LANGLEY AIR FORCE BASE/NASA LANGLEY RESEARCH CENTER
On this page:
- What Is Being Done to Clean Up the Site?
- What Is the Current Site Status?
- Emergency Response and Removal
- Operable Units (opens new page)
- Cleanup Progress (opens new page)
The Langley Air Force Base (LAFB)/NASA Langley Research Center (NASA LaRC) site in Hampton, Virginia, consists of two federal facilities. LAFB covers 3,152 acres. It has been used as an airfield and aeronautical research center since 1917, and is the home base for the First Fighter Wing. NASA LaRC covers 787 acres. It is a research facility with numerous operations in nearly 200 buildings and 40 wind tunnels. Site activities contaminated soil, groundwater, sediment and fish with hazardous chemicals. Investigations have identified more than 40 sources of possible contamination at the two facilities. These sources include abandoned landfills, fueling areas, wastewater treatment plants, the stormwater system, warehouses, spill sites, electrical substations and transformers, fuel tanks, burning areas, septic tanks, storage areas, waste pits, and training areas. Remedial investigations, remedy selection and remedial designs are underway.
What Is Being Done to Clean Up the Site?
The site is being addressed through federal actions.
EPA has conducted several five-year reviews of the site’s remedy. These reviews ensure that the remedies put in place protect public health and the environment, and function as intended by site decision documents. The most recent review concluded that response actions at the site are in accordance with the remedy selected by EPA and that the remedy continues to be protective of human health and the environment.
What Is the Current Site Status?
EPA has selected final remedies for over 18 site areas, or operable units (OUs). The long-term remedies for these OUs include institutional controls; dredging and off-site disposal of contaminated sediment; excavation and disposal of contaminated soil; construction of erosion and sediment controls; construction of soil covers; demolition and disposal of contaminated structures; and groundwater monitoring. Remedial investigations are underway at several other OUs. Remedy construction began in 1999 and is ongoing.
Emergency Response and Removal
Cleanup has also included several removal actions, or short-term cleanups, to address immediate threats to human health and the environment. These actions have included soil removal at the old entomology plant/wastewater treatment plant area; PCB-contaminated soil removal at the abandoned electrical substation; demolition and disposal of the entomology building; excavation of chlorinated pesticide- and herbicide-contaminated soil; removal of soil and associated piping at an old wastewater treatment plant; and removal of contaminated soil at an old transformer storage area.
During cleanup, a site can be divided into a number of distinct areas depending on its complexity. These areas, called operable units (OUs), may address geographic areas, specific problems, or areas where a specific action is required. Examples of typical operable units include construction of a groundwater pump and treatment system or construction of a cap over a landfill.