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Since 1982 the melting of low-level radioactive metal has been assessed within the framework of the research programmes on the decommissioning of nuclear installations. To date, approx. 3,500 t of steel components with very low contamination levels, originating from the refurbishing and dismantling of various nuclear installations in Germany, have been treated by melting. 95% of the radioactivity was due to Co-60 and Cs-137, with an average ratio of 60:40. This may be different for components from other NPPs. If very little or no fuel element damage has occurred, the proportion of Cs-137 should be lower. After melting, Cs was found in slag and filter dust whereas Co-60 remained mainly in the ingot (90 - 99%). In 1989 a particular melting facility (CARLA) was erected at Siempelkamp, Krefeld (Germany), allowing the treatment of components contaminated up to 200 Bq/g (beta - gamma) in a controllable area. To date, approx. 2,000 t of steel components (mainly mild steel) have been melted in this facility, and to a large extent recycled for other nuclear needs such as transport, disposal containers and biological shielding.

Additional information

Authors: SAPPOK M, Stempelkamp Giesserei GmbH & Co., Krefeld (DE);PFLUGRAD K, CEC Bruxelles (BE)
Bibliographic Reference: Paper presented: INMM, 32nd Annual Meeting, New Orleans (US), July 28-31, 1991
Availability: Available from (1) as Paper EN 36357 ORA
Record Number: 199111207 / Last updated on: 1994-12-02
Original language: en
Available languages: en
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