Biodegradation of Hydrolyzed Mustard from An ACWA Projectile Washout Study
EDGEWOOD CHEMICAL BIOLOGICAL CENTER ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND MD
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In 1996, public laws 104-208, 105-261, and 106-79 established and expanded the Assembled Chemical Weapons Assessment ACWA Program. To address public concerns over safe destruction of the U.S. chemical weapon stockpile the ACWA program was tasked to identify two or more viable alternatives technologies to the baseline destruction method of incineration. Neutralization followed by biodegradation was one technology to be successfully demonstrated in a pilot facility at the Edgewood Chemical and Biological Center ECBC APG, MD. A successful Engineering Design Study EDS followed the demonstration and the NeutralizationBiodegradation process was subsequently approved for destruction of assembled chemical weapons stored at the Pueblo Chemical Depot. During the laboratory and pilot-scale studies hydrolyzed mustard taken from ton storage containers and tetrytol from storage was used to simulate the agent and explosive fills of the M60 chemical round. Presently, rocket cutting and washout engineering studies continue at PCD in preparation for eventual destruction of the chemical rounds. Concern has risen over the possible effect undissolved heel material may have on the biodegradability of the hydrolyzed payloads. This follow-on laboratory study uses mustard agent and tetrytol removed during rocket cutting and washout testing on actual chemical rounds stored at PCD.
- Chemical, Biological and Radiological Warfare