Argonne National Laboratory
Decontamination & Decommissioning
Nuclear Engineering Division at Argonne
Nuclear Engineering is a Division of Argonne National Laboratory (Argonne), a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) laboratory managed by The University of Chicago

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Decommissioning Technologies

The Argonne National Laboratory D&D Program is an integrated effort focused on addressing all technical facets of the D&D problem. The extensive operations and project execution experience of the Argonne D&D staff, coupled with the Laboratory’s strong foundation in research and development, provides a uniquely integrated approach to identifying and overcoming the issues arising from a burgeoning D&D marketplace. Through its comprehensive field experience, Argonne has developed unique insight and understanding into the critical role technology plays in project execution and in overcoming barriers to success encountered by using new and innovative techniques for solving D&D problems.

The Technology portion of the Argonne D&D Program comprises four major areas:

  • Identification - Knowledge of and experience with the technologies and methodologies currently available for performing D&D is crucial to having a clear understanding of how best to perform D&D activities. This knowledge base is integral to determining the applications and limitations of current technologies, as well as effectively allocating limited research and development funding. By its proven abilities in information management and distribution through multiple mechanisms, Argonne serves as a conduit through which this information flows.
  • Development - If, through the identification process, there are needs that cannot be met with existing technologies or there are suitable technologies that could be used with certain modifications and improvements, Argonne’s extensive capabilities in scientific and technological problem solving can be brought to bear on the problem.
  • Demonstration - The tightly regulated and monitored environment in which the nuclear industry operates presents unique challenges for the utilization of innovative or improved technologies. To be used in this highly regimented environment, it is critical that new and innovative technologies are processed through a robust, independent, and industry accepted and recognized demonstration process. Argonne has a proven record in this area as manifested by its participation in the CP-5 Large Scale Demonstration Project.
  • Deployment - In order to ensure that the most effective technologies are utilized by the D&D user community, a vigorous technology information-sharing system is critical. A thorough understanding of the limitations of D&D technologies in the marketplace is a crucial aspect of the deployment issue. Argonne’s experience in the entire spectrum of technology deployment is invaluable to ensure that innovative technologies are deployed in the most effective manner.


In 1996, Argonne teamed with 3M, Duke Engineering & Services, ICF Kaiser, Commonwealth Edison and Florida International University to form the Strategic Alliance for Environmental Restoration.

Under the sponsorship of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), the mission of the Strategic Alliance is to select innovative, “field test ready” D&D technologies, demonstrate those technologies in a large-scale demonstration environment and compare the results against existing commercial technologies with the intent of showing that significant benefits can be achieved through the utilization of enhanced D&D technologies or verifying that existing technology practices are the most cost effective.

The D&D needs of the DOE Complex were evaluated, and the problem areas appropriate to demonstration at CP-5 were grouped into four areas:


Twenty-three technologies were demonstrated at the CP-5 Reactor as part of the DOE EM-50 funded Large Scale Demonstration Project (LSDP); a complete listing with vendor acknowledgments is provided below.
Additional information can be found in our Decommissioning Technologies Photo Gallery featuring brief descriptions and photographs of some of the technologies.


Installation and upgrades were funded by DOE’s Robotics Technology Development Program.


More information

For more information:

  • on Decommissioning Technologies demonstrated as a part of the Large Scale Demonstration Project (LSDP), please contact
  • read the DOE's Innovative Technology Summary Reports on Deactivation and Decommissioning
  • on the Chicago Pile-Five (CP-5) Decommissioning Project, see CP-5 Project

Visit the Decommissioning Technologies Photo Gallery

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Contact person

Chris Grandy
POC for D&D Operations
Dept. Manager, Engineering Development and Applications Dept.
Argonne National Laboratory
Phone: +1 630-252-9135
Fax:   +1 630-252-7577

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ARGONNE NATIONAL LABORATORY, Nuclear Engineering Division, Decontamination & Decommissioning
9700 South Cass Ave., Argonne, IL 60439-4814
A U.S. Department of Energy laboratory managed by UChicago Argonne, LLC

Last modified on December 7, 2016 11:55 AM