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Title: Efficiencies and Optimization of Weak Base Anion Ion-Exchange Resin for Groundwater Hexavalent Chromium Removal at Hanford

The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) contractor, CH2M HILL Plateau Remediation Company, has successfully converted a series of groundwater treatment facilities to use a new treatment resin that is delivering more than $3 million in annual cost savings and efficiency in treating groundwater contamination at the DOE Hanford Site in southeastern Washington State. During the production era, the nuclear reactors at the Hanford Site required a continuous supply of high-quality cooling water during operations. Cooling water consumption ranged from about 151,417 to 378,541 L/min (40,000 to 100,000 gal/min) per reactor, depending on specific operating conditions. Water from the Columbia River was filtered and treated chemically prior to use as cooling water, including the addition of sodium dichromate as a corrosion inhibitor. Hexavalent chromium was the primary component of the sodium dichromate and was introduced into the groundwater at the Hanford Site as a result of planned and unplanned discharges from the reactors starting in 1944. Groundwater contamination by hexavalent chromium and other contaminants related to nuclear reactor operations resulted in the need for groundwater remedial actions within the Hanford Site reactor areas. Beginning in 1995, groundwater treatment methods were evaluated, leading to the use of pump-and-treat facilities with ion exchangemore » using Dowex™ 21K, a regenerable, strong-base anion exchange resin. This required regeneration of the resin, which was performed offsite. In 2008, DOE recognized that regulatory agreements would require significant expansion for the groundwater chromium treatment capacity. As a result, CH2M HILL performed testing at the Hanford Site in 2009 and 2010 to demonstrate resin performance in the specific groundwater chemistry at different waste sites. The testing demonstrated that a weak-base anion, single-use resin, specifically ResinTech SIR-700 ®, was effective at removing chromium, had a significantly higher capacity, could be disposed of efficiently onsite, and would eliminate the complexities and programmatic risks from sampling, packaging, transportation, and return of resin for regeneration.« less
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  1. CH2M HILL Plateau Remediation Company, Richland, WA (United States)
  2. USDOE, Richland Operations Office, WA (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
TRN: US1400410
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Resource Relation:
Conference: WM2014 Waste Management Symposia, Phoenix, AZ (United States), 2-6 Mar 2014; Related Information: Number 14202
Research Org:
Hanford Site (HNF), Richland, WA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Environmental Management (EM)
Country of Publication:
United States