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Mining Operations Support and Infrastructure Available to Researchers


To the extent that the prime mission of waste disposal at WIPP is not compromised, the facilities and equipment can be used to lower the cost of creating customized cavities and conducting research at WIPP.

This Marietta drum miner can mine up to 875 tons/shift.  With a 3.5m wide cutting head, openings 4m x 8m can be advanced at a rate of about 15m per shift.  To the extent that the prime mission of waste disposal at WIPP is not compromised, the facilities and equipment can be used to lower the cost of creating customized cavities and conducting research at WIPP.  Current estimates to create custom cavities indicate about $25/ton, with less for larger-volume cavities.  This includes bulkheads for ventilation control, lighting, and power distribution.  Actual costs will depend to a large extent on total volume and configuration complexity.  The following lists mine operations and surface support infrastructure available to researchers:

Hoist Operations Engineering Support Meeting Rooms
Electrical Services Warehouse/Receiving Support Cafeteria
Mine Rescue & Fire Protection Surface & U/G Shops Showers & Lockers
Ground Control & Inspection 5-40 ton forklifts Analytical Services (Rad + chem)
Muck Removal & Disposal IH & Waste Management Services Guard & Security Services
Ventilation Services Personnel Carts U/G & Surface LAN - 10BaseT
Liquid Nitrogen 24-Strand Fiber Optic to U/G 3 Phase - 480VAC Power

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