. "3. General Atomics Technology Package." Analysis of Engineering Design Studies for Demilitarization of Assembled Chemical Weapons at Pueblo Chemical Depot. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2001.
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Analysis of Engineering Design Studies for Demilitarization of Assembled Chemical Weapons at Pueblo Chemical Depot
FIGURE 3–2 Simplified block diagram of GATS process components. Source: Adapted from General Atomics, 2000a.
TABLE 3–1 Design Parameters for GATS ERH and PRH
Energetics Rotary Hydrolyzer (ERH)
Projectile Rotary Hydrolyzer (PRH)
Residence time (nominal) (hr)
Drum diameter (ft)
Drum length (ft)
Helical, 2.5-ft pitch/ 20 ft long
Helical, 2.5-ft pitch/ 40 ft long
To be determined
To be determined
Rotations per hr (nominal)
9 to 18
NaOH solution (12–20%) per pound of energetic (lb)
Process water per pound of munition (lb)
Source: Adapted from General Atomics, 2000a.
hydrolysis of the energetic materials in the munitions at Pueblo. Multiple energetic items and their associated materials are fed to the ERH at a rate that results in a maximum explosive loading per flight of about 15 lb TNT equivalent.
At the discharge end of the ERH, the remaining metal parts, which include nonhydrolyzed fuzes and booster cup components, are lifted out of the solution by the spiral flight and fed into a chute leading directly into a heated discharge conveyor (HDC, discussed in Step 6). Immediately upstream, the liquid hydrolysate is separated from metal parts by draining through a perforated section of the ERH drum and accumulated in a sump. The liquid discharge is configured to maintain a minimum depth of 12 inches in the ERH drum. The hydrolysate is pumped to a continuously stirred reactor, where additional hydrolysis can take place if necessary. The NaOH also dissolves any aluminum present in the munitions, converting it to aluminum hydroxide. To prevent clogging of downstream components by the aluminum hydroxide, phosphoric acid is added to form a phosphate precipitate, which is removed by settling or filtration.
Air is drawn through the ERH to remove hydrolysis vapor and fumes, including hydrogen produced from the hydrolysis of aluminum in the munitions. Sufficient air is used to keep the hydrogen concentration well below the lower explosive limit. The air is passed through an air-treatment system con-