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Continuous, real-time analysis of radioactive waste achieved at PNNL

September 13, 2006 Share This!

Monitoring system capable of working in complex, harsh environments

RICHLAND, Wash. – An improved monitoring system for providing continuous analysis of high-level radioactive waste has been developed by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory researchers and was reported at the national meeting of the American Chemical Society.

The system features on-line Raman spectroscopy that quickly generates real-time data and analysis. PNNL researcher, Samuel Bryan, says the monitoring system is capable of simultaneously and continuously quantifying the levels of all the chemically-significant anions within the waste, such as nitrate, nitrite, phosphate, carbonate, chromate, hydroxide, sulfate and aluminate. The total sodium ion concentration was determined independently by modeling inputs from on-line conductivity and density meters.

The system is adaptable to monitoring in a variety of harsh environments. Bryan notes that system components and analytical tools of the process monitor can be tailored to monitor a variety of complex mixtures such as pulp and paper processing liquids, electroplating solutions, as well as radioactive tank wastes.

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Samuel Bryan made his presentation at the 232nd ACS National Meeting in San Francisco, CA, Wednesday, September 13, at 8:30 a.m., at the Moscone Convention Center in Room 252/254.

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Interdisciplinary teams at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory address many of America's most pressing issues in energy, the environment and national security through advances in basic and applied science. Founded in 1965, PNNL employs 4,300 staff and has an annual budget of about $950 million. It is managed by Battelle for the U.S. Department of Energy. For more information, visit the PNNL News Center, or follow PNNL on Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn and Twitter.

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