The Naval Reactors Facility (NRF) was established in the early 1950s to support the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program by carrying out assigned testing, examination, and spent fuel management activities. The facility is located on the Idaho National Laboratory (INL), approximately 50 miles west of Idaho Falls. The locations’s primary functions are to receive, examine, and prepare Naval spent nuclear fuel for storage and prepare and examine irradiated test specimen assemblies. The information derived from the examinations provides engineering data on nuclear reactor environments, material behavior, and design performance. The data is used to confirm predictions of fuel performance, develop new technology, and to improve the cost effectiveness of reactor designs.
Until 1995, NRF also had the mission to operate prototype reactors for Navy training and testing purposes. The prototypes were used to train Naval officers and enlisted personnel to operate the propulsion plants of nuclear-powered ships. Nearly 40,000 Navy personnel received training. The overall responsibility to train Naval officers and enlisted personnel has been transferred to other NNPP support sites. The NRF prototype facilities have been shutdown and are no longer used for testing and training.
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