A portable system for the treatment of water-reactive mixed waste

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Many of the wastes generated by the DOE complex are both hazardous and radioactive. Mixed wastes must be treated to remove the hazardous waste component before they are disposed as radioactive waste. This paper discusses the development of a treatment process for mixed wastes that exhibit the reactive hazardous characteristic. Specifically, these wastes react readily and violently with water. Wastes such as lithium hydride (LiH), sodium metal, and potassium metal are the primary wastes in this category. Besides their tendency to react with water, the wastes also produce alkaline hydroxides and hydrogen gas as products of the reactions. If in ... continued below

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9 p.

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Dziewinski, J. & Munger, D. February 1, 1995.

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Description

Many of the wastes generated by the DOE complex are both hazardous and radioactive. Mixed wastes must be treated to remove the hazardous waste component before they are disposed as radioactive waste. This paper discusses the development of a treatment process for mixed wastes that exhibit the reactive hazardous characteristic. Specifically, these wastes react readily and violently with water. Wastes such as lithium hydride (LiH), sodium metal, and potassium metal are the primary wastes in this category. Besides their tendency to react with water, the wastes also produce alkaline hydroxides and hydrogen gas as products of the reactions. If in aqueous form and if the pH exceeds 12.5, the alkaline hydroxides must be further processed to lower the pH to the range of 2--12.5 to remove the corrosive hazardous characteristic. The hydrogen gas formed during treatment is not considered a RCRA hazardous waste, but the hydrogen poses a substantial safety hazard because it can form explosive mixtures with air. Tritium may also be substituted for hydrogen in the LiH. If tritium is present, special processing may be necessary to avoid exhausting tritium into the environment. Because of the requirement to control environmental exposure to radioactivity contained in the wastes, the process design requires a reaction within enclosed vessels. These vessels require inert gas purging with subsequent off-gas scrubbing and high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filtration before discharge to the atmosphere. The process described involves directly immersing the water-reactive waste in a volume of water, controlling the reaction rate by the rate of addition of the waste to the reactor. The possibility of explosion is avoided by excluding oxygen.

Physical Description

9 p.

Notes

INIS; OSTI as DE95006273

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  • Waste management `95, Tucson, AZ (United States), 26 Feb - 2 Mar 1995

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  • Other: DE95006273
  • Report No.: LA-UR--95-346
  • Report No.: CONF-950216--57
  • Grant Number: W-7405-ENG-36
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 28197
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc665376

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  • February 1, 1995

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • June 29, 2015, 9:42 p.m.

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  • Feb. 29, 2016, 6:59 p.m.

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Dziewinski, J. & Munger, D. A portable system for the treatment of water-reactive mixed waste, article, February 1, 1995; New Mexico. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc665376/: accessed August 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.