnel to refine and improve the system.