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Sunday, September 24, 2017

Another crit safety failure....

LANL has another failure in criticality safety. Article looks as if the workers made not just one but two attempts to cover up the mistake instead of reporting the lapse. No wonder NNSA is fed up with LANS!

https://www.abqjournal.com/1067835/report-criticality-event-occured-at-lanl-plutonium-facility.html

7 comments:

Anonymous said...


Wow, the issue is that if LANL cannot do pits than why have LANL? Of course who else could do pits and why would they do them any better than LANL. One thing we now for sure is that Charlie McMillin was NOT fired, he left when he decided he wanted to leave and he was double plus good.

Anonymous said...

If there was slim chance remaining for any of the current LANS partners to be part of a team to continue operating LANL, then this latest mistake cleared up for NNSA to make a complete change and bring in new management.

Anonymous said...


Some news

There is something on NNSA site that they are not going to budge on the fee amount being at 30 million. So that is a big disappointment for the county. It also increases that odds of more service oriented operators rather than the profit raiders. I have also heard something about Leidos being interested.

U Texas is also ramping up for a a bid.

http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/UT-System-prepares-Los-Alamos-bid-to-manage-U-S-12221340.php

The University of Texas System is pursuing what would be its biggest out-of-state contract in history as it prepares a bid to manage the Los Alamos National Laboratory, the facility responsible for the safety and reliability of the country's nuclear weapons.


Of course they have to get quotes from the usual crowd. Mello has a slight amount of credibility but why on earth would they ask a phony hack like Glen Walp? In any case U Texas would have also FIRED that guy. They could have at least mentioned that he was FIRED from LANL to give readers a heads up on what they are dealing with. Maybe Walp wants Walden University to manage the lab.

"Two Los Alamos observers who have criticized historical operations said the UT System has a fair chance to earn the facility's contract. Many entities that have shown interest in the facility are corporate, and the UT System as a manager could convey prestige, they said.

Neither expected UT to be able to fully solve the facility's problems, though.

Challenges at Los Alamos stem from its remote geographical location, mission, corporate influence and culture of secrecy, Mello said.

The reputational challenge, he said, "has roots deeper than any change of management."

Corporate influence within a management entity can create a culture too focused on profits, said Glenn Walp, a former lab investigator who uncovered millions of dollars of missing equipment and financial abuses. But it would be very difficult for a university to manage facility and production operations without corporate involvement, he said."

Anonymous said...

LANL has a rich history of criticality bravado, of course. It seems a foregone conclusion that the new LLC will not have any of the current partners, and will probably be focused on by-the-book procedures or you'll get fired. At least the LLC that manages production, it's still possible that production and some other functions will be managed separately from the science part of the lab.

Anonymous said...

This latest screwup might be the end of the road in New Mexico for LANS, its parent groups, and the whole gang of upper level management now in place. There was an updated article in the Abq Journal this morning that highlights the point that LANL has not made any pits in some time, and that the expected ramp up rate in manufacturing is steep. The country needs to have a reliable operator in place for the mission, and the UC-led LLC has failed, once again, to deliver on this mission.

Anonymous said...

With this latest failure on Webster's watch and square in his area of responsibility, it will be interesting to see if UC sticks with him as their director in the competition or if they dump him and go with someone else.

Anonymous said...

Like who? Terry, Craig....

I do not see a big pool right now...

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