[ RadSafe ] distinguishing fuel form non-fuel debris

Wiles, Jonathan C Jonathan_C_Wiles at RL.gov
Mon Sep 27 11:57:29 CDT 2010


At the Hanford Site we identified a fair amount of spent fuel over the last several years while excavating burial grounds associated with the old production reactors.  Initially the items were classified as "suspect fuel" based primarily on dose rate (10 R/h to 100 R/h on contact); and secondarily on size and shape. Later the presence of spent fuel was confirmed based on the large Cs-137 signature identified using gamma energy analysis detectors such as the ISOCS.

Jon Wiles  

-----Original Message-----
From: radsafe-bounces at agni.phys.iit.edu [mailto:radsafe-bounces at agni.phys.iit.edu] On Behalf Of Rich, John
Sent: Monday, September 27, 2010 9:37 AM
To: 'The International Radiation Protection (Health Physics) MailingList'
Subject: [ RadSafe ] distinguishing fuel form non-fuel debris

Radsafers, we have a cleanup question.

We have a mixture of very old debris on the spent fuel pool floor.  It's pretty much all the same color, and pretty much visually indistinguishable as to its original source.  As you can imagine dose rates vary all over the map.  The problem is distinguishing fuel from non-fuel.

It's not practical to run small quantities through an MCI, so I'm looking for help on making a reasonable distinction.  The original assumption was that if the dose rate is low it's not fuel.  But if the dose rate is comparatively high, then it could be a fuel fragment, or a Co-60 fragment, or some such.  We've considered analyses that take radiodecay and sample size into account to develop a baseline.  (Haven't performed the analyses yet, though.)

I'd appreciate some feedback on this.  Thanx in advance  - - jmr

John Rich
772-467-7000 #4103

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