DEVELOPMENT OF REMOTE HANFORD CONNECTOR GASKET REPLACEMENT TOOLING FOR DWPF

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The Defense Waste Processing Facility (DWPF) requested the Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) to develop tooling and equipment to remotely replace gaskets in mechanical Hanford connectors to reduce personnel radiation exposure as compared to the current hands-on method. It is also expected that radiation levels will continually increase with future waste streams. The equipment is operated in the Remote Equipment Decontamination Cell (REDC), which is equipped with compressed air, two master-slave manipulators (MSM's) and an electro-mechanical manipulator (EMM) arm for operation of the remote tools. The REDC does not provide access to electrical power, so the equipment must be manually ... continued below

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Krementz, D. & Coughlin, Jeffrey May 5, 2009.

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The Defense Waste Processing Facility (DWPF) requested the Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) to develop tooling and equipment to remotely replace gaskets in mechanical Hanford connectors to reduce personnel radiation exposure as compared to the current hands-on method. It is also expected that radiation levels will continually increase with future waste streams. The equipment is operated in the Remote Equipment Decontamination Cell (REDC), which is equipped with compressed air, two master-slave manipulators (MSM's) and an electro-mechanical manipulator (EMM) arm for operation of the remote tools. The REDC does not provide access to electrical power, so the equipment must be manually or pneumatically operated. The MSM's have a load limit at full extension of ten pounds, which limited the weight of the installation tool. In order to remotely replace Hanford connector gaskets several operations must be performed remotely, these include: removal of the spent gasket and retaining ring (retaining ring is also called snap ring), loading the new snap ring and gasket into the installation tool and installation of the new gasket into the Hanford connector. SRNL developed and tested tools that successfully perform all of the necessary tasks. Removal of snap rings from horizontal and vertical connectors is performed by separate air actuated retaining ring removal tools and is manipulated in the cell by the MSM. In order install a new gasket, the snap ring loader is used to load a new snap ring into a groove in the gasket installation tool. A new gasket is placed on the installation tool and retained by custom springs. An MSM lifts the installation tool and presses the mounted gasket against the connector block. Once the installation tool is in position, the gasket and snap ring are installed onto the connector by pneumatic actuation. All of the tools are located on a custom work table with a pneumatic valve station that directs compressed air to the desired tool and vents the tools as needed. Extensive testing of tooling operation was performed in the DWPF manipulator repair shop. This testing allowed the operators to gain confidence before the equipment was exposed to radioactive contamination. The testing also led to multiple design improvements. On July 17 and 29, 2008 the Remote Gasket Replacement Tooling was successfully demonstrated in the REDC at the DWPF of The Savannah River Site.

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  • Report No.: SRNL-STI-2008-00544
  • Grant Number: DE-AC09-08SR22470
  • DOI: 10.2172/956711 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 956711
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc932961

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  • May 5, 2009

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Nov. 13, 2016, 7:26 p.m.

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  • Dec. 12, 2016, 3:38 p.m.

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Krementz, D. & Coughlin, Jeffrey. DEVELOPMENT OF REMOTE HANFORD CONNECTOR GASKET REPLACEMENT TOOLING FOR DWPF, report, May 5, 2009; South Carolina. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc932961/: accessed October 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.