Scrap metal management issues associated with naturally occurring radioactive material

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Certain industrial processes sometimes generate waste by-products that contain naturally occurring radioactive material (NORM) at elevated concentrations. Some industries, including the water treatment, geothermal energy, and petroleum industries, generate scrap metal that may be contaminated with NORM wastes. Of these three industries, the petroleum industry probably generates the largest quantity of NORM-contaminated equipment, conservatively estimated at 170,000 tons per year. Equipment may become contaminated when NORM-containing scale or sludge accumulates inside water-handling equipment. The primary radionuclides of concern in these NORM wastes are radium-226 and radium-228. NORM-contaminated equipment generated by the petroleum industry currently is managed several ways. Some equipment ... continued below

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8 p.

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Smith, K.P. & Blunt, D.L. August 1, 1995.

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Description

Certain industrial processes sometimes generate waste by-products that contain naturally occurring radioactive material (NORM) at elevated concentrations. Some industries, including the water treatment, geothermal energy, and petroleum industries, generate scrap metal that may be contaminated with NORM wastes. Of these three industries, the petroleum industry probably generates the largest quantity of NORM-contaminated equipment, conservatively estimated at 170,000 tons per year. Equipment may become contaminated when NORM-containing scale or sludge accumulates inside water-handling equipment. The primary radionuclides of concern in these NORM wastes are radium-226 and radium-228. NORM-contaminated equipment generated by the petroleum industry currently is managed several ways. Some equipment is routinely decontaminated for reuse; other equipment becomes scrap metal and may be disposed of by burial at a licensed landfill, encapsulation inside the wellbore of an abandoned well, or shipment overseas for smelting. In view of the increased regulatory activities addressing NORM, the economic burden of managing NORM-contaminated wastes, including radioactive scrap metal, is likely to continue to grow. Efforts to develop a cost-effective strategy for managing radioactive scrap metal should focus on identifying the least expensive disposition options that provide adequate protection of human health and the environment. Specifically, efforts should focus on better characterizing the quantity of radioactive scrap available for recycle or reuse, the radioactivity concentration levels, and the potential risks associated with different disposal options.

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8 p.

Notes

OSTI as DE95015646

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  • 3. annual conference on the recycle and reuse of radioactive scrap metal, Knoxville, TN (United States), 31 Jul - 3 Aug 1995

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  • Other: DE95015646
  • Report No.: ANL/EA/CP--86390
  • Report No.: CONF-950786--1
  • Grant Number: W-31109-ENG-38
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 100109
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc621850

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

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  • August 1, 1995

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • June 16, 2015, 7:43 a.m.

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  • Dec. 14, 2015, 12:09 p.m.

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Smith, K.P. & Blunt, D.L. Scrap metal management issues associated with naturally occurring radioactive material, article, August 1, 1995; Illinois. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc621850/: accessed June 19, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.