thoroughly in Chapter 3) were developed at CMA disposal facilities and will be adopted for use at the ACWA facilities. While they have allowed safe waste processing and closure activities, these methods are time consuming and indirect, generally relying on vapor-phase agent measurements over confined surfaces, rather than direct detection of surface contamination.

Chapter 3 also summarizes the characteristics and estimated magnitudes of potentially contaminated secondary waste streams that will be generated during both process operations and closure activities at BGCAPP and PCAPP. Based on current understanding of probable agents/munitions processing and closure activities at the ACWA facilities, six scenarios developed by the committee are presented in which real-time agent contamination measurements on surfaces or bulk materials might allow more efficient, and possibly safer, operations.

The recent rapid development of ambient ionization mass spectrometric techniques for real-time surface and bulk materials analyses is reviewed in Chapter 4. An assessment of the capability of these techniques to provide highly sensitive and specific real-time measurements of the chemical agents relevant to ACWA demilitarization activities is presented, and implementations of the technologies relevant to selected Chapter 3 scenarios are evaluated, in Chapter 4. The ability of these methods to perform real-time chemical agent vapor concentration measurements is also explored.

Chapter 5 assesses the statistical measurement challenges inherent in both current vapor-phase chemical agent monitoring and potential ambient ionization surface/bulk agent contamination measurements. Statistical constraints on real-time sampling methods pertinent to the agent contamination scenarios presented in Chapter 3 are discussed and assessed in Chapter 5. Two appendixes associated with Chapter 5 present statistical methods that can be used to develop and evaluate potential chemical agent contamination measurement strategies.

The remainder of this chapter summarizes salient points from Chapters 2 to 5 in conjunction with a reiteration of the findings and recommendations presented in those earlier chapters, and it concludes with an assessment of the potential value of ambient ionization mass spectrometry for prospective ACWA chemical weapons demilitarization activities.

FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

The initial finding of this report (2-1) points out the indirect nature of the methods that CMA developed for detecting and assessing chemical agent contamination of materials, and that ACWA plans to use during agent processing and plant closure operations. Closely related Finding 2-2 recognizes a recent CDC recommendation that CMA establish a health-based surface agent contamination hazard level for use with wipe samples of agent-contaminated surfaces interrogated during closure activities. The committee observes that such a standard, coupled with new capabilities for real-time direct surface contamination measurements, could also serve ACWA well.

Finding 2-1. The prevalent Army demilitarization activity methods of detecting materials’ surface contamination involve enclosing materials and monitoring headspace



The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement