The 9977 General Purpose Fissile Package, A Replacement for the 6M Specification Package Page: 8 of 13
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2006 INMM Conference
The packages were subjected to the regulatory fully engulfing fire test, conducted in accordance with
ASTM Standard E 2230-02. The tests were performed at the South Carolina Fire Academy, where
suitable facilities are available, Figures 9 and 10.. The tests were performed by Novatech,, who have
performed numerous fire tests for certification of radioactive material packages. The packages were
burned in the orientation expected to be most challenging. The tests confirmed the ability of the urethane
foam and Fiberfrax insulation system to protect the containment vessels from the fire. A practice burn
was performed using a mock-up of a GPFP without the urethane foam. The liner was attached to the
upper deck-plate and insulated with the Fiberfrax layer, only. The maximum temperatures for the mock-
up, practice package were 4350F, which is well within the limited duration service temperature for the o-
ring seals in the containment vessel.
Figure 10. TP-5 During Post Fire Test
Figure 9. Fully Engulfing Fire Test of TP-2.
The urethane foam intumesces as it undergoes thermal degradation, producing a voluminous, very low
density char-foam decomposition product. In preliminary furnace tests of urethane foam overpacks, the
char-foam was found to flow out of the fill and vent holes in the package and accumulate in large clumps
in the furnace, which was an oxygen starved environment. In the fire tests, material exiting the package
was burned away immediately. Combustible gaseous decomposition products jetted from the vent holes
in the packages during and immediately after the fire exposure. These jets burned with a bright flame,
which could be detected occasionally in the midst of the fire. The expanding char-foam material pushing
against the bottom or Test Package 3, opened the tear formed in the crush test (without increasing its
length). This resulted in an increased loss in foam mass (ca. 20%), compared to the other packages.
Post Test Examination
Following each test in the sequence, the packages were digitally radiographed to document the
cumulative effects of the tests on the packages. Following completion of all the tests and final
radiographs, the packages were cut open and the interior components examined, Figures 11 and 12. As
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SMITH, ALLEN. The 9977 General Purpose Fissile Package, A Replacement for the 6M Specification Package, report, January 13, 2006; [Aiken, South Carolina]. (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc892013/m1/8/: accessed May 26, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.