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Boeing Company, Rocketdyne Propulsion and Power, Santa Susana Field Laboratory Activities Reports Collection, 1985-2016

Collection Overview

Title: Boeing Company, Rocketdyne Propulsion and Power, Santa Susana Field Laboratory Activities Reports Collection, 1985-2016

ID: URB/ROCK

Creator: Rockwell International. Rocketdyne Division (1946-)

Extent: 128.31 Linear Feet

Date Acquired: 04/00/1990

Languages: English [eng]

Abstract

The Santa Susana Field Laboratories (SSFL) was established by Rockwell International in 1946. SSFL comprises approximately 2,700 acres located in the southeastern section of Ventura County. Rocket engine testing began at the SSFL in the 1940s. Research conducted at SSFL since its activities began has proved to generate hazardous waste.Two major investigations (1982 and 1990) have been completed and continual oversight activities of the area by the U.S. Department of Energy and the Regional Water Control Board have closely documented the cleanup activities at SSFL. In December 1996, Rocketdyne Division of Rockwell, as well as the Santa Susana Field Laboratories became a subsidiary of Boeing North American, Inc. The collection includes action plans, assessment and investigative reports, and bimonthly and quarterly monitoring reports conducted by various environmental consulting firms and government agencies.

Biographical Note

The Rockwell International Corporation established the Santa Susana Field Laboratories (SSFL) in 1946.  SSFL comprises approximately 2,700 acres located in the southeastern section of Ventura County.  The site is adjacent to the western edge of the San Fernando Valley just west of Chatsworth, extending to the western edge of the San Fernando Valley in the Simi Hills.  Communities surrounding the site include Santa Susana Knolls, Bell Canyon and Lakeside Park.

Rocket engine testing began at the SSFL in the 1940s.  Between 1953 and 1961 over 8,000 tests on rocket engines and fuel were completed at the site, many related to the early Apollo space missions.  During the 1970s and 1980s SSFL was used primarily to test engines for NASA’s space shuttle program.  The SSFL site is used today to build and test engines for the Atlas and Delta projects.

Research conducted at SSFL has generated hazardous wastes in the atmosphere, local groundwater, and soil.  In 1980, SSFL was permitted by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as a “waste pile,” and in 1982 it was “clean closed."  In 1989, SSFL was granted status as a thermal treatment facility.  Wastes used at the site included used propellants and reactive/ignitable scraps from research and development operations, as well as several solvents and kerosene used in cleaning up stored explosives.

Major investigations were completed in 1982 and 1990, both of which include laboratory analysis of soil samples, and continual oversight activities of the area by the U.S. Department of Energy and the Regional Water Control Board have closely documented cleanup activities. Dangers of contamination to the public and the environment since the 1990 investigations have been shown to be eliminated.  Currently, SSFL is in the process of closing.  Detailed plans for the closure have been prepared, and the site will continue to be monitored as activities continue well into the next century.

In December 1996, the Rocketdyne Division of Rockwell, as well as the Santa Susana Field Laboratories became a subsidiary of Boeing North American, Inc.  Shortly thereafter to Boeing North American, Inc. became Boeing Company Rocketdyne Propulsion & Power.  Cleanup activities at the site continue under the direction of the Boeing Company and the U.S. Department of Energy.  Additional environmental reports and community studies continue to be added to the collection several times a year.

Scope and Contents of the Materials

The Boeing Company, Rocketdyne Propulsion and Power, Santa Susana Field Laboratory Activities Reports Collection contains action plans, assessment and investigative reports, annual, bimonthly and quarterly monitoring reports conducted by various environmental consulting firms, Rocketdyne staff, California Department of Health Services, California Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy at the Santa Susana Field Laboratories. The collection also includes attachments comprised of permits, correspondence, fact sheets, maps, memoranda, community newsletters, and notices of community workgroup meetings. Subjects of particular interest covered in the reports and related papers include environmental concerns such as air, groundwater and soil pollution and management.

Portions of the collection are arranged in alphabetical order by subject, title or author, while others are arranged in chronological order. Where noted through a letter of transmittal, a document reference number has been given to each document. The document reference number assigned by the Rockwell International or the Boeing Company is included in the record descriptions for better access to researchers and the public.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions: The collection is open for research use.

Use Restrictions: Copyright for unpublished materials authored or otherwise produced by the creator(s) of this collection has not been transferred to California State University, Northridge. Copyright status for other materials is unknown. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.

Acquisition Source: Rocketdyne Division, Rockwell International Corporation

Related Materials:

Dorothy Boberg Collection

Senator Ed Davis Collection

Preferred Citation: For information about citing items in this collection consult the appropriate style manual, or see the Citing Archival Materials guide.

Processing Information: Robert G. Marshall, 1990

Finding Aid Revision History: Ryan D. Avery, David Maron, Teri Roberts, Melissa Landrus, Francisco Fidel Castañeda, Laura Miller, James Foster, Melissa Bergmann, Katherine Gould, April Feldman, Evelyn Rodriguez


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