AIKEN, S.C. (January 27, 2022) -U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm recently presented Secretary of Energy Achievement Awards to the team responsible for the safe and successful completion of a multi-year campaign to support global nuclear security goals by transporting highly enriched uranium (HEU) liquid to the Savannah River Site (SRS) from Canada for processing. Two Savannah River Site (SRS) employees were also recognized for the Savannah River Tritium Enterprise’s (SRTE) role on the W76-2 Modification Team, supporting the nation’s nuclear deterrent.
The Secretary of Energy Achievement Awards honor groups or teams of DOE employees and contractors who accomplish significant achievements on behalf of the Department, demonstrating cooperation and teamwork in attaining their goals.
During a virtual award ceremony held on January 11, 2022, Secretary Granholm congratulated the group, saying “Not only did these awardees get the job done, they did it as a team. It is a privilege to call you colleagues.”
The Target Residue Material (TRM) campaign, completed in 2020, involved transporting HEU from the Chalk River Laboratories in Canada to the SRS’s H Canyon for processing. This achievement marked the first time that irradiated HEU liquid was shipped internationally to the U.S. The campaign was coordinated among more than a dozen organizations in Canada and the U.S., including multiple federal, state and tribal partners, and involved 115 total truck shipments covering almost 150,000 miles.
The U.S. team worked collaboratively with Canadian partners to overcome obstacles presented by the scope and complexity of the mission in order to facilitate the safe and secure packaging and transport of the TRM. This effort has advanced U.S. and global goals on nuclear security and contributed to a significant reduction in worldwide HEU holdings.
Members of the TRM team that received this honor include:
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In addition to the TRM Team, the W76-2 Team was honored for its “relentless dedication” in developing a modification of an existing warhead to provide a low-yield, sea-launched ballistic missile warhead capability. This modification helps preserve credible deterrence against regional aggression. Weapon Program Engineers Don Zecha and Scott McGee were honored as representatives of SRTE’s contribution, which was to supply the gas transfer system used in the modification.
Under Secretary for Nuclear Security and National Nuclear Security Administration Administrator Jill Hruby echoed Granholm’s praise. “I am awed by the collective contributions to the department and our nation, and I can’t thank all of you enough for your dedication and your teamwork,” she said.