Executive Summary

The purpose of this study was to identify and evaluate technologies developed or refined outside the United States that could be useful in future non-stockpile chemical warfare materiel recovery and destruction operations conducted by the U.S. Army. Candidate technologies could offer complementary capabilities or even replace current equipment or approaches. The statement of task for this study charged the Committee on Review and Evaluation of International Technologies for the Destruction of Non-Stockpile Chemical Materiel with evaluating international systems, facilities, and disposal technologies currently employed or under development in countries that need them for the treatment and destruction of inventories of non-stockpile materiel. The committee was to compare those international technologies with the technologies used in the current U.S. non-stockpile chemical weapon recovery and destruction program (which are described in Chapter 1). In early committee meetings, the U.S. Army’s non-stockpile staff also asked the committee to report on any promising international technologies for assessment of chemical weapon burial sites and the assessment of recovered chemical munitions.

The United States is a signatory to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), which prohibits the use of chemical weapons and mandates the elimination of existing declared stockpiles by April 29, 2007, with the possibility of a 5-year extension. This mandate applies to chemical warfare materiel (CWM) that has been recovered from sites where it had in the past been buried. In the United States, such material is referred to as non-stockpile chemical warfare materiel (NSCWM). The CWC requires the declaration and destruction of such materiel within the CWC treaty deadline if it is unearthed prior to the deadline. The CWC allows signatory nations to exclude this CWM as long as the materiel remains buried. However, when this CWM is unearthed, it becomes recovered CWM, or RCWM, and must be destroyed. The CWC allows some negotiation of the timetable for the disposal of declared CWM, although generally it should be “destroyed as soon as possible.”

As of 1996, the U.S. Army had located 168 potential CWM burial sites at 63 locations in 31 states, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the District of Columbia. The universe of buried non-stockpile CWM includes several sites where large amounts of buried CWM are located—Redstone Arsenal, Alabama; Rocky Mountain Arsenal, Colorado; Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland; and Deseret Chemical Depot, Utah. Medium to large amounts of buried CWM may exist at several other sites.

Obsolete chemical weapons that have been in storage since the decades following World War II constitute the U.S. chemical stockpile and are differentiated from non-stockpile materiel. Facilities in the United States that have been constructed to destroy this stockpile employ assembly line systems for separating the agent from the munition. This is feasible because the munitions are overwhelmingly in a good and consistent condition. Leakers and other occasional nonuniform munitions that are periodically encountered can cause problems out of proportion to their numbers, however.

Non-stockpile munitions, by contrast, are more typically characterized by their poor condition from having been buried for decades. As in the United States, munitions recovered from burial sites (and battlefields) in Germany, Belgium, Italy, and France exhibit a lack of uniformity regarding geometry, agent type, fired, fuzed, empty, full, corroded, and country of origin. A major focus of this study was to learn how these countries are now dealing with the recovery and destruction of these munitions and what, if any, new technologies they are considering implementing in the future. In these countries, no assembly line system exists for disassembling recovered munitions to separate the explosive from the agent. Any disassembly that has taken place has utilized various approaches, including manual positioning in machines, automatic cutting, and manual emptying of agent.

The committee considered two approaches for removing munitions from large burial sites. It concluded (see Chapter 2) that a remove-and-dispose approach is to be preferred



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Review of International Technologies for Destruction of Recovered Chemical Warfare Materiel Executive Summary The purpose of this study was to identify and evaluate technologies developed or refined outside the United States that could be useful in future non-stockpile chemical warfare materiel recovery and destruction operations conducted by the U.S. Army. Candidate technologies could offer complementary capabilities or even replace current equipment or approaches. The statement of task for this study charged the Committee on Review and Evaluation of International Technologies for the Destruction of Non-Stockpile Chemical Materiel with evaluating international systems, facilities, and disposal technologies currently employed or under development in countries that need them for the treatment and destruction of inventories of non-stockpile materiel. The committee was to compare those international technologies with the technologies used in the current U.S. non-stockpile chemical weapon recovery and destruction program (which are described in Chapter 1). In early committee meetings, the U.S. Army’s non-stockpile staff also asked the committee to report on any promising international technologies for assessment of chemical weapon burial sites and the assessment of recovered chemical munitions. The United States is a signatory to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), which prohibits the use of chemical weapons and mandates the elimination of existing declared stockpiles by April 29, 2007, with the possibility of a 5-year extension. This mandate applies to chemical warfare materiel (CWM) that has been recovered from sites where it had in the past been buried. In the United States, such material is referred to as non-stockpile chemical warfare materiel (NSCWM). The CWC requires the declaration and destruction of such materiel within the CWC treaty deadline if it is unearthed prior to the deadline. The CWC allows signatory nations to exclude this CWM as long as the materiel remains buried. However, when this CWM is unearthed, it becomes recovered CWM, or RCWM, and must be destroyed. The CWC allows some negotiation of the timetable for the disposal of declared CWM, although generally it should be “destroyed as soon as possible.” As of 1996, the U.S. Army had located 168 potential CWM burial sites at 63 locations in 31 states, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the District of Columbia. The universe of buried non-stockpile CWM includes several sites where large amounts of buried CWM are located—Redstone Arsenal, Alabama; Rocky Mountain Arsenal, Colorado; Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland; and Deseret Chemical Depot, Utah. Medium to large amounts of buried CWM may exist at several other sites. Obsolete chemical weapons that have been in storage since the decades following World War II constitute the U.S. chemical stockpile and are differentiated from non-stockpile materiel. Facilities in the United States that have been constructed to destroy this stockpile employ assembly line systems for separating the agent from the munition. This is feasible because the munitions are overwhelmingly in a good and consistent condition. Leakers and other occasional nonuniform munitions that are periodically encountered can cause problems out of proportion to their numbers, however. Non-stockpile munitions, by contrast, are more typically characterized by their poor condition from having been buried for decades. As in the United States, munitions recovered from burial sites (and battlefields) in Germany, Belgium, Italy, and France exhibit a lack of uniformity regarding geometry, agent type, fired, fuzed, empty, full, corroded, and country of origin. A major focus of this study was to learn how these countries are now dealing with the recovery and destruction of these munitions and what, if any, new technologies they are considering implementing in the future. In these countries, no assembly line system exists for disassembling recovered munitions to separate the explosive from the agent. Any disassembly that has taken place has utilized various approaches, including manual positioning in machines, automatic cutting, and manual emptying of agent. The committee considered two approaches for removing munitions from large burial sites. It concluded (see Chapter 2) that a remove-and-dispose approach is to be preferred

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Review of International Technologies for Destruction of Recovered Chemical Warfare Materiel to a remove-store (in an intermediate holding facility)-dispose approach. The remove-and-dispose approach would minimize handling and storage of potentially deteriorated munitions, thus lowering risks. Current technologies used by the U.S. Army’s Non-Stockpile Chemical Materiel Project (NSCMP) will also be applicable to the destruction of munitions recovered in the future. However, these technologies are limited in terms of the size of munition they can handle and their processing rate. The NSCMP’s explosive destruction system (EDS) is a well-proven system, but individual units can only deal with relatively small munitions at a slow rate. Other technologies are suited only to deal with small quantities of agent, e.g., chemical agent identification sets (CAIS). Therefore, one goal of this study was to identify international technologies that would destroy recovered munitions at a faster rate than existing NSCMP technologies in the event that the Department of Defense (DOD) decides, as a matter of policy or as required by law, to remove large numbers of buried CWM within a relatively short period of time. In selecting these technologies, DOD would benefit from consultation with regulators and public stakeholders, particularly because of the close relationship between the choice of technology and the rate at which buried CWM can be recovered and destroyed. EVALUATION CRITERIA The committee attempted to focus its evaluation activities on the international chemical materiel destruction technologies that appeared to be most promising. This selection was accomplished using a tiered matrix (described in Chapter 1). The more promising technologies were placed in Tier 1 and were evaluated in detail, whereas other technologies were placed in Tier 2 and received either a lesser or only a cursory evaluation. The committee concentrated its efforts on destruction technologies suited to anticipated situations for non-stockpile CWM that has yet to be recovered. In particular, the committee was interested in examining technologies that could be implemented at sites where large quantities of buried materiel can be expected and where, consequently, higher throughputs might be desired than are achievable with current NSCMP equipment. The committee further divided the technologies into (1) those that could treat an entire munition and (2) those that destroy agent only. In evaluating the Tier 1 technologies, the following evaluation factors were employed: Process maturity. This factor is used to assess whether a particular technology has been sufficiently developed and has accumulated enough operational experience so that it can be reasonably claimed that all significant issues are understood and operation of the technology is routine. Process efficacy/throughput. This factor is used to assess whether a particular technology is fully effective in achieving its task and how efficient it is in destroying munitions or agent in terms of processing rate and/or the maximum size of munition that can be handled. Process safety. This factor is used to assess whether the technology is safe to operate, presuming that the design criteria are not exceeded and the defined operating procedures are followed. Public and regulatory acceptability in a U.S. context. This factor is used to assess whether, even though the technology may be in use in another country, it is likely to be acceptable to local community stakeholders in this country and jurisdictional regulatory bodies with specific environmental and political concerns. Secondary waste issues. This factor is used to assess whether any secondary waste streams generated by the technology present a particular problem in terms of disposal and treatment. Costs associated with purchasing and operating a given technology would also be a significant criterion, but the committee did not have access to capital or operating cost data. TIER 1 INTERNATIONAL TECHNOLOGIES FOR MUNITION PROCESSING The three international technologies assigned to Tier 1 are described and discussed in Chapter 4. They do not disassemble the munition and separate the agent and the explosive but rely instead on destroying the munition and its contents in their entirety and without disassembly. They do this in one of two distinct ways: Cold detonation, in which an explosive donor charge is placed around the munition. The munition(s) is placed within an explosive containment structure and the donor charge detonated. The resulting pressure, temperature, and fireball destroy the explosive and agent. Offgases pass to a treatment system. In the technology summaries that follow, the controlled detonation chamber (CDC) and DAVINCH (detonation of ammunition in a vacuum integrated chamber) work this way. Hot detonation, in which the munition is inserted into a hot kiln (externally heated). The temperature in the kiln results in a deflagration, detonation, or burning of the munition’s explosive fill, again followed by agent destruction. Offgases pass to a treatment system. In the technology summaries that follow, the Dynasafe static kiln works this way. Table ES-1 provides summary ratings of these Tier 1 international munitions processing technologies for the five evaluation factors noted above as well as comparative rat-

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Review of International Technologies for Destruction of Recovered Chemical Warfare Materiel TABLE ES-1 Evaluation Factor Rating Comparison of Tier 1 Munitions Processing Technologies with U.S. EDS Technology Evaluation Factors (Ratinga)b Process Maturity Process Efficacy/Throughput Process Safety Public and Regulatory Acceptability in a U.S. Context Secondary Waste Issues U.S. EDS + + + + 0 CDC + + + 0 0 DAVINCH + + + 0c + Dynasafe + +d + 0 0 aLegend: +, acceptable; 0, partially acceptable; , unacceptable; ?, inadequate information. bCosts associated with purchasing and operating a given technology would also be a significant criterion, but the committee did not have access to capital or operating cost data. cDAVINCH is more likely to be acceptable to the public than the CDC and Dynasafe because of its demonstrated ability to hold and test waste gases, but it has not yet been permitted (see the section “Public and Regulatory Acceptability in a U.S. Context” in Chapter 4). dRating is contingent on the ability of the Dynasafe process control system to confirm agent destruction in all munitions that do contain agent. ings for the U.S. Army’s EDS. Please refer to Chapter 3 for a full explanation of the criteria and ranking symbols used by the committee. Refer to the text of Chapter 4 (and to Appendix B) to learn what kind of information formed the basis for a particular ranking. Table ES-2 briefly provides engineering parameters that contributed to the rankings for the detonation technologies and the NSCMP EDS technology that are given in Table ES-1. Controlled Detonation Chamber Technology The CDC, an earlier version of which was originally developed in the United States, was subsequently refined in Europe and is being used there, particularly in Belgium and, to a lesser extent, in the United Kingdom. It has three main components: a blast chamber, an expansion chamber, and an emissions control unit. The blast chamber, in which the detonation occurs, is connected to a larger expansion chamber. A projectile wrapped in explosive is mounted in the blast chamber. The floor of the chamber is covered with pea gravel, which absorbs some of the blast energy. Bags containing water are suspended near the projectile to help absorb blast energy and to produce steam, which reacts with agent vapors. After the explosive is detonated in the blast chamber, the gases are vented to the emissions control system. Systems with capacities ranging from 12 pounds of TNT-equivalent (the T-10 model) to 60 pounds of TNT-equivalent (TC-60 model) have been constructed and operated. The latest versions incorporate a mechanical system to move explosive-encased munitions from the preparation area into the blast chamber. The offgas treatment system includes a reactive-bed filter to remove acidic gases and a porous ceramic filter to collect particulates like soot and dust from the pea gravel. A catalytic oxidation (CATOX) unit oxidizes CO and organic vapors from the gas stream before it is vented through a carbon adsorption bed. The CDC appears to be well suited for destroying a range of either chemical or conventional munitions. It has been used in a production mode by the Belgian military to destroy RCWM at its test facility at Poelkapelle. At the time this report was being prepared, development work on the CDC was continuing to demonstrate the usefulness of the CDC for recovered chemical operations in the United States. The destruction efficiency of the post-detonation environment in the blast and expansion chambers appears to be over 99 percent. No published overall destruction and removal efficiency (DRE) figure has been found, but available information indicates that the CDC is capable of achieving DREs of greater than 99.9999 percent, a satisfactorily high number in the opinion of the committee. The CDC does not, however, qualify as a hold-and-test system like the EDS (described in Chapter 1) because the CDC is a flow-through system and offgases are not held and analyzed before release. Because there is no time-consuming neutralization step as in the EDS, the CDC’s throughput could be much higher than that of the EDS, which conducts only one detonation every other day. The EDS-1 can handle three mortar rounds per shot, and the EDS-2 has destroyed as many as six rounds per shot. The CDC has demonstrated destruction of two munitions per shot and could potentially destroy 40 projectiles per 10-hour shift. The current CDC also has the advantage of generating little or no liquid waste that requires subsequent processing, in contrast with the significant neutralent and rinsate effluents produced by the EDS. Pea gravel is a secondary waste that must be disposed of. Manual operations are now minimized by slipping precast donor explosives over the projectile and mechanically moving the round into the detonation chamber. The substitution of hot air purging for washing the chamber and detonation debris with decontamination solution eliminated a set of operations that probably posed a significant risk of exposure to chemical agent.

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Review of International Technologies for Destruction of Recovered Chemical Warfare Materiel TABLE ES-2 Specific Engineering Parameters for Existing Munitions Processing Technologies Technology Model Throughput Rate Destruction Verification Capability Largest Munition Reliability/Operability Transportability EDS-2 1 detonation every other day; up to 6 munitions per detonation Liquid and gaseous effluents can be held and tested before release 5 lb TNT-equivalent; wide range of weapons acceptance; maximum: 155-mm projectile; physical size of munition determines throughput rate Extensive experience with chemical munitions Fully transportable; 1 trailer CDC (TC-60) Up to 20 detonations per 10-hr shift; estimated potential throughput given by technology proponent as 22-40/day; actual will be determined in 2006 Monitoring of offgas prior to release to carbon filter system 60 lb TNT-equivalent; 210-mm projectile Extensive experience with conventional munitions; has demonstrated reliability; 4 years experience in production mode without failure Transportable on 8 tractor trailers DAVINCH (DV-60) Yellow bombs: 9/day Red bombs: 18/day 75-mm, 90-mm munitions: 36/day Detonation gases held in tank and tested for agent before decision made to release or provide additional treatment 65 lb TNT-equivalent; expected to be an 8-in. projectile or a small bomb Experience with destruction of 600 Japanese Red and Yellow chemical bombs containing various agents DV-60 designed to be a fixed facility, not transportable Dynasafe (SK2000) Varies greatly with munition and operating mode; if used as an open system (continuous mode), sample throughput rates are 20/day for 8-in. projectile, 40/day for 155-mm projectile, 120/day for 105-mm projectile and 4.2-in. mortar round Open system (continuous mode): none prior to offgas treatment; closed system (batch mode): hold and test in expansion tank 5 lb TNT-equivalent; 8-in. projectile, if fragment shield used to protect chamber; up to 750-lb bomb if most of agent is drained first Extensive experience with conventional munitions; some experience with German chemical munitions SK2000 designed to be a fixed facility, not transportable DAVINCH Technology The DAVINCH technology, developed by Kobe Steel in Japan, uses a large detonation chamber in which chemical munitions and their contents are destroyed when donor charges surrounding the munitions are detonated under a near vacuum. Although the process does not require use of a reagent to destroy the agent—accomplished by a shock wave, expansion and thermal heating from the detonation gases, and a fireball in the chamber—offgases are produced that require some secondary treatment, e.g., combustion and filtration. DAVINCH technology has been used in Japan to destroy 600 Japanese chemical bombs, some containing a mustard agent/lewisite mixture and others containing vomiting agents. The technology has not been used in the United States to destroy non-stockpile chemical munitions. The size and explosion containment capabilities of versions of the DAVINCH technology are substantially greater than those of the largest treatment technology used in the United States for RCWM (the EDS-2), and its throughput also exceeds that of the EDS-2 by a factor of at least 3. It has demonstrated the ability to destroy over 80 pounds of agent (a lewisite/mustard agent mix in two Japanese Yellow bombs) in a single application and to have destroyed 10.14 pounds of explosive (picric acid) in these bombs. The DAVINCH technology appears to be safe and effective. The detonation of an externally placed explosive charge allows DAVINCH to be used to open agent-filled containers, inert munitions, and munitions containing energetics in order to access and destroy the agent. DAVINCH is larger and less mobile than the EDS-2, although a transportable version is under development.

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Review of International Technologies for Destruction of Recovered Chemical Warfare Materiel Although the specific application of the DAVINCH to meeting future U.S. non-stockpile disposal needs will depend on the nature of the items to be disposed of, DAVINCH technology has potential applicability at those U.S. sites where a temporary facility can be placed and used to dispose of medium to large quantities (hundreds to thousands) of items that either contain chemical agent or are agent contaminated. It is probably not cost-effective as a disposal technology for items unlikely to contain agent, e.g., containers that have been previously burnt out, or for small quantities of smaller chemical items, e.g., bomblets or small-caliber projectiles where the EDS technology would have greater applicability. Dynasafe Technology Dynasafe is the trade name for a static kiln manufactured by Dynasafe AB, a Swedish company. The kiln is a near-sphere, armored, dual-walled, high-alloy stainless steel detonation chamber (heated retort) inside a containment structure. The total wall thickness, including a safety layer, is 15 cm. The detonation chamber can operate in a pyrolytic or oxidizing environment. Intact munitions are indirectly heated by electrical resistance elements between the inner and outer walls of the detonation chamber. The munitions are heated to 400C-600C, resulting in deflagration, detonation, or burning of the munition’s explosive fill. The chemical agent in the munition is destroyed as a result of the shock wave from the detonation, the resulting gas pressure (measured at 10 bars, or 9.87 atmospheres), and the heat within the detonation chamber. No explosive donor charge is used, nor is a reagent needed to neutralize the agent. The kiln operates in a semibatch mode. Chemical munitions are placed in a cardboard box or carrier, which is transported to the top of the kiln. The boxed munitions are fed into the kiln through two loading chambers, each having its own door. The boxed munitions are dropped onto a heated (500C-550C) shrapnel (scrap) bed at the bottom of the detonation chamber. If sufficient energy from energetics in the munition is released, no additional external heating from the electrical resistance elements is required. If the munition does not contain energetics, additional heat can be provided by the electrical resistance elements. The Dynasafe technology has been demonstrated to be effective in destroying small conventional munitions and explosives, in destroying some chemical agents, and in destroying mustard-agent-filled, explosively configured German grenades. The technology could be viable for disposing of U.S. non-stockpile chemical munitions provided that continued operation at the German GEKA testing facility (ongoing as this report was being prepared) demonstrates its ability to safely and effectively access the agent in German munitions, destroy a variety of chemical agents, and process secondary wastes. The Dynasafe technology could find application at U.S. sites where fairly large numbers of chemical munitions, such as bomblets, mines, 105-mm projectiles, and 155-mm projectiles, need to be recovered and where effective use could be made of its high throughput. Its limited explosive containment capacity, however, limits it to destroying items containing up to 5 pounds TNT-equivalent, about the same as the EDS-2. This limited capacity also means a Dynasafe operator may not introduce into the detonation chamber high explosive rounds that would exceed the chamber’s explosive containment capacity. Even with a 100 percent safety marginallowing up to 10 pounds TNT-equivalent of explosive loadingthe detonation of such rounds could reduce the life of the chamber and, in the worst case, severely damage it. The Dynasafe technology depends on heat rather than donor charges to detonate energetics within a munition and to access the agent fill. This process is expected to be effective for chemical munitions that contain energetics but may be more problematic for inert chemical munitions if the munition emerges from the detonation chamber intact and if in situ agent destruction cannot be confirmed. If it can be demonstrated that agent destruction does take place regardless of the munition configuration (energetics vs. inert) or the condition of the munition following treatment in the detonation chamber (intact vs. in fragments), then the Dynasafe static kiln can be an effective and flexible technology for destroying large quantities of chemical munitions, within its explosive containment and munition size constraints. TIER 1 INTERNATIONAL TECHNOLOGIES FOR AGENT-ONLY PROCESSING Two technologies were identified as Tier 1 international technologies for agent-only processing. These are briefly described below and fully covered in Chapter 5 (with additional information given in Appendix C). Russian Two-Stage Process: Neutralization with Addition of Bitumen For destruction of nerve agents, the focus in Russia in recent years has been on a two-stage technology for neutralizing the agent (Stage 1) and adding the neutralent to bitumen to form a stabilized mass (Stage 2) that can be safely stored for indefinitely long periods of time. Procedures have been developed for the nerve agents VX, VR (the Russian version of VX), GB, and GD and for mustard agent. A facility that will use the two-stage process is being built at Shchuch’ye in Russia to destroy much of the 30,000 metric tons of nerve agent stored there. A pilot facility with a capacity of 500 metric tons per year will be built and then expanded to 1,200 metric tons per year. Joint Russian-U.S. laboratory testing carried out to evaluate the process resulted in its acceptance for the destruction of nerve agents in Russia.

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Review of International Technologies for Destruction of Recovered Chemical Warfare Materiel Incineration Incineration is a well-developed technology that has been shown to be effective for destroying stockpiled chemical weapons. At present, incineration is being used in Germany and the United Kingdom for destroying recovered chemical weapons. The U.S. Army and its contractors have developed very advanced and sophisticated incineration technology for the destruction of the U.S. chemical weapons stockpile. However, the desired complete conversion of the carbon and hydrogen in organic compounds to carbon dioxide and water is generally not achievable using incineration technology. Instead, trace amounts of compounds such as dioxins, furans, and other products of incomplete combustion can be generated during the combustion process and must be controlled in an offgas treatment system. This characteristic of the incineration processes has been a source of difficulty in gaining public acceptance for this technology, especially from stakeholders in local communities and environmental interest groups. The baseline incineration process employed by the U.S. Army to destroy stockpiled chemical weapons that are in reasonably good condition is not useful for the destruction of non-stockpile chemical weapons because the deteriorated condition of the latter will not allow their disassembly with the existing equipment. The committee postulates that any use of incineration by the United States in the future for destroying recovered chemical weapons (other than, of course, the use of the currently operating baseline incineration facilities to destroy the U.S. stockpile) would be done only as a last resort in special situations and would be primarily for the destruction of agent stored in bulk containers or recovered from bombs and other weapons. TIER 2 INTERNATIONAL TECHNOLOGIES FOR MUNITIONS PROCESSING The committee considered a number of additional technologies but judged them not to be as promising as the Tier 1 technologies previously discussed. These Tier 2 technologies are listed below and are described and discussed in Chapter 6. The following Tier 2 processes for destroying complete munitions are examined: Acid digestion (France), Bulk vitrification (United Kingdom), and Firing pool (France). Six Tier 2 processes for destroying only agent from recovered CWM are examined: Biological approaches (several countries), DSTL electric furnace (United Kingdom), Electrochemical oxidation (United Kingdom and United States), Photocatalysis (Scotland), Plasma arc (Switzerland), and Plasmazon (Germany). OTHER TECHNOLOGIES RELEVANT TO NON-STOCKPILE OPERATIONS In the course of researching international CWM treatment technologies, the committee also identified and compiled information on technologies used to detect, assess, access, and remediate the contents of large burial sites. These sites have not been thoroughly characterized and their exact contents remain unknown. This effort was not included in the statement of task. However, in early committee meetings, the committee was asked by NSCMP staff to report on the existence of any promising international technologies that it encountered during its information gathering for assessing chemical weapon burial sites and accessing recovered chemical munitions. DOD is a leader in the research and practice of detecting subsurface munitions and explosives of concern using geophysical processes. Since the mid-1980s, there have been numerous investigation and remediation projects for conventional (high-explosive) munitions and explosives of concern under various DOD programs such as the base realignment and closure program and the formerly used defense sites program. Since that time, geophysical techniques and technologies for the detection of subsurface munitions and explosives of concern have been developed. It is now possible to detect individual or mass buried munitions and explosives of concern, with magnetometry and active geophysical systems being the most common and productive technologies. In addition, DOD has programs supporting research and development in this technical area. However, the technical challenges associated with assessing the contents of large, identified chemical munitions burial sites have not been specifically addressed. The committee’s research into foreign technology did not reveal any potential breakthroughs in this area using geophysical sensors. Some sensing technologies should be investigated further. One is the use of chemical agent detector dogs to locate subsurface buried CWM. The U.S. Bureau of Customs and Border Protection is using chemical detector dogs to detect CWM. These dogs have a detection capability three to five orders of magnitude greater than that of today’s best instruments. The committee also found that the United Kingdom plans to conduct tests at Porton Down to determine the effectiveness of chemical agent detector dogs. There are also some potentially useful agent-sensing technologies that do not rely on biological sensors. These new devices may offer greater simplicity in measurement, rapid analysis, and continuous measurement. One group of

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Review of International Technologies for Destruction of Recovered Chemical Warfare Materiel new sensors is known as electronic or artificial noses. An array of semiselective, cross-reactive sensors produces a response pattern characteristic of a chemical. The patterns are preprogrammed mathematically so that upon exposure, they can be matched to the chemicals sensed. Japan is planning to use a telerobotic and automated system for excavating, handling, and disposing of 300,000 to 400,000 World War II-era CWM abandoned by Japan at the large burial site at Haerbaling, Jinlin Province, China. For this project, the Japanese are designing a combination remotely operated and automated excavation system consisting of excavation robots, a device to remove attached soil using pressurized air, and an automated transportation system that will take the removed CWM through a series of cleaning and assessment stations and then finally to a packing station and temporary storage. KEY FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS Finding 4-1. The U.S. Army’s EDS, although proven to be safe and effective, has a low throughput rate, is limited in the size of the munitions it can handle, and generates a liquid waste stream that must be disposed of. Consequently, while it will continue to have application for small quantities of munitions, EDS would be expected to have limited applicability to the destruction of the anticipated large quantities and variety of munitions and agent-contaminated items expected to be found at large burial sites in the United States. Finding 4-2. Detonation-type technologies offer complementary capabilities to the EDS and all have the following characteristics: There is no agent neutralization step. All are total solutions—that is, they all access the agent, destroy the energetics and agent, and decontaminate the munition bodies. All require secondary thermal or catalytic treatment of offgases. All have a higher throughput than the EDS and the same or greater explosive containment capability. All have been operated safely. Recommendation 4-1. The U.S. Army should select a detonation-type technology as the method for destroying recovered chemical munitions excavated from a large burial site, although the EDS will continue to have application, especially at small sites. In view of the rapidly evolving development efforts on the three international detonation-type technologies, the U.S. Army should monitor the operations and capabilities of these technologies and collect cost and performance data with the goal of selecting one of them as the primary technology. Recommendation 4-2. To further the evaluation of detonation-type technologies for non-stockpile applications, the U.S. Army should establish accepted procedures that effectively and efficiently determine the degree of agent destruction or in some other way measure the performance of these processes. The procedures should involve the feeding of complete munitions to the processthat is, munitions containing either agent or a chemical surrogate that is more difficult to destroy than the chemical agent that is most resistant to destruction. Both the degree of agent destruction in the actual detonation event and the degree of agent destruction in the system overall should be determined. Such procedures should be developed with input from all of the relevant stakeholders.