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How Safe Is Safe Enough for a Chemical Weapons Destruction System?

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Following the earthquake in East Japan and the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident, the safety of highly technical projects such as those for chemical weapons destruction has come under scrutiny. This review includes consideration of the impact of outlier events on the recovery and destruction of sea-disposed munitions.

At Port Kanda, Japan, a project for detection, recovery, and destruction of sea-dumped chemical munitions is ongoing, and approximately 3,000 items have been cleaned up as of the end of July 2011. In light of the recent earthquake and accident at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant, the authors review the safety design criteria for the system, including transportation based on the International Atomic Energy Agency spent-fuel transportation cask design and detonation chamber based on the new ASME design Code Case 2564 for impulsively loaded vessels. One of the important lessons learned from the disaster is that risks from earthquake and tsunami can be reduced when destruction of chemical weapons is done at the recovery site.

Keywords: ASME Code Case 2564; DAVINCHfloat; detonation chamber; double-walled transportation cask; transportation of chemical munitions

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2012

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  • The Marine Technology Society Journal is the flagship publication of the Marine Technology Society. It publishes the highest caliber, peer-reviewed papers on subjects of interest to the society: marine technology, ocean science, marine policy and education. The Journal is dedicated to publishing timely special issues on emerging ocean community concerns while also showcasing general interest and student-authored works.
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