THE ROLE OF LIQUID WASTE PRETREATMENT TECHNOLOGIES IN SOLVING THE DOE CLEAN-UP MISSION

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The objective of this report is to describe the pretreatment solutions that allow treatment to be tailored to specific wastes, processing ahead of the completion schedules for the main treatment facilities, and reduction of technical risks associated with future processing schedules. Wastes stored at Hanford and Savannah River offer challenging scientific and engineering tasks. At both sites, space limitations confound the ability to effectively retrieve and treat the wastes. Additionally, the radiation dose to the worker operating and maintaining the radiochemical plants has a large role in establishing the desired radioactivity removal. However, the regulatory requirements to treat supernatant and ... continued below

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Wilmarth, B & Sheryl Bush, S October 31, 2008.

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Description

The objective of this report is to describe the pretreatment solutions that allow treatment to be tailored to specific wastes, processing ahead of the completion schedules for the main treatment facilities, and reduction of technical risks associated with future processing schedules. Wastes stored at Hanford and Savannah River offer challenging scientific and engineering tasks. At both sites, space limitations confound the ability to effectively retrieve and treat the wastes. Additionally, the radiation dose to the worker operating and maintaining the radiochemical plants has a large role in establishing the desired radioactivity removal. However, the regulatory requirements to treat supernatant and saltcake tank wastes differ at the two sites. Hanford must treat and remove radioactivity from the tanks based on the TriParty Agreement and Waste Incidental to Reprocessing (WIR) documentation. These authorizing documents do not specify treatment technologies; rather, they specify endstate conditions. Dissimilarly, Waste Determinations prepared at SRS in accordance with Section 3116 of the 2005 National Defense Authorization Act along with state operating permits establish the methodology and amounts of radioactivity that must be removed and may be disposed of in South Carolina. After removal of entrained solids and site-specific radionuclides, supernatant and saltcake wastes are considered to be low activity waste (LAW) and are immobilized in glass and disposed of at the Hanford Site Integrated Disposal Facility (IDF) or formulated into a grout for disposal at the Savannah River Site Saltstone Disposal Facility. Wastes stored at the Hanford Site or SRS comprise saltcake, supernate, and sludges. The supernatant and saltcake waste fractions contain primarily sodium salts, metals (e.g., Al, Cr), cesium-137 (Cs-137), technetium-99 (Tc-99) and entrained solids containing radionuclides such as strontium-90 (Sr-90) and transuranic elements. The sludges contain many of the transition metal hydroxides that precipitate when the spent acidic process solutions are rendered alkaline with sodium hydroxide. The sludges contain Sr-90 and transuranic elements. The wastes stored at each site have been generated and stored for over fifty years. Although the majority of the wastes were generated to support nuclear weapons production and reprocessing, the wastes differ substantially between the sites. Table 5 shows the volumes and total radioactivity (including decay daughters) of the waste phases stored in tanks at each site. At Hanford, there are 177 tanks that contain 56.5 Mgal of waste. SRS has 51 larger tanks, of which 2 are closed, that contain 36.5 Mgal. Mainly due to recovery operations, the waste stored at Hanford has less total curies than that stored at Savannah River. The total radioactivity of the Hanford wastes contains approximately 190 MCi, and the total radioactivity of the Savannah River wastes contains 400 MCi.

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  • Report No.: SRNL-STI-2008-00426
  • Grant Number: DE-AC09-08SR22470
  • DOI: 10.2172/941109 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 941109
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc900147

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

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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  • October 31, 2008

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Sept. 27, 2016, 1:39 a.m.

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  • Dec. 12, 2016, 1:06 p.m.

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Wilmarth, B & Sheryl Bush, S. THE ROLE OF LIQUID WASTE PRETREATMENT TECHNOLOGIES IN SOLVING THE DOE CLEAN-UP MISSION, report, October 31, 2008; [Aiken, South Carolina]. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc900147/: accessed November 18, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.