Video Aids Control of Nuclear Clean Up

Radiation-tolerant video cameras are being integrated with the Delta V control system to monitor liquid waste cleanup operations for the DOE’s Savannah River site.

An example of a radiation-tolerant video camera from IVC. Source: Industrial Video and Control.
An example of a radiation-tolerant video camera from IVC. Source: Industrial Video and Control.
Parsons Corporation, an engineering, construction, technical, and management services firm, is in the process of building the Salt Waste Processing Facility (SWPF) -- a plant designed to process liquid waste stored in underground tanks at the Savannah River Site.  At a rate of 6 million gallons per year, the SWPF facility will process 75 million gallons of salt waste currently stored in underground tanks at the Dept. of Energy’s Savannah River nuclear site near Augusta, GA. The SWPF will remove Caesium-137, Strontium-90, and actinides from the salt wastes. 
A key element of the clean up process being designed by Parsons involves the deployment of an array of video cameras from Industrial Video and Control (IVC). The cameras are being custom-designed by IVC for this project; fifty percent of the cameras being created for the facility are radiation tolerant. Video from the IVC cameras will be integrated into an Emerson Process Management DeltaV control system, where software from IVC will allow the video to be viewed on DeltaV Operate screens. IVC’s software will also be used to construct multiple multi-monitor views that can display a number of live video windows.
The cameras will monitor processing operations in the SWPF, allowing operators at the DeltaV consoles to watch over critical steps in the process and monitor the activities of workers in the area.  
The reactors at the Savannah River Site are no longer in operation. However, from 1953 to 1988 the site produced 36 metric tons of plutonium in five nuclear reactors for use in nuclear weapons. All solid and liquid waste that resulted form production are still stored there. Current plans call for clean up of radioactive materials at the site so that it can be used for other purposes. 
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