287365 Progress in Removal of Radioactive Waste From Light Water Reactors

Thursday, November 1, 2012: 5:15 PM
305 (Convention Center )
Lev Reznikov1, Luke Sicard II2 and Victor Zents3, (1)Engineering, Global Fabrication, Inc., DuBois, PA, (2)Engineering, Global Fabrication Inc., DuBois, PA, (3)Global Fabrication Inc., DuBois, PA

There are currently in excess of one-hundred (100) light water reactor nuclear power plants operating within the United States; and many others in foreign countries. Radioactive corrosion products are present in varying accumulations throughout all light water reactor plants. The radioactive corrosion products/deposits are commonly referred to as “CRUD” an acronym for Clinch River Unidentified Deposits, a term coined to describe the usually black or gray, highly radioactive deposits that were first noted in the very early experimental light water reactor plants; most notable at the Clinch River facility.

The presence of CRUD inside the station piping system drives up the cost of routine operations and maintenance of the plant many fold. Simple, inexpensive tasks become highly intricate and inordinately expensive because of the extreme methods that must be employed to cope with the radioactivity emanating from the CRUD, and to prevent the release of CRUD to the stations environs.

 Current filtration technology can remove the CRUD from the station fluid systems; however, collection of significant quantities of CRUD in conventional filters creates major radiological problems in removing the spent cartridges. The radiological penalties associated with cartridge change-out are nearly as bad as those associated with leaving the CRUD in place, inside the fluid system.

The radiological problems associated with cartridge change-out have been so troublesome that they have severely limited the use of cartridge filtration technology in commercial nuclear power plants. Finding a way to remove CRUD from troublesome areas without creating additional radiological problems in the process would be viewed as a noble effort, indeed. That is precisely what the new APPARATUS FOR RADIOACTIVE PARTICULATE FILTRATION filter/cartridge change-out system does. It will allow unimpeded utilization of the unique filtration technology without the severe radiological penalties associated with current cartridge change-out systems.

Our patented process of filter change-out allows us to remove the dirty filter cartridges without having to disassemble the vessel for cleaning.  This in turn will significantly reduce personnel exposure as well as overall filter change out time.

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