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99-82

For Release: October 27, 1999

Sally V. Harrington
NASA Glenn Research Center
(BUS: 216-433-2037)

NASA Glenn's Plum Brook Station to Host Community Information Session on Decommissioning Closed Reactor Facility

The public is invited to learn more about the decommissioning of the closed Reactor Facility at NASA Glenn Research Center's Plum Brook Station during a Community Information Session to be held on Wednesday, November 3, from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Firelands College Student Lounge (located in the West Building) in Huron, OH.

"We want to share our plans for safely decommissioning the closed Reactor Facility," said Glenn's Decommissioning Project Manager Tim Polich. "Our aim is to create a comfortable, informal atmosphere where we can share this information and respond to any questions or concerns."

Attendees will be invited to browse through a series of displays, which illustrate the decommissioning process in detail. Glenn and Plum Brook staff will be on hand to guide visitors through the display, discuss the process, provide additional information and answer community members' questions.

According to Plum Brook Station General Manager and long-time Sandusky resident, Bob Kozar, this event is part of NASA's ongoing efforts to provide public access to information about the site. "If you are unable to attend our Open House and Tour on Saturday, October 30, the Community Information Session is another way for us to share information just on the decommissioning," he said.

The closed Reactor Facility has been in safe, dry and protected storage, held under a 'Possess But Do Not Operate' license agreement with the NRC, since operations were suspended and the fuel was safely removed in 1973. The facility contains a 60-megawatt nuclear reactor and a 100-kilowatt mockup reactor that were used to study the effects of radiation on materials used in space flight, from 1962 to 1973.

"Our goal was to pick the safest and most thorough alternative," said Polich. "We'll be dismantling the facility parts, decontaminating and removing equipment, and safely transporting the material to a licensed disposal facility."

Since 1958, NASA Glenn Research Center has used the world-class aerospace testing facilities at Plum Brook Station to test highly specialized space-bound hardware used in the Titan IV, the Mars Pathfinder Air Bag Landing System, the International Space Station and numerous other cutting edge technologies.

Firelands College is located just south of Route 2 at the Rye Beach Exit. For further information, call(216) 433-8777 in the Cleveland area or (419) 621-3371 in the Sandusky area.

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