As part of an interagency agreement between the Bureau of Mines, U.S. Department of the Interior, and the U.S. Department of Energy through its contractor, EG&G Idaho, Inc., the Bureau conducted six melting tests to assess the feasibility of melting transuranic- containing wastes. Charge materials included concrete, soil, metal, wood, cao- and na2o-containing waste sludges, cement, and polyethylene mixed in various proportions in both unburned and partially incinerated forms. It was possible to melt these materials in a 1-metric-ton conventional electric arc furnace and separate the slag and metal provided that suitable fluxes are added to condition the siliceous slags. However, the electric arc furnace cannot be considered an efficient incinerator. The molten slags were poured into 210-liter steel drums having a 0.64-Cm-thick steel chill plate on the bottom. All slags were tapped from the furnace satisfactorily. The concrete and sludge materials required the most energy for melting. The highest electrode consumption occurred when the sludges were melted. A high alumina-chrome refractory is satisfactory for use as a furnace lining in melting these wastes. Offgases and particulates from all of the tests were sampled and analyzed. The greatest amounts of particulate matter in the offgas streams were obtained from melting sludges and incinerated wastes.
Mat. Res. Soc. Symp. Proc., V. 15, 1983, Elsevier Scientific Publishing Company, PP. 639-646