cost, so this criterion may not be independent of Criteria 2 and 3. Compliance with existing regulations is assumed by DOE and the committee, so comparison of environmental impacts beyond regulatory levels does not represent a relevant and useful discriminator among the three processes.

Criterion 7: Impacts of the Interfaces at the Defense Waste Processing Facility (DWPF). The major focus of this criterion is the process interface with the DWPF, and indirectly with the Saltstone Facility, primarily in terms of number of canisters of vitrified waste to be produced. The DWPF probably represents the most complex and schedule-sensitive operation. Technical modification of these interfaces to allow greater system flexibility would seem to be part of Criteria 4 and 5. In addition, the impact of the interface to DWPF will appear in schedule and costs, so this criterion does not appear to be independent of Criteria 1 through 3.

Criterion 8: Process Simplicity to Interfacing Systems. This is similar to the preceding criterion, and the impact of complexity of the interfaces will appear in schedule and costs.

Criterion 9: Levels of Safety Control Mitigation. As in the case of Criterion 6, regulatory approval will be on a “yes/no” basis, and DOE would only select a process that could be operated safely. The impact of any additional levels of safety control mitigation would appear under cost, so this does not appear to provide discrimination among the alternatives.

Criterion 10: Maximize Process Flexibility in Throughput. This criterion is closely related to several others, including Criterion 1 (schedule), Criteria 4 and 5 (technical), Criterion 7 (interfaces), and Criterion 8 (simplicity and interfaces). While the capability to increase throughput above that of the process design may be desirable for cost factors, such enhancement could have a negative impact on the interfaces with the DWPF and Saltstone operations. Hence, the use of this criterion as a discriminator appears to be in isolation of what should be an integrated system of waste processing. This criterion does not appear to discriminate among the alternatives.

Criterion 11: Maximize Process Simplicity (Operability). The role of simplicity in a process is closely coupled to other factors, including schedule (i.e., lower frequency of process upsets), interfaces with other system processes, and technical risk. However, this criterion may be useful in discriminating among extremes in operability and process complexity, especially where certain operations require very high precision in conditions such as temperature or concentrations.

FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

The purpose of this report is to address the first part of the committee 's charge: “evaluate the adequacy of the criteria that will be used by DOE to select from among the candidate processes under consideration.” The eleven criteria—and the goals under which DOE has grouped them—are reasonable and appropriate and were developed in a transparent way.

Finding: The committee finds that DOE's proposed criteria are an acceptable basis for selecting among the candidate processes under consideration; however, as noted



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EVALUATION OF CRITERIA FOR SELECTING A SALT PROCESSING ALTERNATIVE FOR HIGH-LEVEL WASTE AT THE SAVANNAH RIVER SITE: INTERIM REPORT cost, so this criterion may not be independent of Criteria 2 and 3. Compliance with existing regulations is assumed by DOE and the committee, so comparison of environmental impacts beyond regulatory levels does not represent a relevant and useful discriminator among the three processes. Criterion 7: Impacts of the Interfaces at the Defense Waste Processing Facility (DWPF). The major focus of this criterion is the process interface with the DWPF, and indirectly with the Saltstone Facility, primarily in terms of number of canisters of vitrified waste to be produced. The DWPF probably represents the most complex and schedule-sensitive operation. Technical modification of these interfaces to allow greater system flexibility would seem to be part of Criteria 4 and 5. In addition, the impact of the interface to DWPF will appear in schedule and costs, so this criterion does not appear to be independent of Criteria 1 through 3. Criterion 8: Process Simplicity to Interfacing Systems. This is similar to the preceding criterion, and the impact of complexity of the interfaces will appear in schedule and costs. Criterion 9: Levels of Safety Control Mitigation. As in the case of Criterion 6, regulatory approval will be on a “yes/no” basis, and DOE would only select a process that could be operated safely. The impact of any additional levels of safety control mitigation would appear under cost, so this does not appear to provide discrimination among the alternatives. Criterion 10: Maximize Process Flexibility in Throughput. This criterion is closely related to several others, including Criterion 1 (schedule), Criteria 4 and 5 (technical), Criterion 7 (interfaces), and Criterion 8 (simplicity and interfaces). While the capability to increase throughput above that of the process design may be desirable for cost factors, such enhancement could have a negative impact on the interfaces with the DWPF and Saltstone operations. Hence, the use of this criterion as a discriminator appears to be in isolation of what should be an integrated system of waste processing. This criterion does not appear to discriminate among the alternatives. Criterion 11: Maximize Process Simplicity (Operability). The role of simplicity in a process is closely coupled to other factors, including schedule (i.e., lower frequency of process upsets), interfaces with other system processes, and technical risk. However, this criterion may be useful in discriminating among extremes in operability and process complexity, especially where certain operations require very high precision in conditions such as temperature or concentrations. FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS The purpose of this report is to address the first part of the committee 's charge: “evaluate the adequacy of the criteria that will be used by DOE to select from among the candidate processes under consideration.” The eleven criteria—and the goals under which DOE has grouped them—are reasonable and appropriate and were developed in a transparent way. Finding: The committee finds that DOE's proposed criteria are an acceptable basis for selecting among the candidate processes under consideration; however, as noted