Remediation of low-level mixed waste: Cellulose-based materials and plutonium

Kimberly L Ogden, Gregory E Ogden, John L. Hanners, Pat J. Unkefer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Low-level mixed radioactive wastes containing cellulose-based materials and plutonium have been generated during various nuclear processing activities. Biological digestion of the organic- or cellulose- based material was examined as an environmentally acceptable and effective method of treatment for these and other similar wastes. Cellulase enzyme was used to initiate biodegradation prior to 90% destruction of the cellulose material by a sewage sludge consortium. Plutonium did not significantly effect the biodegradation. Bench-scale experimental data were used to design a batch treatment system. A cost and sensitivity analysis was performed to determine the optimal reactor size, materials of construction and media type. The sensitivity analysis indicated that while a 12-month treatment scenario using a carbon steel ball mill, sludge digester and vacuum thickener was the least expensive scenario evaluated on a levelized cost basis ($800 per ton of waste degraded per month), the 12-month scenario using stainless steel construction and the alternative dewatering system offered the most cost-effective treatment alternative and better corrosion resistance (levelized cost of $1130 per ton per month). The dewatering system consisting of a disk centrifuge and sludge dryer is capable of doubling the sludge solids content and produce an overall waste reduction of 67%. The proposed waste treatment system offers a cost savings of up to 31% compared to conventional disposal practices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)115-130
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Hazardous Materials
Volume51
Issue number1-3
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1996

Fingerprint

Plutonium
plutonium
Sewage
Remediation
Cellulose
cellulose
remediation
sludge
dewatering
cost
Dewatering
sensitivity analysis
Costs
biodegradation
Biodegradation
Costs and Cost Analysis
steel
Sensitivity analysis
cost analysis
Radioactive Waste

Keywords

  • Biodegradation
  • Cellulose-based material
  • Cheese cloth
  • Plutonium
  • Radioactive waste
  • Remediation cost analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Health and Safety
  • Process Chemistry and Technology
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Environmental Engineering

Cite this

Remediation of low-level mixed waste : Cellulose-based materials and plutonium. / Ogden, Kimberly L; Ogden, Gregory E; Hanners, John L.; Unkefer, Pat J.

In: Journal of Hazardous Materials, Vol. 51, No. 1-3, 11.1996, p. 115-130.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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