Tom Kuckertz: Retired staff member still contributes engineering expertise to council’s mission

Tom and Sue Kuckertz

The council has benefited from Chicago-born Tom Kuckertz’ broad experience in engineering for 16 years and counting. After his retirement from the council in 2014, Kuckertz continued on as a volunteer for the committee he worked with most closely, the Terminal Operations and Environmental Monitoring Committee.

A young Kuckertz earned degrees in electrical engineering at the University of Illinois and the University of Idaho, followed by two years in the U.S. Army as a Signal Corps officer, where he was involved in the design and implementation of large communications systems.

“Basically, it involved how to move information from one place to another, and in most cases, deny access to adversaries,” explained Kuckertz.

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Inspection and testing of secondary containment liners at terminal observed

Photo of repairs by Nelli Vanderburg.
Photo by Nelli Vanderburg.

On July 10, staffer Nelli Vanderburg visited the terminal to observe an inspection and repairs to drainage piping under the secondary containment liner. These pipes drain water from the secondary containment area after a rain. A manhole was also being installed.

While the pipes were being repaired, Alyeska took the opportunity to inspect and test the secondary containment liner. The liner is made of “catalytically blown asphalt,” or asphalt that has been blown into place, as opposed to poured. In the photo below, a section of the flexible liner is being cut. The cut section will be tested for permeability. The last inspection and testing of these liners was in 1992.

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