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 Entered dateSiteRegionReactor typeEvent description
ENS 5374720 November 2018 15:26:00Texas A&M UniversityNRC Region 4The following information was received via e-mail from the State of Texas: On November 20, 2018, the licensee reported that a Liquid Scintillation Counter (LSC) (LKB -WALLAC 1410), potentially containing an internal source and also H-3/C-14 standards, was surplused on November 8, 2018. Surplus staff informed that the unit had gone to metal recycling. On November 19, 2018, radiation safety retrieved broken glass standards (approx. 100,000 dpm each vial, November 1987) from metal recycling (Madison Metals in Bryan TX). This particular model WALLAC 1410 was known to contain approximately 12 microCi Eu-152. The activity currently could be as low as 2.45 microCi. Neither the source nor shielding was found. A contamination survey was completed with probes and the wipes were counted in an LSC, and nothing was found over background. The metal recycling center is closed for the holidays and no one is expected to receive an exposure. More information will be forwarded once it is received. The investigation is ongoing. Texas Incident Number: I-9639 THIS MATERIAL EVENT CONTAINS A "LESS THAN CAT 3" LEVEL OF RADIOACTIVE MATERIAL Sources that are "Less than IAEA Category 3 sources," are either sources that are very unlikely to cause permanent injury to individuals or contain a very small amount of radioactive material that would not cause any permanent injury. Some of these sources, such as moisture density gauges or thickness gauges that are Category 4, the amount of unshielded radioactive material, if not safely managed or securely protected, could possibly - although it is unlikely - temporarily injure someone who handled it or were otherwise in contact with it, or who were close to it for a period of many weeks. For additional information go to http://www-pub.iaea.org/MTCD/publications/PDF/Pub1227_web.pdf
ENS 5150830 October 2015 13:53:00Texas A&M UniversityNRC Region 0

At 1250 CDT, a Notification of Unusual Event was declared at the Texas A&M Nuclear Science Center due to a tornado warning on the Texas A&M Campus. The reactor was secured and Science Center staff were evacuated to their designated tornado shelter in the facility. There is no risk to public health and safety. The tornado warning is in effect until 1345 CDT.

  • * * UPDATE FROM JERRY NEWHOUSE TO HOWIE CROUCH AT 1735 EDT ON 10/30/15 * * *

At 1342 CDT, the tornado warning was terminated. The licensee conducted a facility walkdown and did not observe any damage to the facility. At 1400 CDT, the Notification of Unusual Event was terminated. The licensee notified their NRC Project Manager (Hardesty). Notified NRR (Reed), NRR EO (Howe), IRD (Gott), DHS SWO, FEMA Ops, DHS NICC, Nuclear SSA (email) and FEMA Watch Center (email).

ENS 5030925 July 2014 13:24:00Texas A&M UniversityNRC Region 4This morning around 9:45 a.m. (CDT), a reportable occurrence under Section 1.28.f of the NSC (Nuclear Science Center) Technical Specifications was documented at the Texas A&M University Nuclear Science Center (NRC License No. R-83). The incident involved leaving the control room unstaffed by a licensed operator (Section 6.1.3.a.2 of the NSC Technical Specifications) for approximately 2.5 minutes while the 1 MW TRlGA reactor was operating at full power. The text below presents a brief description of the event: On the morning of July 25, 2014, during steady state operation at 1 MW (full power), Reactor Operator (RO) trainee (Deleted) was in the control room, along with a Senior Reactor Operator on Duty (SRO) (Deleted) and electronic technician (Deleted). Senior Reactor Operator (Deleted) and Reactor Operator (RO) (Deleted) were signed in as the operators on duty during the duration of the incident. Duty SRO and RO were elsewhere in the facility performing Operations tasks, and RO (Licensed) (Deleted) had remained in the Control Room to fulfill the requirement set forth in TS (Staffing) 6.1.3.a.2. At approximately 0948, NSC Radiation Safety Officer (RSO) (Deleted) entered the control room and requested the use of RO (Deleted) key to access a building on site. RO offered to open the building and left (control room) leaving RO trainee and electronic technician alone in the control room. At 0950, RO trainee noted that there was no licensed reactor operator in the control room. RO Trainee paged RO over the intercom and shutdown the reactor via manual SCRAM. Manager of Reactor Operations (also SRO) heard the reactor SCRAM from his office above the control room and went to the control room to investigate. (Duty) SRO was notified and immediately returned to the control room. It was determined by SROs that during the 2.5 minutes that RO was absent from the control room, the requirements outlined in Technical Specification 6.1.3.a.2 were not fulfilled. NSC Director was informed of the incident and NSC Form 590 (Unscheduled Scram Recovery Form) was filled out after the unscheduled shutdown. Manager of Reactor Operations authorized the restart of the reactor. NSC Director began implementation of Reportable Occurrence reporting procedures according to Technical Specification 1.28.f. Licensee is initiating an internal review to identify and correct any practices and/or procedures that may have systematically contributed to the environment that created this situation. Other corrective actions include the internal suspension of one reactor operator's license privileges pending satisfactory retraining. The unit response during and after the scram was normal.
ENS 4903315 May 2013 11:03:00Texas A&M UniversityNRC Region 4This preliminary event report is in compliance with Technical Specification 6.6.2 Special Reports confirming in writing the initial report made by telephone to the USNRC Operations Center. During reactor shutdown after normal steady state operation on May 14, 2013 at 2209 CDT, shim safety 1 jammed at 30% withdrawn (70% inserted). Operators lowered the remaining rods with no other issues and after determining the reactor was shut down at 2250 CDT, operators began investigating the cause of the jam. The shutdown margin in this configuration was determined to be $2.91 (negative reactivity) with shim safety 1 jammed at 30%. The Technical Specification requirement for shutdown margin is $0.25 (negative reactivity) which meant the reactor was well within acceptable limits for shutdown. The reactor was determined to be in a safe shutdown state. During inspection a rope that was attached to an experiment was found to be caught inside the Control Rod Drive Mechanism (CRDM) for shim safety 1 about 10 feet from the surface of the pool. This caused a jam in the drive mechanism not allowing the rod to go below 29% and above 32%. A fuel handling team was assembled at 0945 CDT on 5/15/13 in order to remove the control rod assembly for shim safety 1. The rope connecting the experiment to the CRDM was cut in order to allow proper removal of the CRDM. The CRDM was successfully removed and the piece of rope caught inside the drive was removed. After further inspection of the CRDM no other issues were found and it was reinstalled into its normal position. Operability and scram time tests were performed and completed satisfactory at 1130 CDT. The fuel handling team was disbanded at 1137 CDT and the reactor was determined to be operational. At no point during this event was there any danger to the general public or Nuclear Science Center personnel.
ENS 4686219 May 2011 16:40:00Texas A&M UniversityNRC Region 4On May 19, 2011, the Agency (State of Texas) received notification from Texas A & M University's Radiation Safety Officer (RSO) that while removing all tritium exit signs (TES) from a dormitory prior to its demolition, they noted that a TES was missing. The RSO could not provide any additional information at this time. Additional information will be provided as it is received. Texas Event Number: I-8853 THIS MATERIAL EVENT CONTAINS A "LESS THAN CAT 3" LEVEL OF RADIOACTIVE MATERIAL Sources that are "Less than IAEA Category 3 sources," are either sources that are very unlikely to cause permanent injury to individuals or contain a very small amount of radioactive material that would not cause any permanent injury. Some of these sources, such as moisture density gauges or thickness gauges that are Category 4, the amount of unshielded radioactive material, if not safely managed or securely protected, could possibly - although it is unlikely - temporarily injure someone who handled it or were otherwise in contact with it, or who were close to it for a period of many weeks. For additional information go to http://www-pub.iaea.org/MTCD/publications/PDF/Pub1227_web.pdf This source is not amongst those sources or devices identified by the IAEA Code of Conduct for the Safety & Security of Radioactive Sources to be of concern from a radiological standpoint. Therefore is it being categorized as a less than Category 3 source.
ENS 4242415 March 2006 12:07:00Texas A&M UniversityNRC Region 4The licensee reported that an employee at the Texas A&M Nuclear Science Center received 75,800 mREM to the extremities during the month of January 2006. Furthermore, the licensee reported that the individual also received 37,540 mREM to the extremities during the month of February 2006. The licensee reported that the employee was involved in neutron activation analysis work involving contact lenses and that all ALARA procedures were strictly enforced. The licensee stated that there were no changes in general radiation areas levels or processes which would result in an unanalyzed increase in radiation levels. The licensee's investigation is on-going.
ENS 4127521 December 2004 14:47:00Texas A&M UniversityNRC Region 4A small grass fire started near Texas A&M Gamma Shack and headed away from the Gamma Shack and away from Texas A&M TRIGA Reactor Confinement building (located 100 yards away from the fire). The grass fire did not threaten the Gamma Shack or the Reactor Confinement building. Licensee entered an unusual event per Standard Operating Procedure Section 9, Procedure D.1 (major fire - major fire is a fire that cannot not be extinguished with one fire extinguisher). The reactor was scrammed at 1249 CST and all 5 rods fully inserted into the core (reactor was at 1000 KW when it was scrammed). Local Fire Department and local police responded. Fire Department extinguished the fire. No damage to the Gamma Shack. Gamma Shack is used to store cesium-137 and cobalt-60 calibration sources (sources were stored down in their respective wells). Licensee exited the Unusual Event at 1347 CST after the fire was extinguished by the local fire department. The TRIGA reactor will be restarted later this afternoon. No releases or injuries due to the fire.
ENS 403775 December 2003 18:52:00Texas A&M UniversityNRC Region 4The following is taken from a facsimile received from Texas Department of Health (TDH), Bureau of Radiation Control: Event Description: A 30 microcurie cesium-137 source located in a scintillation counter was found with 430,000 cpm counts on a swab leak test conducted by a serviceman. No contamination was found outside the source assembly. Texas Incident No. I-8024 The Licensee's report to TDH was also faxed to the NRC and is identified, in part, below: On December 3, 2003, the Radiological Safety Officer at Texas A&M University (TAMU) was notified by a service representative of Beckman Coulter that a Cs-137 source contained within a liquid scintillation counter was leaking. After obtaining information from the service representative, the RSO then made a telephone notification to the Texas Department of Health-Bureau of Radiation Control, informing Ms. Helen Watkins of the situation. This letter is a written notification of the leaking sealed source, in accordance with TAC 289.202 (ddd). The following information identifies the liquid scintillation counter and specifies of the source: Location: Chemistry Bldg., Room 2516 Manufacturer: Beckman Model: LS 6000 SE S/N: 7060437 Source: Cs-137 Activity: 30 uCi (microcuries) The device user, a professor at TAMU, noticed that the device was not operating properly and contacted Beckman for service. The service representatives performed diagnostics on the device including a smear (cotton swab) of the plastic sphere source. The swab was counted with a result of approximately 430,000 cpm (counts per minute). No parts have been removed from the device, but the intention is to replace the source, source housing, and source elevator. These components will then be returned to Beckman. Repair parts have been ordered. The device has been removed from service with signage indicating 'No Usage' and 'Contact Radiological Safety.' In addition, Environmental Health and Safety Department (EHSD) personnel performed contamination surveys on the device, the service representatives, and within the room. No contamination was detected.