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ITRC Documents Associated with this Topic

The Unexploded Ordnance (UXO) training courses address innovative UXO characterization and geophysical prove-out technologies, as well as methods and management of munitions response projects.

Geophysical Classification for Munitions Response

For decades, the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) has produced and used military munitions for live-fire testing and training to prepare the U.S. military for combat operations. As a result, unexploded ordnance (UXO) and discarded military munitions may be present at over 5,200 former ranges and former munitions operating facilities throughout the United States. With the traditional technique to identify munitions for removal at these sites, DOD and its contractors have used various types of detection instruments to simply detect buried metal objects then excavation and examination of most of the detected items, to determine whether or not they are military munitions. Even highly trained UXO-qualified personnel typically excavate hundreds of metal items for each one munition recovered. Nearly half of these sites require a munitions response, at an estimated cost to complete of $14 billion and with a completion date of 2100. To improve the efficiency of munitions response, DOD’s Environmental Security Technology Certification Program and its research partners in academia and industry have developed a new approach: geophysical classification. Geophysical classification is the process of using advanced data to make principled decisions as to whether buried metal objects are potentially hazardous munitions (that is targets of interest) that should be excavated, or items such as metal clutter and debris (non-targets of interest) that can be left in the ground.

ITRC’s Geophysical Classification for Munitions Response (GCMR-2, 2015) guidance and this training class explain the process of geophysical classification, describe its benefits and limitations, and discuss the information and data needed by regulators to monitor and evaluate the use of the technology. This document and training also emphasize using a systematic planning process to develop data acquisition and decision strategies at the outset of a munitions response effort, as well as quality considerations throughout the project. Stakeholder issues that are unique to munitions response are also discussed. After this training class, participants will:

An audience who understand current munitions response tools and procedures (for example, geophysical surveys, sensors, data analysis) will benefit most from this document and training. For federal and state environmental regulators, scientists, and engineers, as well as contractors, munitions response managers, technical staff, geophysicists, and stakeholders, this document explains how geophysical classification can be used in munitions response. Stakeholders with an interest in a particular munitions response site (MRS) at which classification has been or may be proposed will also benefit from this document and training.

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Geophysical Prove-Outs for Munitions Response Projects

Geophysical systems are used to detect surface and subsurface anomalies (i.e., unexploded ordnance [UXO] and/or discarded military munitions) during geophysical surveys of munitions response sites. These systems are tested, evaluated, and demonstrated by a site-specific geophysical prove-out (GPO). Information collected during the implementation of the prove-out is analyzed and used to select or confirm the selection of a geophysical system that can meet the performance requirements established for the geophysical survey.

This training introduces the purpose and scope of GPOs; provides examples of goals and objectives associated with GPOs; and presents detailed information needed to evaluate the design, construction, implementation, and reporting of GPOs. The course is based on ITRC's Geophysical Prove-Outs for Munitions Response Projects (UXO-3, 2004). In addition to the material covered in the training, this document provides additional background information on geophysical surveys for readers who want to review the broader topic of geophysical surveys, equipment, processes, and survey methodology to gain a greater understanding of the context of GPOs in the munitions response process.

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Munitions Response Historical Record Review

The proper collection, analysis, and documentation of a historical records review for a munitions response (MR) provide the basis for the MR site investigation and remediation process. Because the historical review is the first step in evaluating hazards resulting from military activities at project sites, national, state, and local interest has increasingly focused on this review. To evaluate the adequacy of the review performed on a project site, regulators must understand the various processes involved in preparing a historical review because historical evaluations can vary greatly from site to site.

This training introduces state regulators, environmental consultants, site owners, and community stakeholders to Munitions Response Historical Record Review (UXO-2, 2003), created by ITRC's Unexploded Ordnance Team to assist reviewers in assessing the adequacy of an MRHRR review of property potentially impacted by the use of military munitions. The course teaches the purpose, content, and terminology of munitions historical research; provides a uniform technical approach and useful tools for reviewing an MRHRR document independent of regulatory framework or authorities; and communicates state regulator expectations to those initiating, planning, and executing an MRHRR document.

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Quality Considerations for Munitions Response Projects

This 2010 training and corresponding guidance document (UXO-5, 2008) have not been amended since publication. Visit this 2019 on-demand training video that provides an introductory overview of ITRC’s Quality Considerations for Multiple Aspects of Munitions Response Sites (QCMR-1, 2018) guidance document with updated information on this topic.

This training introduces state regulators, environmental consultants, site owners, and community stakeholders to Quality Considerations for Munitions Response Projects (UXO-5, 2008), created by the ITRC's Unexploded Ordnance Team. In this document, quality is defined as “conformance to requirements.” To manage quality, the quality requirements of the project must first be understood. Requirements must be precisely stated and clearly understood by everyone involved. A plan is then put in place to meet those requirements.

The UXO Team emphasizes taking a whole-system approach to designing, planning, and managing a munitions response (MR) project to optimize quality. Whole-system design means optimizing not just parts but the entire system (in this case the MR). Practically speaking, the UXO Team views an MR project as a system made of processes, sub-processes, and tasks. Therefore, a process approach to planning and managing MR projects is recommended.

An MR plan properly developed using the process approach will contain quality control (QC) and quality assurance (QA) activities that need to be performed.   Through the proper application of a process approach to plan and manage an MR project, the MR project should produce results of verifiable quality with sufficient QA and QC documentation for defensible decision making.

The document concludes with some real-world examples of how QA/QC planning and process control throughout an MR project can affect the results of the MR project, particularly how attention to quality during MR processes can influence follow-on processes and the project's final outcome.

This training course is intended for an intermediate audience and assumes a basic understanding of specialized processes associated with MR projects. Background information on some of the topics can be found in Munitions Response Historical Records Review (UXO-2, 2003), Geophysical Prove-Outs for Munitions Response Projects (UXO-3, 2004), Survey of Munitions Response Technologies (UXO-4, 2006) and their associated Internet-based training courses.

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Site Investigation and Remediation for Munitions Response Projects

The Department of Defense (DOD) is currently working on an inventory of former ranges with potential for munitions contamination. There are an estimated 2,000 munitions-contaminated sites located in all 50 states and territories that may affect more than 10 million acres. State and tribal regulatory officials and community stakeholders are routinely required to evaluate DOD cleanup strategies with little, if any, environmentally oriented munitions response training or guidance. State regulators are increasingly being charged with oversight responsibility for munitions response cleanup projects on other than operational ranges, such as formerly used defense sites (FUDS) and base realignment and closure (BRAC) sites. In addition, DOD project managers and industry will benefit from a greater understanding of state regulator expectations.

ITRC's Unexploded Ordnance Team has developed this Internet-based training on the site investigation and site remediation process for munitions response sites on nonoperational ranges. This training provides an introduction and overview of the processes, tools, and techniques used in investigation and remediation. These concepts are illustrated using an example munitions response site. During the course of the training, major steps in each process are identified and key regulatory considerations discussed. This training also identifies additional sources for more detailed information on key aspects of investigation and remediation. State regulators and others who need to understand the general processes involved in these critical aspects of the munitions response process will benefit from this training.

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Survey of Munitions Response Technologies

This training introduces state regulators, environmental consultants, site owners, and community stakeholders to Survey of Munitions Response Technologies (UXO-4, 2006), created by the ITRC's Unexploded Ordnance Team in partnership with the Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP) and the Environmental Security Technology Certification Program (ESTCP). The document provides an overview of the current status of commercially-available technologies in common usage for munitions response actions, and, where possible, assess and quantify their performance capabilities. The document includes detailed findings from three separate surveys: (1) an assessment of technology implementation prevalence, (2) an evaluation of Geophysical Prove-Out (GPO) characteristics, and (3) an analysis of technology performance based on GPO and standardized test site results. The document also provides background information about technologies used in munitions response actions, as well as information about advanced technologies.

This training course is intended for an intermediate to advanced audience and assumes an understanding of technologies and phases of munitions response. Background information on some of the topics can be found in Munitions Response Historical Records Review (UXO-2, 2003) and Geophysical Prove-Outs for Munitions Response Projects (UXO-3, 2004), and their associated Internet-based training courses (described above). This training course focuses on the major take-home conclusions of the Survey of Munitions Response Technologies (UXO-4, 2006) and provides an understanding of the performance capabilities of available technologies under real-world site conditions.

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