Technology Reference Guide for Radioactively Contaminated Media

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  • United States Environmental Protection Agency

    Office of Radiation and Indoor Air Radiation Protection Program (6608J)

    EPA 402-R-07-004 October 2007

    Technology Reference Guide for Radioactively Contaminated Media

  • TECHNOLOGY REFERENCE GUIDE FOR RADIOACTIVELY CONTAMINATED MEDIA

    EPA - 402-R-07-004

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Office of Air and Radiation

    Office of Radiation and Indoor Air Radiation Protection Division

    Center for Radiation Site Cleanup

    Prepared Under:

    Contract No. 4W-2323-YTSX

  • i

    DISCLAIMER

    This Technology Guide, developed by USEPA, is meant to be a summary of information available for technologies demonstrated to be effective for treatment of radioactively contaminated media. Inclusion of technologies in this Guide should not be viewed as an endorsement of either the technology or the vendor by USEPA. Similarly, exclusion of any technology should not be viewed as not being endorsed by USEPA; it merely means that the information related to that technology was not so readily available during the development of this Guide. Also, the technology-specific performance and cost data presented in this document are somewhat subjective as they are from a limited number of demonstration projects and based on professional judgment. In addition, all images used in this document are from public domain or have been used with permission.

  • ii

    ACKNOWEDGEMENTS

    This Guide was developed by the Radiation Protection Division (RPD) of EPAs Office of Radiation and Indoor Air (ORIA). Mr. Edward Feltcorn of ORIAs Center for Radiation Site Cleanup, served as the Work Assignment Manager.

    Several individuals provided valuable input regarding the content of this Guide throughout its development. EPA/ORIA wishes to thank the following individuals for their assistance and technical review comments on the drafts of this Guide:

    Schatzi Fitz-James Rodger Goodman Brian Littleton

    Special thanks goes to the following ORIA staff that were instrumental in the technical review and production of this 2007 updated Guide:

    Ronald Wilhelm Lindsey Bender

    This document was prepared by Terranear PMC, Inc., under contract number 4W-2323-YTSX.

  • iii

    FORWARD

    The Technology Reference Guidance for Radioactively Contaminated Media (Guide) is intended to aid in the selection of treatment technologies for remediation of radioactively contaminated media. The Guide is designed to help site managers, Remedial Program Managers (RPM), On-Scene Coordinators (OSC), their contractors and others to identify and understand technologies that are potentially useful in the remediation of radioactively contaminated media.

    This Guide is designed to give easy access to critical information on applied technologies that address radioactive contamination in solid and liquid media. The solid media includes soils, sediments, sludge and solid waste, but does not include buildings and structures. The liquid media includes groundwater, surface water, leachate and waste water.

    The Guide is an update of the 1996 document Technology Screening Guide for Radioactively Contaminated Site, EPA-402-R-96-017. New technologies have been added. The Guide is primarily targeted at Superfund or Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA) sites. It is hoped that it will be useful for other sites facing similar problems.

    The Guide is a snapshot in time and may be updated again in the future. If you have any comments on the document or suggestions for incorporation in future updates, please contact:

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Office of Radiation and Indoor Air Radiation Protection Division 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW (MC 6608J) Washington, DC 20460-0001 U.S. Phone: (202) 343-9290

  • iv

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  • v

    TABLE OF CONTENTS

    LIST OF EXHIBITS vii

    LIST OF APPENDICIES viii

    LIST OF ACRONYMS ix

    EXECUTIVE SUMMARY xi

    1.0 INTRODUCTION 1

    1.1 PURPOSE 1

    1.2 BACKGROUND 2

    1.3 GENERAL INFORMATION RELATED TO RADIOACTIVELY CONTAMINATED SITES 3 1.3.1 Types of Sites 3 1.3.2 Characteristics of Radioactively Contaminated NPL Sites 3 1.3.3 General Remedial Response Actions 5

    1.4 TECHNICAL APPROACH USED 6 1.4.1 Technologies Presented 6 1.4.2 Technology Profile Organization 7 1.4.3 Summaries of Technologies 8

    1.5 TECHNOLOGY INFORMATION RESOURCES ON THE WEB 18

    1.6 ORGANIZATION AND USE OF THIS GUIDE 19

    2.0 SOLID MEDIA TECHNOLOGY PROFILES 21

    2.1 CONTAINMENT TECHNOLOGIES 21 2.1.1 Capping 21 2.1.2 Land Encapsulation 27 2.1.3 Cryogenic Barriers 33

    2.1.4 Vertical Barriers 39

    2.2 SOLIDIFICATION/STABILIZATION 47 2.2.1 Cement Solidification/Stabilization 49 2.2.2 Chemical Solidification/Stabilization 57

    2.3 CHEMICAL SEPARATION TECHNOLOGIES 65 2.3.1 Solvent/Chemical Extraction 65

    2.4 PHYSICAL SEPARATION TECHNOLOGIES 73 2.4.1 Dry Soil Separation 73 2.4.2 Soil Washing 80 2.4.3 Flotation 88

    2.5 VITRIFICATION 92 2.5.1 In-Situ Vitrification 92

  • vi

    2.5.2 Ex-Situ Vitrification 99

    2.6 BIOLOGICAL TREATMENT 107 2.6.1 Phytoremediation 107

    3.0 LIQUID MEDIA TECHNOLOGY PROFILES 115

    3.1 CHEMICAL SEPARATION 115 3.1.1 Ion Exchange 115 3.1.2 Chemical Precipitation 123 3.1.3 Permeable Reactive Barriers 129

    3.2 PHYSICAL SEPARATION 138 3.2.1 Membrane Filtration 138 3.2.2 Adsorption 145 3.2.3 Aeration 150

    3.3 BIOLOGICAL TREATMENT 155 3.3.1 Phytoremediation 156

    3.4 NATURAL ATTENUATION 162 3.4.1 Monitored Natural Attenuation 162

    4.0 EMERGING TECHNOLOGIES 169

    4.1 ELECTROKINETICS 169

    4.2 SUPERCRITICAL FLUID EXTRACTION 170

    4.3 MAGNETIC SEPARATION 171

    4.4 BACTERIAL REDUCTION 173

    4.5 IN-SITU GASEOUS REDUCTION 174

  • vii

    LIST OF EXHIBITS

    Exhibit 1-1: Isotope Distribution at Radioactively Contaminated NPL Sites...............................4 Exhibit 1-2: NPL Sites by Radionuclide and Media .......................................................................5 Exhibit 1-3: Summary of Solid and Liquid Media Technologies...................................................9 Exhibit 1-4: Technologies Sorted by Applicable Media...............................................................16 Exhibit 1-5: Technologies Sorted by Radionuclide Type............................................................17 Exhibit 1-6: Using the Technology Profiles..................................................................................20 Exhibit 2-1: Typical Cap for Radioactive Waste...........................................................................22 Exhibit 2-2: Operating Characteristics of Capping......................................................................23 Exhibit 2-3: Cap Construction Costs ............................................................................................25 Exhibit 2-4: Land Encapsulation ...................................................................................................28 Exhibit 2-5: Operating Characteristics of Land Encapsulation ..................................................29 Exhibit 2-6: Cryogenic Barrier .......................................................................................................33 Exhibit 2-7: Operating Characteristics of Cryogenic Barriers....................................................35 Exhibit 2-8: Vertical Barriers..........................................................................................................40 Exhibit 2-9: Operating Characteristics of Vertical Barriers ........................................................41 Exhibit 2-10: Vertical Barrier Construction Costs .......................................................................43 Exhibit 2-11: Ex-Situ Solidification/Stabilization .........................................................................48 Exhibit 2-12: In-Situ Solidification/Stabilization...........................................................................48 Exhibit 2-13: Operating Characteristics of Cement Solidification/Stabilization .......................51 Exhibit 2-14: Operating Characteristics of Chemical Solidification/Stabilization.....................59 Exhibit 2-15: Solvent Extraction ....................................................................................................66 Exhibit 2-16: Operating Characteristics of Solvent/Chemical Extraction..................................68 Exhibit 2-17: Dry Soil Separation ..................................................................................................74 Exhibit 2-18: Operating Characteristics of Dry Soil Separation .................................................75 Exhibit 2-19: Performance of Segmented Gate System ..............................................................77 Exhibit 2-20: Soil Washing .............................................................................................................81 Exhibit 2-21: Operating Characteristics of Soil Washing............................................................83 Exhibit 2-22: Performance of Soil Washing..................................................................................84 Exhibit 2-23: Flotation ....................................................................................................................88 Exhibit 2-24: Operating Characteristics of Flotation ...................................................................89 Exhibit 2-25: In-situ Vitrification ....................................................................................................93 Exhibit 2-26: Operating

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