Description: Significant improvements have been made in routine assay techniques for uranium and plutonium as part of an effort to improve accountability at the Savannah River Plant (SRP). Emphasis was placed on input/output accountability points and key physical inventory tanks associated with purification and finishing processes. Improvements were made in existing assay methods; new methods were implemented; and the application of these methods was greatly expanded. Prior to assays, samples were validated via density measurements. Digital density meters precise to four, five, and six decimal places were used to meet specific requirements. Improved plutonium assay techniques are now in routine use: controlled-potential coulometry, ion-exchange coulometry, and Pu(III) diode-array spectrophotometry. A new state-of-the-art coulometer was fabricated and used to ensure maximum accuracy in verifying standards and in measuring plutonium in product streams. The diode-array spectrophotometer for Pu(III) measurements was modified with fiber optics to facilitate remote measurements; rapid, precise measurements made the technique ideally suited for high-throughput assays. For uranium assays, the isotope-dilution mass spectrometric (IDMS) method was converted to a gravimetric basis. The IDMS method and the existing Davies-Gray titration (gravimetric basis) have met accountability requirements for uranium. More recently, a Pu(VI) diode-array spectrophotometric method was used on a test basis to measure plutonium in shielded-cell input accountability samples. In addition, tests to measure uranium via diode-array spectrophotometry were initiated. This rapid, precise method will replace IDMS for certain key sample points.
Date: January 1, 1986
Creator: Holland, M K & Dorsett, R S
Item Type: Refine your search to only Article
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department