Phase II of a Six sigma Initiative to Study DWPF SME Analytical Turnaround Times: SRNL's Evaluation of Carbonate-Based Dissolution Methods

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The Analytical Development Section (ADS) and the Statistical Consulting Section (SCS) of the Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) are participating in a Six Sigma initiative to improve the Defense Waste Processing Facility (DWPF) Laboratory. The Six Sigma initiative has focused on reducing the analytical turnaround time of samples from the Slurry Mix Evaporator (SME) by developing streamlined sampling and analytical methods [1]. The objective of Phase I was to evaluate the sub-sampling of a larger sample bottle and the performance of a cesium carbonate (Cs{sub 2}CO{sub 3}) digestion method. Successful implementation of the Cs{sub 2}CO{sub 3} fusion method in the ... continued below

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Edwards, Thomas September 1, 2005.

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The Analytical Development Section (ADS) and the Statistical Consulting Section (SCS) of the Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) are participating in a Six Sigma initiative to improve the Defense Waste Processing Facility (DWPF) Laboratory. The Six Sigma initiative has focused on reducing the analytical turnaround time of samples from the Slurry Mix Evaporator (SME) by developing streamlined sampling and analytical methods [1]. The objective of Phase I was to evaluate the sub-sampling of a larger sample bottle and the performance of a cesium carbonate (Cs{sub 2}CO{sub 3}) digestion method. Successful implementation of the Cs{sub 2}CO{sub 3} fusion method in the DWPF would have important time savings and convenience benefits because this single digestion would replace the dual digestion scheme now used. A single digestion scheme would result in more efficient operations in both the DWPF shielded cells and the inductively coupled plasma--atomic emission spectroscopy (ICP-AES) laboratory. By taking a small aliquot of SME slurry from a large sample bottle and dissolving the vitrified SME sample with carbonate fusion methods, an analytical turnaround time reduction from 27 hours to 9 hours could be realized in the DWPF. This analytical scheme has the potential for not only dramatically reducing turnaround times, but also streamlining operations to minimize wear and tear on critical shielded cell components that are prone to fail, including the Hydragard{trademark} sampling valves and manipulators. Favorable results from the Phase I tests [2] led to the recommendation for a Phase II effort as outlined in the DWPF Technical Task Request (TTR) [3]. There were three major tasks outlined in the TTR, and SRNL issued a Task Technical and QA Plan [4] with a corresponding set of three major task activities: (1) Compare weight percent (wt%) total solids measurements of large volume samples versus peanut vial samples. (2) Evaluate Cs{sub 2}CO{sub 3} and K{sub 2}CO{sub 3} fusion methods using DWPF simulated glass (part 1) and (to the extent possible) using DWPF radioactive glass (part 2). (3) Recommend specific equipment to implement the new methods and work with SRNL's Equipment Engineering Section (EES) to ensure compatibility of the equipment with the DWPF shielded cells. The focus of this report is major task activity No.2 (parts 1 and 2). The other two major task activities are to be addressed separately. The measurements supporting task activity No.1 are being conducted at the DWPF. EES is currently designing and fabricating the DWPF cell equipment needed for the new method as part of major task activity No.3.

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  • Report No.: WSRC-TR-2005-00396
  • Grant Number: DE-AC09-96SR18500
  • DOI: 10.2172/881427 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 881427
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc885909

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

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  • September 1, 2005

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Sept. 21, 2016, 2:29 a.m.

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  • Dec. 6, 2016, 3:57 p.m.

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Edwards, Thomas. Phase II of a Six sigma Initiative to Study DWPF SME Analytical Turnaround Times: SRNL's Evaluation of Carbonate-Based Dissolution Methods, report, September 1, 2005; Aiken, South Carolina. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc885909/: accessed January 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.