Y-12 Blog

Posted: Thursday, February 8, 2018 - 6:01pm

Y‑12 craftsmen learn how to use a grease caddy for ultrasound lubrication.Y‑12 craftsmen learn how to use a grease caddy for ultrasound lubrication.

Has your air conditioning ever gone out in the middle of August? Did your dishwasher quit working when it was fully loaded from a dinner party? These types of equipment failures certainly leave us frustrated, but have you ever thought about much larger equipment failures … like the type that can delay production at a national security site for days, weeks, or months?

Enterprise Reliability and Maintainability manager Paul Durko spends a lot of time thinking about keeping Pantex and Y‑12’s equipment running so both sites can operate safely, securely, and productively. With many World War II‑era buildings and a variety of aging equipment, achieving those objectives is no small feat.

Durko’s team works with more than 530 craftspeople to complete more than 61,000 work orders each year. Just keeping up with that amount of work is a daunting task, but wanting to improve the way that work is accomplished requires a process and a special level of commitment. Fortunately, CNS has that process — preventive maintenance optimization (PMO) — and committed crafts and maintenance staff.

Maintenance strategies are evaluated through PMO, resulting in standardized tasks, which reduces maintenance errors and increases reliability. PMO has already reduced planning time by an average of 64 percent while increasing throughput by 19 percent. Durko is quick to credit the crafts as the driving force behind this success. “They are the eyes and ears of the enterprise,” he said. “Their input brings the preventive maintenance program up to date and adds value to the customer.”

Through PMO and efficiency gains, maintenance and crafts have the opportunity to implement best practices for the various maintenance tasks. “There’s a tendency to equate improved efficiency with job loss,” noted Durko. “We’re looking for efficiencies so we have the time to improve the way we provide maintenance, while also increasing the amount of preventive maintenance work completed at both sites.”
One way the crafts have driven improvement is by using ultrasound lubrication to ensure proper lubrication of bearings, which is essential to equipment reliability. This technique has been successfully piloted at both sites, and further expansion is planned.

Now ER&M wants to capitalize on those efficiency gains by using precision maintenance techniques and the resultant data to move toward condition‑based maintenance. Going back to the original, more mundane example, they want to know when to work on your air conditioner so it doesn’t go out in August.

CBM is maintenance that is performed based upon indicators from activities like surveillances, inspections, vibration monitoring, and ultrasound detection. Vibration analysis on rotating assets is the most mature predictive technology across the enterprise. In the last few years, the focus on this technology has shifted to effective use of the data provided. By analyzing this data, personnel can perform maintenance in advance of equipment failure that could injure personnel, adversely affect production, and potentially cause secondary damage to the equipment. At Y-12, the vibration program currently monitors more than 300 mission-critical assets. The program also monitors rotating assets at the Pantex High Explosives Production Facility, with revitalization and expansion planned during this fiscal year.

Predictive technology has also strengthened the effectiveness of post-work testing. Use of the vibration meter allows the craftsperson to verify that maintenance activities conducted on rotating assets did not adversely impact the reliability. The ultrasound meter has been used to improve post‑work leak checks, thus increasing the confidence in the repairs.

Durko is enthusiastic about where CBM can take the enterprise, while incorporating reliability centered maintenance‑based principles during the design phase to decrease overall maintenance cost. “Crafts and Maintenance management can evolve into a world‑class maintenance organization,” he said.

Posted: Monday, January 29, 2018 - 11:05am

Kevin Probst of the Nassau County Police Department speaks with colleagues at a customized Alarm Response Training course.Kevin Probst of the Nassau County Police Department speaks with colleagues at a customized Alarm Response Training course.

A team from Y-12 traveled to New York to conduct a customized Alarm Response Training, or cART, course for members of the Suffolk County (@SuffolkPD), Nassau County (@NCPolice), and New York City (@NYPD) police departments.

Darrell Poteet of Global Security Analysis and Training said, “Members from these agencies had previously attended our Alarm Response Training and requested a customized course that would reach more of their personnel.”

The cART training program supports NNSA’s Office of Radiological Security by helping local law enforcement agencies develop their own coordinated training programs to prepare for and prevent the theft of radiological materials. cART also supports the Office of Radiological Security’s 2020 Cities Initiative, which aims to integrate radiological response functions in the 20 most populous metropolitan areas in the U.S.

Poteet said, “Sites that attend the on-site training are allowed to bring three to four law enforcement representatives. By conducting the customized course, local police departments get the ability to train their personnel on a much larger scale.”

Posted: Wednesday, December 6, 2017 - 2:55pm

Anderson County students attending the Dream it. Do it. kick off at Roane State Community College’s Higher Education and Workforce Training Facility in Clinton.Anderson County students attending the Dream it. Do it. kick off at Roane State Community College’s Higher Education and Workforce Training Facility in Clinton.

The Anderson County Chamber of Commerce and its partners, Consolidated Nuclear Security, LLC (CNS), Anderson County Schools and Oak Ridge Schools, kicked off the third straight year of the “Dream It. Do It.” program at the Roane State Community College’s Higher Education and Workforce Training Facility in Clinton.

The program pairs middle-school students with local businesses to learn about job opportunities in advanced manufacturing.

“We’ve grown from four schools in its first year to six schools in 2017,” said Rick Meredith, head of the Anderson County Chamber of Commerce. “Dream It. Do It. is opening the eyes of area school kids about the future job opportunities in manufacturing; and they are learning in a fun way.”

CNS provides each student team with a GoPro camera to create videos highlighting area manufacturing and industrial operations. Those videos are then posted online and viewers cast a vote for their favorites. Winning team members each receive their own GoPro camera.

On hand for the kickoff were this year’s participating school teams from Clinton, Jefferson, Lake City, Norris, Norwood and Robertsville Middle Schools. Also in attendance were representatives from the participating industries, including Aisin Automotive Castings, Protomet, Techmer PM, Eagle Bend Mfg., Clayton Homes, and SL TN.

At the kickoff, the students drew out of a box to see which industry they would be representing this year. The pairings are as follows: Norwood Middle – AISIN, Clinton Middle – Techmer PM, Lake City Middle – Eagle Bend Mfg., Robertsville Middle – SL Tennessee, Jefferson Middle School – Clayton Homes, and Norris Middle School – Protomet.

Posted: Wednesday, December 6, 2017 - 2:32pm

The TRF-200 graduates.The TRF-200 graduates.

Ten members of Y‑12’s Protective Force graduated from the Central Training Facility’s Tactical Response Force 200, or TRF‑200. This is the first course held at Y-12 in recent years. The training is intense and specific; graduates prove they have the skills to execute recapture/recover and pursuit operations to support any interruption within the DOE environment.

“Graduating from this training takes dedication,” Eric Belcher, director of Y‑12 Protective Force said. “The class members worked their way through a series of tests and evaluations to participate in the course. Training involved intense physical and mental evaluations along with a requirement to demonstrate the potential to complete a 4‑week intense program. Once in the course, they endured a grueling full‑day schedule of training.”

The graduates, who are now members of the special response team, displayed marksmanship skills, battle techniques, mechanical and ballistic breaching techniques, and other defense‑related skills. They applied their skills in live‑fire exercises and force‑on‑force scenarios under day and night conditions.

This class is special; it is the first to attend training at the CTF, but it won’t be the last. The plan is to conduct one course per year. Previously, to obtain the qualification, Protective Force members traveled to the National Training Center to participate in SRT training.

Tactical Operations Manager Neal Wolfenbarger said, “The cadre at our Central Training Facility has worked tirelessly to prepare for and conduct this class.”

Teamwork isn’t new to Protective Force members, especially when coming from a military or law enforcement background.

Wolfenbarger said, “Each of these men have demonstrated the spirit of performance excellence by successfully completing the long road to becoming an SRT member. They understand the importance of teamwork, overcame adversity, made adjustments to achieve success, and most importantly, understand the critical nature of mission success.”

SRT graduate Matt Sexton said, “If one person doesn’t pull his or her weight, the mission fails. This idea is in our daily operations. We’re required as a team to be good communicators and have a commitment to a common goal; both of these are the cornerstones of teamwork.”

Another graduate, Kris Sutton, tied teamwork more directly to mission work. “You have to trust your fellow teammates to have each other’s backs. You also have to understand each shift worker’s positions to ensure mission success.”

The dedicated members of the SRT have set high standards and have a desire to protect the mission. “SRT is something I have wanted to do for a few years now,” Brandon Lambert, another graduate of the program, said. “It was a good feeling of accomplishment. It was also good to see how a group of guys from different backgrounds can come together as a team and accomplish challenging tasks.”

That teamwork mindset is something all CNS employees should have.

ProForce member and graduate Brandon Stockwell said, “Everyone must know their job and be proactive. I think everyone at the site has a sense of duty to our country and wants to be part of Y‑12’s success. I feel proud to be a part of this team and to be around others with the same motivation and drive.”

Posted: Monday, October 23, 2017 - 9:02am

Ken Harrawood, CNS’s senior director for Legacy Facilities Disposition, accepts the NA-50 award for Y-12 Excess Facility Risk Reduction from NNSA Administrator Lt. Gen. Frank Klotz (Ret.).Ken Harrawood, CNS’s senior director for Legacy Facilities Disposition, accepts the NA-50 award for Y-12 Excess Facility Risk Reduction from NNSA Administrator Lt. Gen. Frank Klotz (Ret.).

The newly designated NA-50 Excellence Awards recently were presented at Pantex by NNSA Associate Administrator for Safety, Infrastructure, and Operations James McConnell and at Y-12 by NNSA Administrator Lt. Gen. Frank Klotz (Ret.). The award recognizes teams and individuals for outstanding accomplishments involving innovation, effectiveness, teamwork, overcoming adversity, and enabling future success.

CNS President and CEO Morgan Smith commended the honorees by saying, “The work we do is unique. We play a key role in the defense of the nation and the stability of the world. We face the challenge of meeting this important mission while working in facilities that are well past their intended life. Your work has helped tackle infrastructure issues that, if left unaddressed, could have exposed a risk to employees, the mission, or the environment.”

At Pantex and Y-12, the CNS Construction team was recognized for its operations with zero recordable injuries in fiscal year 2016, and the Development and Approval team for the Administrative Support Complex (Kirk McCutcheon at Pantex, Tom Smith at Y-12) was recognized for its work to develop the foundation and business case, as well as the extensive approval process.

One other Pantex award included the Outage Process Execution team, being recognized for the high-voltage distribution system outages conducted safely in support of the NNSA mission at Pantex.

Other Y-12 awards recognized: the team replacing some 700 fire suppression system sprinkler heads in Building 9204-2, the team that reroofed three Manhattan Project–era buildings as part of the Excess Facilities Disposition Program Roof Asset Management Program Risk Reduction project, the team that repaired the concrete beam in Building 9204-2, and the team that pursued multiple direct- and indirect-funded projects to reduce risks posed by excess facilities.