Bergeron, Kenneth D.: Tritium on Ice: The Dangerous New
Alliance of Nuclear Weapons and Nuclear Power. MIT Press, 2004 -
246 s. 'In December 1998, Energy Secretary Bill Richardson
announced that the U.S. planned to begin producing tritium for its
nuclear weapons in commercial nuclear power plants. This decision
overturned a fifty-year policy of keeping civilian and military
nuclear production processes separate. Tritium, a radioactive form
of hydrogen, is needed to turn A-bombs into H-bombs, and the
commercial nuclear power plants that are to be modified to produce
tritium are called ice condensers'
CRS: The Helium-3 Shortage: Supply, Demand, and Options for Congress. / : Dana A. Shea, Daniel Morgan, 2010.
By far the most common source of helium-3 in the United States is the U.S. nuclear weapons program, of which it is a byproduct. The federal government produces tritium for use in nuclear warheads. Tritium decays into helium-3. This means that the tritium needs of the nuclear weapons program, not demand for helium-3 itself, determine the amount of helium-3 produced.
Doney, Scott C.; Williams, P (1992). "Bomb Tritium in the Deep North Atlantic". Oceanography 5: 169–170.
NLM Hazardous Substances Databank – Tritium, Radioactive - http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/download.txt
Oversight hearing on tritium production : hearing before the Subcommittee on Energy and Power of the Committee on Commerce, House of Representatives, One Hundred Fourth Congress, first session, November 15, 1995 (1996).
Pinellas Plant - Site Description / Marquis P. Orr, Paul J. Demopoulos, and Brian P. Gleckler.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 2011. - 41 s.
Review of Risks from Tritium. Report of the independent Advisory Group on Ionising Radiation on behalf of the Health Protection Agency, 2007 - ISBN: 978-0-85951-610-5
Tritium And Enriched Uranium Management Plan Through 2060 : Report to Congress. / : DOE, 2015.
Most of these requirements are supplied from the United States' HEU stockpile. The U.S. ceased enriching uranium for use in nuclear weapons in 1964 and stopped all HEU production in 1992. The stockpile includes HEU in weapons and components, working inventory, material in secure storage, unusable HEU in spent nuclear fuel (SNF), or other forms that are difficult and/or costly to recover. To meet the diverse needs listed above, the Department is repurposing or down-blending HEU from dismantled weapons that were declared excess to defense needs by the President in 1994 and 2005. This report outlines the Department's plans and options for managing the diminishing HEU stockpile to continue to meet those needs in the future.
United States to down-blend HEU for tritium production. / : International Panel on Fissile Materials, October 1, 2018.
The United States will down-blend 20.2 tons of highly-enriched uranium to use the resulting LEU (Low- enriched uranium, uranium that is enriched but to less than 20% U-235) in reactors of the Tennessee Valley Authority that produce tritium for the U.S. nuclear weapon program. The cost of the six-year contract, awarded to Nuclear Fuel Services, a subsidiary of BWX Technology, is $505 million, the work is expected to begin in 2019. According to the current plans (as outlined in the DoE FY2019 budget request, p. 461) the United States will complete down-blending of 162 MT of surplus HEU in FY2019; 159.7 tons had been down-blended already. The 20.2 tons of HEU will not come from the surplus HEU, however, since the production of tritium requires unobligated HEU. It is not clear, however, why the down-blending is necessary as DOE's 2015 report to Congress, Tritium and Enriched Uranium Management Plan Through 2060 identified sources of enough LEU to fuel the Tennessee Valley Authority reactors until about 2040. The DoE also considers developing centrifuge technology that could be used to produce unobligated LEU. Down-blending of the existing HEU stock, however, would be a viable alternative to building a new enrichment plant.