Welcome to McLinc’s April 2013 Newsletter
In the April Newsletter we welcome spring (finally) with the announcement of two important Community events: a celebration of Oak Ridge’s cleanup accomplishments scheduled for May 2-3; convening of the Tennessee Valley Corridor Summit in Oak Ridge on May 29-30. Please reserve time on your calendars and plan to join us at both of these important events. Thank you to Mark Whitney, Manager for the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management, for contributing an article to this months’ Newsletter. Mark brings a passion for the environmental cleanup mission and an understanding and sensitivity to the total needs of the Community to his office. Thank you, Mark, for your service. Lots of other news this month. Please read and enjoy and pass this Newsletter along to anyone who might be interested in reading it. Visit us at our websitewww.mcl-inc.com and at our laboratory in Heritage Center (ETTP). Thanks for your business and your friendship. Barry
Thanks to all who attended the annual McLinc Customer Appreciation Pancake Breakfast. The morning was filled with wonderful food and company as the McLinc crew prepared a delicious breakfast for our guests. McLinc invited ORUD to set up their “Have a Hear, Heat A Home” booth for the second consecutive year. ORUD provided valintines gifts of candy, balloons, flowers, and stuffed animals to the attendees of the breakfast. In a matter of two hours “Have a Heart, Heat A Home” was able to raise $400. All proceeds make it possible for needy families to keep their heat on during the winter months. McLinc will be hosting a Customer Appreciation Ice Cream Social, featuring homemade waffle cones, in July. Watch your e-mails for more information. We hope to see you there.
Oak Ridge Recognizes Past Accomplishments As It Looks to the Future
By: Mark Whitney, Manager for the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management On May 2-3, the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management is joining with the Oak Ridge community to host a series of special events to recognize and celebrate our program’s cleanup accomplishments. We have made great progress during the past number of years, and as we prepare to present a new strategic plan for the future, the opportunity exists now to celebrate our past. In the early 1940s, as the federal government erected fences and built massive facilities in what would become Oak Ridge, little thought was given to the environmental impacts to the area. The focus was on enriching uranium to end World War II—not the environmental legacy. Through the years, as Oak Ridge’s mission expanded into commercial uranium production and national defense, more wastes were generated, leaving the three major sites on the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge Reservation with contaminated buildings, burial grounds, and storage areas. As missions have ended and changed, many of these facilities are no longer needed. The Oak Ridge Gaseous Diffusion Plant was permanently shut down in 1987. Cleanup of the East Tennessee Technology Park has been ongoing since, and we are converting it into a private sector industrial park. The Oak Ridge National Laboratory has become one of the world’s leading institutions for scientific discovery, and the Y-12 National Security Complex has become a premier manufacturing facility dedicated to ensuring our nation’s security. Cleanup at the three sites, as well as surrounding areas, is essential to ensuring the ongoing missions in Oak Ridge. Our efforts to address years of contamination are not only restoring the environment but also enhancing Oak Ridge’s ability to attract new investment and create 21st century jobs. For the events on May 2-3, we are inviting the Oak Ridge community, the contractor community, Environmental Management leadership from Washington D.C., Environmental Protection Agency and Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation leadership from Nashville and Atlanta, and local, state, and nationally elected officials to recognize the roles each has played in advancing the cleanup mission in Oak Ridge. Everyone involved has provided a unique perspective to our program, and our events would not be complete without their participation. While many challenges remain for our program, our history suggests we are up to the task. Because of the hard work, dedication, and focus of everyone, past and present, the Oak Ridge Reservation continues to evolve and transform into a safer, cleaner site that continues performing vital missions for the Department of Energy. I hope you will join us this May as we celebrate the major cleanup achievements, honor our past, and look toward the future.
Tennessee Valley Corridor to Convene Regional Leadership in Oak Ridge
By: Barry Stephenson, president and CEO of MCLinc Whether it is supporting our school foundation, leading the ETEC board of directors or volunteering at a non-profit organization, MCLinc is continually looking for ways to work with others to make Oak Ridge, Roane County and our region a better place to live and work. One of our core beliefs at MCLinc is that success does not happen in a vacuum—this type of engagement outside of our facility is vital to our success and to the overall success of our community. I’ve seen first-hand how collaboration and communication have allowed the Oak Ridge and Knoxville area to grow and prosper, even in the most challenging economic times. As we look outside our immediate community to the larger region, we are fortunate to have an organization like the Tennessee Valley Corridor that is working to sustain the region’s existing federal missions, compete for new missions, and leverage public/private relationships for high-quality job growth. For many years, I have been actively involved in the Tennessee Valley Corridor, and when it returns to Oak Ridge this May, I believe we will once again see the invaluable benefits that occur when we convene the top leadership from academia, government and industry from Tennessee, Alabama, Virginia, Kentucky and North Carolina to discuss regional challenges and opportunities. It is this event that helps us connect the dots and find ways to work together, which leads to individual and regional accomplishments. This year’s summit will be held at Y-12’s New Hope Center on May 29-30, and it will focus on energy, environment, advanced manufacturing, workforce development, innovation and entrepreneurism. Congressman Chuck Fleischmann is hosting the event, and Senator Lamar Alexander will make keynote remarks, which are expected to update a major energy address he made at the last Summit held in Oak Ridge in 2009. Since the first TVC Summit was held in Oak Ridge in 1995, this annual event has linked the science and technology assets in the Tennessee Valley into a nationally recognized regional economic development effort. I hope you will join us at the May Summit. For more information or to register for the Tennessee Valley Corridor Summit, please visit www.TennValleyCorridor.org. To become a sponsor of the Summit, please contact Jennifer Wiggins at email@example.com or (865) 680.1457
MCLinc Contributions to ETTP Site Environmental Management (EM) Activities
Materials and Chemistry Laboratory, Inc. (MCLinc) became a commercial entity in April, 1998, at the same time that the ETTP Site mission transitioned to a new contractor, with an even greater emphasis on active remediation of contaminated structures and the impacted environment. A few years prior to commercialization, the laboratory had been designated as an Environmental Technology User Facility for the Department of Energy, a part of the User Facilities administered by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. In that role, investigators at MCLinc interfaced with technology developers in academia and the private sector to evaluate prospective emerging technologies against formulated surrogate and authentic waste streams that were identified as priorities to the DOE. This offered McLinc-partnered researchers access to “difficult” waste streams that, in most cases, could not be readily shipped to, or received by, the technology developer, due to licensing and other regulatory restrictions. The evaluation and technology demonstration performed at MCLinc provided an impartial evaluation of treatment technology against DOE needs and often provided a path forward for dealing with the “difficult” waste. As a commercial laboratory, MCLinc has continued to provide assistance to the EM mission. For example, MCLinc security-cleared consultant and laboratory support personnel, with knowledge of past Site activities, have helped K-25 Site Decontamination and Decommissioning (D&D) contractors to safely deal with the discoveries of inadequately characterized, often classified, legacy wastes and the hazards of off-normal operations events that are still occasionally encountered in work that is being performed at old, abandoned facilities. Such “findings” have included small containers of radioactive, chemically reactive and toxic, or shock-sensitive material, which needed characterization and/or safe deactivation prior to compliant disposal. The ability to carefully transfer such hazardous material to an on-site laboratory along a DOE-access (non-public) route was beneficial to maintaining secure, safe, and expedient remediation. MCLinc has teamed with many other commercial entities for waste characterization and compliance documentation by conditioning special materials originating from the DOE complex to be able to fit within their facility acceptance profiles with the ultimate result being compliant disposal of the waste. MCLinc staff has also helped Site EM perform Treatability Studies and Technology Evaluations. This has included validation of vendor-recommended treatment options and troubleshooting for Contractor self-performed operations, and formulation and preparation of surrogate material for off-site evaluations by technology vendors. McLinc continues to stay abreast of current site concerns having recently supported projects to determine cost-effective options for treatment of hexavalent chromium, safe disposal of UF6 cylinders, and identification of contents and treatment for disposal of cylinders containing unidentified contents. Recent investments in a low-level mercury laboratory, equipped with the newest instrumentation for mercury detection in both water and solid matrices will further support remediation of mercury accumulated at the Oak Ridge reservation and other EM sites.
New McLinc Employees
McLinc would like to welcome Robert White to our staff. Robert has taken the position of Controller at McLinc. Robert is a Certified Public Accountant with a Master of Accountancy from The University of Tennessee. He has many years of experience on the DOE site with companies such as Bechtel Jacobs and Lockheed Martin Energy Systems. Robert is coming to us from NFT where he worked as the Chief Financial Officer. McLInc is very excited to add such an experienced member to our staff! We would also like to welcome Diann Hall back to our staff. Diann is one of the founders of McLinc and a current stock holder in the company. Diann was a full time employee of McLinc from 1999 to 2002. After leaving the company Diann began work at Y-12 in the environmental laboratory and also worked some as a consultant for McLinc. Since Diann’s retirement from Y-12 she has begun working as a McLinc employee again. Diann brings valuable knowledge to the McLinc staff through her extensive background in Asbestos and experience in the Environmental Laboratory.
The Oak Ridge Schools Family Resource Center
The employees at McLinc were grateful for the opportunity to make another contribution to The Oak Ridge Schools Family Resource Center (FRC). Employees provided a family of three children with Easter gifts and a Kroger gift card to ensure an Easter Dinner could be prepared. These gifts were delivered to the family by Jo Bruce, director of the center and McLinc’s advocate for FRC. If you would like to learn about how you can get involved with the Family Resource Center, please call Jo Bruce at 425-3205 or Jessica Bivens at 425-9401. You may also reach Ms. Bruce through email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
MCLinc to Present Paper at American Chemical Society
McLinc will be presenting a paper at the 245th ACS National Meeting and Exposition in New Orleans, Louisiana on April 11. The paper titled “Nuclear Forensic Support at a Commercial Licensed Laboratory” highlights McLinc’s expertise in uranium chemistry and focuses on the Laboratory’s ability to characterize, by a variety of analytical techniques, known, legacy, and discovered uranium-bearing materials. Chemical “signatures” established by extensive analysis of samples with a known processing history yields information that may enable investigators to know a great deal about a material of unknown origin. McLinc’s combination of analysis equipment coupled with knowledge of uranium processing procedures is helping to build a library of information that can be utilized in such investigations. Michele Sanders, McLinc Laboratory Manager and Barry Stephenson, McLinc President and CEO, will be participating i n the ACS Meeting. Friends of Scouting For over 100 years, the Great Smoky Mountain Boy Scouts of America Council has provided youth guidance in character development, citizenship training, and personal fitness. A significant portion of their work is made possible by corporate and personal donations to the Friends of Scouti ng Campaign. McLinc was pleased to be a sponsor of the Oak Ridge / Anderson County Friends of Scouting Breakfast, which was held Thursday, April 4th, at the Riverside Event Center at the Riverside Grill in Oak Ridge. Coach Phillip Fulmer was the guest of honor and keynote speaker. This year’s program honored UT Battelle for their contributions to the Boy Scouts of America. McLinc employees who are proud Dads of Eagle Scouts include Bill Bostick, Jeff Holt, and Barry Stephenson. Please join us in supporting scouting in our community.
CASA Bluegrass and BBQ Bash
The 10th annual CASA Bluegrass and BBQ Bash was a great success. The event was held on March 2nd at the Junior Achievement – Hollingsworth Center in Clinton. Wonderful music was provided by the Ridge City Ramblers, as well as, hammer dulcimer player Allen McBride. The master of ceremonies for the night was Cindy Alpert of 106.1 The River. A full BBQ buffet dinner was provided by Texas Road house with desert from the House of Cakes. Silent and live auctions included vacation packages, fine jewelry, a handmade wooden glider, and many other pieces of interest. All proceeds from this even benefited CASA, which works to help abused or neglected children in Anderson, Blount and Scott counties who are under court protection. McLinc is a corporate sponsor of CASA.
Rotary Peace Forum
On Saturday, March 9, The Rotary Club of Oak Ridge hosted one of four World Peace Forums attended by Rotary International President, Sakuji Tonaka. He attended forums in Honolulu, Hawaii Berlin, and Hiroshima, Japan. The Oak Ridge forum is focused on Peace through Science and Technology and Peace through human understanding. Materials and Chemistry Laboratory, Inc. joined with TN Bank, the Y-12 Federal Credit Union, and Galbraith Laboratories to help sponsor this event.
MCLinc provides both consulting services and characterization analyses in three primary areas: 1. Specialty Environmental – the “specialty” category may be defined by the sample origin, its categorization as an unknown, a matrix difficulty that requires a method modification, the presence of radioactive or hazardous material in the sample or the need for an analysis for which there is no published or routinely utilized methodology. 2. Forensic Investigation – the use of trace evidence to establish sample origin or the source of a product or process failure relies heavily on the powerful fusion of the technical staff’s expertise and MCLinc’s broad array of instrumental capability, which includes four electron microscopes. 3. Process Optimization – MCLinc’s ability to build bench-scale models of chemical processes and test those models has enabled us to develop solutions in accident investigations, waste treatability studies, chemical process optimization, formulation for non-radiological surrogates for highly radioactive waste treatments, recipes for onsite groundwater treatment, materials compatibility for chemically hostile environments and improvement of manufacturing techniques in a variety of industrial processes and failure investigations.
Materials and Chemistry Laboratory, Inc.