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Organic Tank Safety Project: development of a method to measure the equilibrium water content of Hanford organic tank wastes and demonstration of method on actual waste

By R.D. Scheele, P.R. Bredt and R.L. Sell

Abstract

Some of Hanford`s underground waste storage tanks contain Organic- bearing high level wastes that are high priority safety issues because of potentially hazardous chemical reactions of organics with inorganic oxidants in these wastes such as nitrates and nitrites. To ensure continued safe storage of these wastes, Westinghouse Hanford Company has placed affected tanks on the Organic Watch List and manages them under special rules. Because water content has been identified as the most efficient agent for preventing a propagating reaction and is an integral part of the criteria developed to ensure continued safe storage of Hanford`s organic-bearing radioactive tank wastes, as part of the Organic Tank Safety Program the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory developed and demonstrated a simple and easily implemented procedure to determine the equilibrium water content of these potentially reactive wastes exposed to the range of water vapor pressures that might be experienced during the wastes` future storage. This work focused on the equilibrium water content and did not investigate the various factors such as @ ventilation, tank surface area, and waste porosity that control the rate that the waste would come into equilibrium, with either the average Hanford water partial pressure 5.5 torr or other possible water partial pressures

Topics: Flammability, Oxidizers, Nitrates, 05 Nuclear Fuels, Underground Storage, Nitrites, Organic Wastes, Safety, Moisture, High-Level Radioactive Wastes, 40 Chemistry, Tanks
Publisher: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (U.S.)
Year: 1996
DOI identifier: 10.2172/394914
OAI identifier:
Provided by: UNT Digital Library
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