Document Details

Handling Depleted Uranium Alloy Powders: Health and Safety Considerations and Standard Operating Practices
Brown, L M [Martin Marietta Energy Systems, Inc., Oak Ridge, TN]; Brown, L M [Martin Marietta Energy Systems, Inc., Oak Ridge, TN]
Subject Terms:
nonpyrophoric, oxides; uranium, alloy, pyrophoric
Document Location:
DOE INFORMATION CENTER 1 Way, Oak Ridge, TN 37831; Eva Butler; Phone: 865-241-4780; Toll-Free: 800-382-6938, Option 6; FAX: 865-574-3521; Email:
Document Categories:
Health, Safety and Environment\Worker Health and Safety; Specific Material\Uranium
Document Type:
Publication Date:
1985 Sep 30
Declassification Status:
Never classified
Document Pages:
Accession Number:
Document Number(s):
Y/DZ-124; DE-ACO5-84OR21400; DEACO584OR21400
Originating Research Org.:
Martin Marietta Energy Systems, Incorporated
OpenNet Entry Date:
1998 Jun 16
This report presents a general overview of the safety and health aspects concerning the handling of both pyrophoric and nonpyrophoric uranium/uranium alloy powders and oxides; respectively, as applied by the Development Division at the Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant. Also included in this report are the equipment designs, operating procedures, and philosophy for handling these materials. Many depleted uranium and uranium alloy powders are pyrophoric which makes it necessary to handle these materials in an inert atmosphere. These powders have been determined to explode and/or ignite in atmospheres containing >20,000 ppm oxygen. The inert atmosphere should also be controlled well below the explosion limit for product purity. Depleted uranium is also radioactive and toxic, presenting a possible health hazard if not handled properly. Radiation safety involves monitoring employees and work locations, and using engineering and administrative techniques to maintain radiation exposures well below the recommended standards. These methods also serve as a means of minimizing uranium toxicity.

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