Trust Noah Chemicals’ decades of experience
When companies, organizations and agencies need to solve complex chemical problems, they turn to Noah. Our chemists have a deep understanding of chemical compositions and offer innovative, effective solutions – often with very short turnaround. Get to know us better by reading two of our case studies below.
In the aftermath of a recent earthquake – followed by a tsunami in one of our partner countries, the Nuclear Power Plant experienced catastrophic failure in several of its reactors. Officials at the plant began flooding the failed reactors with water to prevent the reactor cores from completely melting down, in an effort to avoid the type of large explosion that had occurred at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in 1986.
Plant officials soon realized that the water they were using to flood the reactor cores was leaking from the containment vessels. They recognized the urgent need to collect this leaked water, since it had been contaminated with radioactive cesium and strontium, and to capture and remove the radioactive elements from it.
The best way to treat water that has been contaminated with radioactive material is to utilize a molecular sieve or ion exchange media. Once it has passed through the sieve and its radioactive elements have been captured, the cleaned water can safely be stored (in this case, onsite at the power plant).
Our customer of over 20 years was awarded the project in creating the media that would capture the radioactive components of the contaminated water at the Nuclear Power Plant. In winning the business our customer needed an immediate, reliable and on-demand supplier of raw materials. Our customer naturally turned to Noah for their chemical needs, and we have been their supplier of choice ever since. In a situation where time is of the essence and safety and accuracy are paramount, no other company is able to cater to their needs as quickly and comprehensively as Noah.
Noah has worked closely with the United States Department of Energy’s (DOE) national laboratories for over 20 years, supporting their efforts to immobilize nuclear waste. These efforts center around a process called “vitrification”, where sodium borate, silica and other materials are added to a water-based slurry of nuclear waste to form a glass substance; this substance effectively contains the radioactive material in the waste, thereby inactivating it.
Since 1999, Noah has been developing testing materials called “surrogate nuclear waste” to assist the DOE in their vitrification program. This surrogate waste mimics the chemical properties of nuclear waste, but is not radioactive, which allows for more flexibility with regard to testing.
Noah has done development work for many different DOE sites, including the West Valley Demonstration Project, the Savannah River Site, the Idaho National Laboratory and the Los Alamos National Laboratory. But the site at which we have provided the most comprehensive assistance is the Hanford Reservation Project in Washington State. The largest nuclear waste site in the United States, Hanford contains over 150 tanks ranging in size from 100,000 gallons to 1,000,000 gallons. Adding to the challenge is the fact that the waste within each individual tank is different.
Our expertise enables us to mimic the waste from each tank and determine the various metals and components that are contained in it. Based on that knowledge, we formulate a surrogate nuclear waste composition that the DOE can then use in their testing as they determine the best way to immobilize the radioactive material in that particular tank. With our help, they are working toward emptying the tanks and safeguarding the natural environment surrounding the site.
To learn more about Noah’s solutions capabilities, contact us.