CONTROL TESTING OF THE UK NATIONAL NUCLEAR LABORATORY'S RADBALL TECHNOLOGY AT SAVANNAH RIVER NATIONAL LABORATORY

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The UK National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL) has developed a remote, non-electrical, radiation-mapping device known as RadBall (patent pending), which offers a means to locate and quantify radiation hazards and sources within contaminated areas of the nuclear industry. To date, the RadBall has been deployed in a number of technology trials in nuclear waste reprocessing plants at Sellafield in the UK. The trials have demonstrated the successful ability of the RadBall technology to be deployed and retrieved from active areas. The positive results from these initial deployment trials and the anticipated future potential of RadBall have led to the NNL partnering ... continued below

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Farfan, E. November 23, 2009.

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The UK National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL) has developed a remote, non-electrical, radiation-mapping device known as RadBall (patent pending), which offers a means to locate and quantify radiation hazards and sources within contaminated areas of the nuclear industry. To date, the RadBall has been deployed in a number of technology trials in nuclear waste reprocessing plants at Sellafield in the UK. The trials have demonstrated the successful ability of the RadBall technology to be deployed and retrieved from active areas. The positive results from these initial deployment trials and the anticipated future potential of RadBall have led to the NNL partnering with the Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) to further underpin and strengthen the technical performance of the technology. RadBall consists of a colander-like outer shell that houses a radiation-sensitive polymer sphere. It has no power requirements and can be positioned in tight or hard-to reach places. The outer shell works to collimate radiation sources and those areas of the polymer sphere that are exposed react, becoming increasingly less transparent, in proportion to the absorbed dose. The polymer sphere is imaged in an optical-CT scanner which produces a high resolution 3D map of optical attenuation coefficients. Subsequent analysis of the optical attenuation maps provides information on the spatial distribution and strength of the sources in a given area forming a 3D characterization of the area of interest. This study completed at SRNL addresses key aspects of the testing of the RadBall technology. The first set of tests was performed at Savannah River Nuclear Solutions Health Physics Instrument Calibration Laboratory (HPICL) using various gamma-ray sources and an x-ray machine with known radiological characteristics. The objective of these preliminary tests was to identify the optimal dose and collimator thickness. The second set of tests involved a highly contaminated hot cell. The objective of this part of the testing was to characterize a hot cell with unknown radiation sources. The RadBall calibration experiments and hot cell deployment completed at SRNL were successful in that for each trial, the technology was able to locate the radiation sources. The NNL believe that the ability of RadBall to be remotely deployed with no electrical supplies into difficult to access areas of plant and locate and quantify radiation hazards is a unique radiation mapping service. The NNL consider there to be significant business potential associated with this innovative technology.

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  • Waste Management

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  • Report No.: SRNL-STI-2009-00771
  • Grant Number: DE-AC09-08SR22470
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 969992
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc927117

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  • November 23, 2009

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Nov. 13, 2016, 7:26 p.m.

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  • Dec. 12, 2016, 5:45 p.m.

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Farfan, E. CONTROL TESTING OF THE UK NATIONAL NUCLEAR LABORATORY'S RADBALL TECHNOLOGY AT SAVANNAH RIVER NATIONAL LABORATORY, article, November 23, 2009; South Carolina. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc927117/: accessed December 12, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.