Deposition Velocities of Non-Newtonian Slurries in Pipelines: Complex Simulant Testing

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One of the concerns expressed by the External Flowsheet Review Team (EFRT) is about the potential for pipe plugging at the Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant (WTP). Per the review’s executive summary, “Piping that transports slurries will plug unless it is properly designed to minimize this risk. This design approach has not been followed consistently, which will lead to frequent shutdowns due to line plugging.” To evaluate the potential for plugging, deposition-velocity tests were performed on several physical simulants to determine whether the design approach is conservative. Deposition velocity is defined as the velocity below which particles begin to deposit ... continued below

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Poloski, Adam P.; Bonebrake, Michael L.; Casella, Andrew M.; Johnson, Michael D.; Toth, James J.; Adkins, Harold E. et al. July 1, 2009.

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One of the concerns expressed by the External Flowsheet Review Team (EFRT) is about the potential for pipe plugging at the Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant (WTP). Per the review’s executive summary, “Piping that transports slurries will plug unless it is properly designed to minimize this risk. This design approach has not been followed consistently, which will lead to frequent shutdowns due to line plugging.” To evaluate the potential for plugging, deposition-velocity tests were performed on several physical simulants to determine whether the design approach is conservative. Deposition velocity is defined as the velocity below which particles begin to deposit to form a moving bed of particles on the bottom of a straight horizontal pipe during slurry-transport operations. The deposition velocity depends on the system geometry and the physical properties of the particles and fluid. An experimental program was implemented to test the stability-map concepts presented in WTP-RPT-175 Rev. 01. Two types of simulant were tested. The first type of simulant was similar to the glass-bead simulants discussed in WTP-RPT-175 Rev. 0 ; it consists of glass beads with a nominal particle size of 150 µm in a kaolin/water slurry. The initial simulant was prepared at a target yield stress of approximately 30 Pa. The yield stress was then reduced, stepwise, via dilution or rheological modifiers, ultimately to a level of <1 Pa. At each yield-stress step, deposition-velocity testing was performed. Testing over this range of yield-stress bounds the expected rheological operating window of the WTP and allows the results to be compared to stability-map predictions for this system. The second simulant was a precipitated hydroxide that simulates HLW pretreated sludge from Hanford waste tank AZ-101. Testing was performed in a manner similar to that for the first simulant over a wide range of yield stresses; however, an additional test of net-positive suction-head required (NPSHR) was performed at each yield stress condition. Unlike the previous simulant, the sizes and densities of the particles that can deposit in the piping are a result of the simulant precipitation process; there is expected to be a complex mixture of particles of various sizes and densities that make it difficult to predict a stability map. The objective of the testing is to observe whether behavior consistent with the stability-map concept occurs in complex simulants with mixtures of different sizes and densities.

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  • Report No.: PNNL-18316
  • Grant Number: AC05-76RL01830
  • DOI: 10.2172/992020 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 992020
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc1013982

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  • July 1, 2009

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Oct. 14, 2017, 8:36 a.m.

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  • Oct. 19, 2017, 8:28 p.m.

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Poloski, Adam P.; Bonebrake, Michael L.; Casella, Andrew M.; Johnson, Michael D.; Toth, James J.; Adkins, Harold E. et al. Deposition Velocities of Non-Newtonian Slurries in Pipelines: Complex Simulant Testing, report, July 1, 2009; Richland, Washington. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc1013982/: accessed January 16, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.