Senior executives from The Babcock & Wilcox Company visited Pantex today to tour the facility and meet with key leaders. Here, executives pose with “Freedom,” the Plant’s 125-pound fiberglass American Quarter Horse sculpture.
About the photo:
Left to right: B&W Senior VP, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary James Canafax, B&W Pantex General Manager John Woolery, B&W President and CEO Jim Ferland, and George Dudich, B&W Technical Services Group president.
Area middle schoolers build renewable energy vehicles
B&W Pantex sponsored its Electric Battery Car Race Saturday as part of the annual Science Bowl Competition. Nearly 30 teams from middle schools across the Texas Panhandle competed in the races, which were won by Bovina Middle School. Panhandle Junior High came in second and Dumas Junior High was second.
The two senior leaders of the House Armed Services Committee (HASC) visited the Pantex Plant Tuesday to tour the facility and deliver a message of support to the workers.
U.S. Rep. Howard P. “Buck” McKeon (R-Calif.) told an assembled group of Pantexans he was aware of the critical work done at Pantex through his role as the HASC chairman, but seeing it firsthand really made an impact.
“When I saw that weapon being put together, I was so thankful that you’re all here to do this work,” McKeon said.
McKeon traveled to Pantex with HASC vice chairman, U.S. Rep. Mac Thornberry, whose district includes the Pantex Plant. Thornberry talked about the challenging budget situation facing all levels of government and the importance of maintaining the capabilities of facilities like Pantex.
“What you do here is very, very important, and it needs to be protected,” Thornberry said.
After taking questions from several Pantexans, the two Congressmen concluded the all-hands meeting with a few final words of encouragement.
“(Pantex) is a crown jewel,” McKeon said. “You’ve kept us safe for many years, and you should be congratulated for that.”
Workers at the Pantex Plant last month finished the largest concrete pour to date on the High Explosives Pressing Facility, completing the last of the elevated soffits, which are part of the roof deck/second story of the building.
The pour marked the completion of approximately 50 percent of the construction on the 45,000 square-foot facility, which will combine high explosives operations from numerous outdated buildings into one state-of-the-art facility which will help to bolster Pantex’s status as the DOE’s High Explosives Center of Excellence for HE manufacturing.
Construction of the $65 million facility is expected to be complete next year. The construction effort is being managed by the U.S Army Corps of Engineers and the design effort/plant support is being led by B&W Pantex/CH2MHill.
Don Cook, NNSA’s deputy administrator for Defense Programs, last week spoke to Pantexans about the future mission of Pantex and the critical role the plant will play in maintaining the nation’s stockpile for decades to come. During the visit, Cook congratulated some of the 100-plus Pantexans who helped to secure the plant and conduct recovery operations during and after the Feb. 25 blizzard that dropped more than 19 inches on the Amarillo area.