Cleantech Venture Forum II

Cleantech Venture Network’s second venture forum in San Franciso, Apr 30- May1 was a great success. Over 260 people in attendance included mostly investors, along with representatives of the 23 companies selected to present (from over 200 companies that applied).

You may recall reading about Cleantech Venture Network in UFTO Notes 26 July, 1 October ’02.

The surge of interest in cleantech was noteworthy. Many new faces were there, some of them very prominent VC firms whose usual sectors of IT and telecom have lost their lustre. These investors seem to be checking out energy tech and cleantech to see what the opportunities are, and whether it might represent a “next big thing”. Some of them are actually doing deals, too. Panels sessions discussed this very trend, while others went into water, Asia, and the overall outlook for investing in cleantech. The new issue of the Venture Monitor, due in a couple of weeks (for members only!) will have details from the panel discussions.

The presenting companies ranged from a successful biopesticide company (better, cheaper, safer than chemicals…really), to several hydrogen, fuel cell, and solar PV companies, and some water and waste management. (The PV companies were described in another UFTO Note just recently). Here’s the list. (If you want additional information, please contact me. I’m not including details here in the interests of brevity, but I can send you a version with longer descriptions, as well as individual company’s own writeups. Some may appear in future notes.)

AgraQuest, Inc. – Natural pesticides
aqWise – Wastewater treatment retrofit increases throughput
CellTech Power – Fundamentally new solid oxide fuel cell acts like a refuelable battery.
FiveStar Technologies – Advanced materials via cavitation technology
Global Solar – thin film PV in production
H2Gen – On-site hydrogen generation via small scale steam methane reforming
Hoku Scientific, Inc – PEM fuel cell membrane to replace Nafion
HyRadix Inc. ? Small scale hydrogen generators via thermal reforming
Integrated Env. Technologies – Waste Treatment via Plasma
iPower – Distributed Generation ? New genset
Mach Energy ? Energy management services to commercial buildings
PolyFuel Inc – Direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC) systems
PowerTube – Geothermal powerplant downhole
Powerzyme – Enzymatic fuel cell
PrecisionH2 – Hydrogen, power and carbon from methane, via cold plasma (no CO2!)
Primotive – unique electric motor/generator
QuestAir – Gas purification via pressure swing absorption
Raycom Technologies – Thin film solar cells via high volume sputter coating
Sensicore – Sensors monitor water quality cheaply
Solaicx – Polycrystalline silicon PV
Solicore – Thin film lithium batteries
Verdant – Wave power via underwater windmills

Here’s a definition of “Cleantech”, from the website:
**The concept of “clean” technologies embraces a diverse range of products, services, and processes that are inherently designed to provide superior performance at lower costs, greatly reduce or eliminate environmental impacts and, in doing so, improve the quality of life. Clean technologies span many industries, from alternative forms of energy generation to water purification to materials-efficient production techniques.**

I strongly suggest you consider an investor membership, for dealflow, Venture Monitor, networking and other benefits. ( The next Forum will be held this Fall in New York.

Eneco Announces Direct Heat-to-Electricity Device

ENECO, a small company in Salt Lake City that we’ve known for over 5 years, has kept a very low profile until this week, when it burst into the news with an announcement, jointly with MIT, of a solid state device that converts heat directly to electricity at higher efficiency than thermoelectric devices. With considerable luck, they landed a feature article in Tuesday’s NY Times weekly Technology section:

They had given the NY Times a 24 hour head start before issuing a major press release, to coincide with one from MIT:

The company’s own materials released Tuesday can be found at their website:

A technical paper was presented at a poster session Materials Research Society’s fall meeting in Boston this week, but copies, and preprints of other papers submitted to major technical journals, won’t be available the publications release them.

The technology is said to combine both the thermoelectric effect and the thermionic effect into one device. Electrons boil off the emitter layer on the hot side, adding to the current from the thermoelectric effect. Instead of a vacuum gap, as in standard thermionic devices, there is a semiconductor layer thermally isolating the hot side from the cold side.

They claim to have already demonstrated efficiencies of 17%, compared with 10% which is the best thermoelectrics can do, and at 250-300 C, not the 1100 C that thermionics converters require.

The company very recently hired a new CEO, a veteran of the semiconductor industry. They expect to do a new private offering in the first quarter of 2002.

I have a small investment in the company, and am well acquainted with the principals. If you would like to make contact I would be pleased to make a personal introduction.

Argonne Visit notes

This is a quick highlights memo about the UFTO visit to Argonne, July 15, 16. A full report will be forthcoming early this Fall.

For the first time, a sizable contingent of UFTO member companies was present for the whole visit. I hope this can become our standard practice, with even a bigger attendance. Argonne made excellent presentations for us. We all agreed that it was a good *beginning* of what must become an ongoing dialogue.

If you want a headstart on some of Argonne’s work, here are a few things we heard about that really piqued the group’s interest:

Comprehensive GIS with massive data on gas system. See separate NOTE, or go to this webpage:
**User Access is available on request, on a collegial basis.** The limitation is server capacity, so ANL is not in a position to throw it wide open. They are also very open to any companies that want to provide better data on their own gas T&D systems–which can be kept confidential.
Contact Ron Fisher, 630-252-3508,

— Ice Slurry District Cooling
UFTO reported on this back in 93/94. It is now privately funded, and has advanced considerably. Ice slush dramatically increases the capacity of new or retrofitted central cooling distribution systems.
Contact Ken Kasza, 630-252-5224,

— On-Line Plant Transient Diagnostic
Uses thermal-hydraulic first principles, along with generic equipment data, in a two-level knowledge system. Neural net models of the system can rapidly indicate what’s causing a transient, e.g. water loss, heat added, etc., and identify where in the system the problem lies. The system wouldn’t need to be custom built for each plant, except to incorporate the plant’s schematics. It’s been run in blind tests at a nuclear plant. Next step is to hook it up to a full scale simulator, and then go for NRC approval. A fossil application would be much easier.
Contact Tom Wei, 630-252-4688,
or Jaques Reifman 630-252-4685,

— Advanced NOx Control with Gas Co-firing
Closed-loop controller adjusts furnace control variables to get optimal distribution of gas injection to yield greatest NOx reduction. Typical systems use gas at 20% of heat input, but this system gets same or better NOx levels with only 7%. Joint effort with ComEd, GRI, and Energy Systems Assoc.
Contact Jaques Reifman 630-252-4685,
or Tom Wei, 630-252-4688,

Sensor monitor and fault detection system knows if the system is misbehaving or the sensor is wrong. Can see slow drift, signal dropout, and noise, giving early indicators of sensor failure, and providing assurance that the process itself is operating normally, thus reducing unneeded shutdowns. It also can monitor the process itself, for wide ranging quality control applications. MSET stands for Multivariate State Estimation Technique. A model learns expected relationships among dozens or hundreds of sensor inputs, and makes predictions for what each sensor should say, and this is compared with the actual sensor signal. Argonne has patented a unique statistical test for residual error (the difference) which replaces the usual setting of fixed limit levels. There are also important innovations in the neural net modeling, which is completely non-parametric.

Applications range from the NASA shuttle engine, to several power plants, to the stock market.
ANL contacts are Ralph Singer, 630-252-4500,
Kenny Gross 630-252-6689,

A spin off company is doing applications in everything else but electric generation. (Think of the possibilities in T&D!!) They call the product ProSSense. Website is at http//
Contact Alan Wilks, Smart Signal Corp, Mt. Prospect IL 847-758-8418,


Here is the text of ANL’s overview “Topic Capability Sheet”. Many of you got hardcopies of the complete set in the mail. They’re still available from Tom Wolsko ( I’ve also posted them on the UFTO website, until Argonne puts a final verion up on their own website.

Argonne National Laboratory:
A Science and Technology Partner for the Energy Industry

Argonne is a multidisciplinary science and technology organization that
offers innovative and cost-effective solutions to the energy industry.

— Introduction
Argonne National Laboratory understands that energy companies must meet growing customer demand by creating, storing, and distributing energy and using the most efficient, cost-effective, environmentally benign technologies available to provide those services. We also understand that they must use increasingly more complex information for decision-making, comply with a multitude of environmental regulations, and adjust to a rapidly evolving marketplace.

Argonne has more than 50 years of experience in solving energy problems and addressing related issues, for both its customers and its own needs. Combining specialities such as materials science, advanced computing, power engineering, and environmental science, Argonne researchers apply cutting-edge science and advanced technologies to create innovative solutions to complex problems.

— Argonne Solutions
Recent applications of that expertise include
– A Spot Market Network model that simulates and evaluates short-term energy transactions.
– A “fuel reformer” that allows fuel cells to use a wide variety of hydrocarbon fuels to make electricity.
– Advisory systems for plant diagnostics and management based on sensors, neural networks, and expert systems.
– MSET, a real-time sensor validation system that provides early warning of sensor malfunction.
– Decontamination and decommissioning techniques developed for Argonne’s own facilities.
– Advanced materials for system components, batteries, ultracapacitors, flywheels, and hazardous waste encapsulation.

— Contacts
Argonne’s Working Group on Utilities:
– Dick Weeks, 630-252-9710,
– Tom Wolsko, 630-252-3733,

For technical information, contact the person listed under the category of interest.

Nuclear Technology
David Weber, 630/252-8175,
– Operations and Maintenance
– Materials
– Reactor Analysis
– Safety
– Spent-Fuel Disposition

Fossil Technology
David Schmalzer, 630/252-7723,
– Basic and Applied Research
– Technology Research and Development
– Market, Resource, and Policy Assessments

Transmission and Distribution
John Hull, 630/252-8580,
– System Components
– Energy Storage
– Distributed Generation
– Data Gathering and Analysis
– Biological Effects

Energy Systems and Components Research
Richard Valentin, 630/252-4483,
– Component Reliability
– Sensors
– Systems Analysis

Materials Science and Technology
Roger Poeppel, 630/252-5118,
– Materials Characterization
– Modeling and Performance
– Advanced and Environmental Materials
– Materials Properties
– Superconductivity

Fuel Cell Research and Development
Walter Podolski, 630/252-7558,
– Fuel Processing
– System Design, Modeling, and Analysis
– Testing
– Energy-Use Pattern Analysis

Advanced Concepts in Energy Storage
K. Michael Myles, 630/252-4329,
– Secondary Batteries
– Ultracapacitors and High-Power Energy Storage
– Flywheels
– Superconducting Magnets

Information Technology
Craig Swietlik, 630/252-8912,
– Computer Security and Protection
– Independent Verification and Validation
– Information Management
– Advanced Computing Technologies

Environmental Science and Technology
Don Johnson, 630/252-3392,
– Environmental Characterization
– Process Modifications
– Emissions Controls
– Waste Management
– Site Management

Environmental and Economic Analysis
Jerry Gillette, 630/252-7475,
– Electric System Modeling and Analysis
– Risk Assessment and Management
– Environmental Assessment
– Cost and Economic Analysis
– Legal and Regulatory Analysis

Decontamination and Decommissioning
Tom Yule, 630/252-6740,
– Operations
– Technology
– Technical Analysis

End-Use Technologies
William Schertz, 630/252-6230,
– Plasma Processes
– Ultrasonic Processing
– Electrodialysis Separation Processes
– Recycling Technologies
– Aluminum and Magnesium Production

Thermal Energy Utilization Technologies
Kenneth Kasza, 630/252-5224,
– Compact Heat Exchangers
– Ice Slurry District Cooling
– Advanced Thermal Fluids

For information on working with Argonne, contact Paul Eichamer, Industrial Technology Development Center, Argonne National Laboratory, Bldg. 201, 9700 South Cass Avenue, Argonne, Illinois 60439; phone: 800/627-2596; fax: 630/252-5230,

Technology Transfer Opportunities – Oak Ridge National Laboratory



Final Report

Technology Transfer Opportunities in the Federal Laboratories

Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Oak Ridge, Tennessee

June 1998

Prepared for:

Utility Federal Technology Opportunities (UFTO)


Edward Beardsworth


Overview & Organization
Technologies & Programs

This report is part of a series examining technology opportunities at National Laboratories of possible interest to electric utilities


This report is proprietary and confidential. It is for internal use by personnel of companies that are subscribers in the UFTO multi-client program. It is not to be otherwise copied or distributed except as authorized in writing.



This report details findings about technology and technology transfer opportunities at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory that might be of strategic interest to electric utilities. It is a major update and revision materials developed previously, and is based on a visit to the lab in April 1998, and also draws from various publications, collateral information and website content.


A special note of thanks to Marilyn Brown for arranging the agenda and her gracious and tireless support, and to all the ORNL staff who gave generously of their time and attention.

Also to Mr. Scott Penfield of Technology Insights, who accompanied the visits (as a representative of one of the UFTO utilities) and kindly provided his written account of the meetings for use in the preparation this report.

ORNL — Overview & Organization

Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is a “GOCO” lab (government-owned, contractor operated). Lockheed Martin Energy Research Corp. is the contractor that manages ORNL. (Lockheed Martin also manages the Y-12 Plant in Oak Ridge, Idaho National Engineering Lab and Sandia National Lab.)

ORNL has a matrix organizational structure, where “divisions” aligned primarily by discipline have the people, and “programs” have the projects and budgets. On some occasions, divisions do get funds and projects of their own. ORNL finds that matrix management can work well if there is a balance of power and the right incentives.

Both divisions and programs live in research “ALD’s” or Associate Laboratory Directorates, headed by Associate Lab Directors who along with other administrative and support groups report to the Laboratory Director (Alvin Trivelpiece).

ORNL’s four research ALD’s are:

=> Energy and Engineering Sciences — Gil Gilliland 423-574-9920

(Div: Engineering Technology, Fusion., Instrum & Control)

(Prog: Energy Effic/Renew Energy, Energy Technology, Fossil Energy, Nuc Technol)

=> Life Sciences and Environmental Technologies

(Div: Chemical Technol, Energy, Environmental Sci, Life Sciences)

=> Adv. Materials, Physical and Neutron Sciences

(Div: Metals & Ceramics, Physics, Solid State, Chemical/Analytical Sci . . .)

=> Computing, Robotics, and Education

(Div: Computer Science and Mathematics, Robotics and Process Systems…)

There is work in all four ALDs of potential interest to utilities. The point of contact for this study was established through the Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Program, which oversees activities involving 11 different research divisions. Contact was also made with the Fossil Energy Program, with a similarly broad scope. Divisions encountered include Engineering Technology, Instrumentation & Control, Metals & Ceramics, and others.

Staffing level is now at approximately 5000, of which 1500 are scientists, of which about 1/2 are PhDs. ORNL’s 1997 budget was about $550 million. Of this amount, the largest program areas were Energy Research (28%), Environmental Management (25%) and Energy Efficiency (16%). Nuclear programs, which were once the principal focus of the Laboratory, are identified at a level of 4% in the overall budget; however, when supporting research topics (e.g., High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR), materials, NRC Programs, etc.) are included, some $100 million can still be identified as nuclear related.

A major new initiative at ORNL is the Spallation Neutron Source facility. The 1999 budget year will constitute a major test for this project, as it will include a construction line item for the first time. If approved, construction is expected to take 6-7 years. A new ORNL directorate has been established to oversee the Spallation Neutron Source project.


Key Contacts:


Primary UFTO contact:

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Program:

A.C.(Tony) Schaffhauser, Director, 423-574-4826,

Marilyn Brown, Deputy Director, 423-576-8152,

Working with ORNL:

Technology Transfer: (Licensing and CRADAs)

Dean Waters, Acting Director, Office of Technology Transfer,


Sylvester Scott, Director, Licensing, 423-576-9673,

Partnerships: (CRADAs, User Program, Personnel Exchanges, Guest Research Assignments)

Louise B. Dunlap, Director, Office of Science and Technology Partnerships,


Public Relations: Joe Culver, Director, Public Affairs,


Partnership Mechanisms

ORNL makes use of an increasingly broad array of contracting mechanisms, including CRADAs, Work for others, User Facility Agreements, etc. Greater use of simpler standard formats makes the process much quicker than in the past.

They are seeing an increasing number of “100% funds-in CRADAs” (i.e. no cost sharing by the lab) from industry, as a cheaper alternative to work-for-others with essentially equivalent intellectual property rights. The Lab also will have as many as 4000 guest assignments per year, 1/4 of which are from industry, where visitors use the facilities or work with staff on CRADAs, etc.


Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Program

Tony Schaffhauser, Director 423-574-4826

Marilyn Brown, Deputy Director 423-576-8152

The EE/RE Program is a matrix organization that draws on several line divisions at ORNL for the majority of its personnel and technical facility resources, to set up multi disciplinary teams. DOE is the sponsor for most of the work, but they see industry and the public as the real customer.

ORNL budget expenditures controlled through the EE/RE Program office amount to some $80 million. The ORNL Energy Efficiency/Renewable Energy (EE/RE) budget was lower in 1996, but the level now appears to be stable.

Major Research and Development Areas

=> Transportation systems, including advanced automotive technologies, advanced materials, utilization of alternative fuels including biofuels, and transportation data.

=> Efficient building systems and for state and community programs, including heating, cooling, and refrigerating equipment; roofs, walls, and foundations; insulating materials; technology transfer; and retrofit of existing residential and commercial structures.

=> Industrial processes, such as bioprocessing, electric motor systems, advanced turbine systems, advanced materials, industrial heat pumps, and evaluations of energy-related inventions.

=> Utilities, including high-temperature superconductors (for transformers and transmission cables), power transmission and distribution systems, electric and magnetic field effects, biomass for power generation, and international programs (including IEA and APEC programs).

Technologies & Programs

Superconducting Technology Program for Electric Energy Systems

Fossil Energy Technologies

Real-Time Corrosion Monitoring

Hot Gas Filters

Materials R&D

Furnace Wall Corrosion with retrofit low-NOx burners

Effects of Coal impurities on fireside corrosion

Improved Stainless Steels

“Perfect Microstructures”

Nickel-Aluminide Alloys

Sulfidation Resistant Alloys

Building Technology Center

Frostless Heat Pump

High Efficiency Refrigerator (1 kwh/day)

Power Systems Technology Program

Energy Conservation Standards for Distribution Transformers

Flywheels and Energy Storage Technologies

Utility Restructuring and Electric Power Ancillary Services

Grid Reliability-Control Center Survey

Electric and Magnetic Fields Bioeffects

Research and Public Information Dissemination (RAPID) Program

Advanced Turbine Systems

Bioenergy Program

Motor, Steam, and Compressed Air Challenge Programs

Oak Ridge Centers for Manufacturing Technology (ORCMT)

Electric Machinery Center

Power Electronics Technology Center and Inverter Technology

Instrumentation & Controls

Machine Condition Monitoring and Diagnostics

Electrical Signature Analysis (ESA) for Utility Applications

Nonlinear data analysis–Component Failure Prediction

NRC/INPO plant database

Photonics and Hybrid Lighting

Superconducting Technology Program for Electric Energy Systems

Bob Hawsey 423-574-8057

Web sites:

(See special report and series of articles on “Superconductivity in Electric Power,”

pp 18-49, IEEE Spectrum, July 1997)

The discovery of high-temperature (i.e., above the boiling temperature of liquid nitrogen) superconductor materials dates to 1986. Since that time, the challenge has been to develop these brittle, ceramic-based materials into a form that can be produced and practically used. DOE research in this area has taken a major step increase, from $19 million in 1997 to $32 million in 1998. (By comparison, Japan is investing $100 million/year in superconductor research.)

DOE HTS Program


Jim Daley, Team Leader, 202-586-1165,

or Joe Mulholland, Utility Liaison


The DOE HTS program supports a balanced technology development effort. Wire and device technologies are developed through a large number of collaborative projects between U.S. national laboratories and industry, and systems technologies are supported through the SPI and other vertically integrated project teams.

DOE’s Superconducting Partnership Initiative (SPI) is a systems technology program designed to accelerate the development of HTS electric power systems. Begun in the fall of 1993, the SPI encourages the formation of vertically integrated teams comprised of partners who usually do not interact in the development cycle, involving close collaboration among system integrators, wire and device manufacturers, end-users (typically electric utilities)

Major projects include

– 5,000 hp high-temperature superconducting (HTS) motor

– 100 MVA HTS generator,

– 115 kV and 12.5 kV HTS transmission cable (2 projects)

– 5/10 MVA HTS transformers (2 projects)

– 15 kV HTS fault current limiter (2.4 kV successfully tested in 9/95 at a utility host site)

Fault Current Limiter

Later this year, pre-commercial (alpha) prototype will be tested by So Cal Edison and Lockheed Martin. Rating is 15-kV, normal 2 kA, intercepts/reduces by 80% a 20-kA peak symmetric or 45 kA peak assymmetric fault. Also functions as a 1/2 cycle circuit breaker. If demo successful, Edison will install it at a substation, and anticipates $1million in savings from avoiding need for a second bus. Next stage will be beta units.

Contact: Eddie Leung, Lockheed Martin program manager

619-874-7945, ext. 4636,

ORNL is participating in two of these partnerships.

Transformers — There is a strong need for medium power transformers (10-150 MVA) that are smaller, more efficient and free of fire hazard, to meet the growth in urban power density. These transformers will go inside building and in multistory substations, and provide higher ratings from existing substations.

— Waukesha Electric Systems (WES), Waukesha, WI

For the Waukesha program, ORNL is responsible for the engineering, design and science of the cooling system, while Intermagnetic General is producing the HTSC coil. WES did the core, instrumentation tank, pumps and test rig. An initial 1 MVA prototype has been constructed and entered testing at WES in February 1998. Initial results are good–the first operational US HTSC transformer easily sustains 2X overloads. Rochester Gas & Electric (RG&E) and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) participated in this initial demonstration.

The next step will be a 5 MVA system, which will provide power to the WES plant beginning in 1999. A larger utility advisory group is participating in this second step (includes several UFTO members). The initial commercial target is a transformer in the range of 10-30 MVA.

Contact: Pat Sullivan, VP Marketing, Waukesha, 414-547-0121, x 1531.

There is a separate transformer development effort that involves ABB, EdF, Los Alamos National Lab (LANL) and American Superconductor.

Cable — HTSC Cables hold the promise of far greater capacity– 5X the power in the same 8″ diameter pipe of conventional buried cable, and without the losses, heat, oil and range limitations.

— Southwire,Carrolton, GA

The Southwire HTSC cable project is expected to culminate in an initial demonstration at Southwire in 1999. The planned 100 ft, 3-phase, 12.4 kV, 1250 Amp cable will provide power (30 MVA) to Southwire facilities. Southern Co, Georgia Transmission Co, and So Cal Edison are partners. DOE is providing half of the $14 million. Southwire has built a 200 ft clean room manufacturing facility, and recently delivered a 5 meter test cable to ORNL for testing.

Pirelli and Los Alamos are pursuing a parallel HTSC cable initiative, with participation by Detroit Edison. The initial objective is a 25 kV line.

Other HTSC development initiatives mentioned include motors/generators (including flywheel motors/generators under development at Boeing) and kaolin magnetic separation equipment being developed by Dupont for the paper industry.

NOTE- More uility participation is needed–to provide advice, and as partners, cofunders and beta test hosts. Any kind of innovative proposal is more than welcome.

RABiTS (TM) Process for Coated High-Temperature Superconductors

Oak Ridge researchers have produced a roll-textured, buffered metal, superconducting tape with a critical current density of 300,000 amperes per square centimeter in liquid nitrogen, which may pave the way for the future manufacture of practical yttrium- or thallium-based conductors for electric power applications.

To produce a superconducting wire sample, the ORNL researchers first developed a process called rolling-assisted biaxial textured substrates, or RABiTS(TM), which enables the superconducting materials to have a high degree of grain alignment in all directions, a necessary condition for more efficient current flow through the superconductor.

MicroCoating Technologies (MCT) in Atlanta and ORNL announced on April 16 that MCT has licensed key patents. “MCT scientists within a six-month period have successfully deposited both HTS coatings and oxide “buffer layers” on several single crystal oxide substrates. MCT also successfully deposited buffer layer on textured nickel. The epitaxy of some buffer layers is as good or better than with any other deposition technique to date. In addition, MCT’s open atmosphere process can meet or exceed industry-wide cost targets to enable commercial-scale production of superconductor technology.”

Other licensees include Midwest Superconductivity and Oxford Superconducting Technology, with two more pending.

Fossil Energy Technologies

Rod Judkins 423-574-4572

ORNL described some additional advancements in materials and technology for fossil and related applications that were not addressed in the ORNL survey of utilities (developed by Technology Insights and sent to UFTO members in mid 1997). Some examples are:

Real-Time Corrosion Monitoring: A flash of laser light is impinged on a fossil boiler wall. By observing the infrared response of the area, corrosion related effects, such as thinning, debonding and delamination can be inferred.

Hot Gas Filters: In partnership with manufacturers, ORNL has developed two distinct classes of hot gas clean up filters.

– A ceramic composite (SiC-based) filter developed with 3-M is primarily targeted to fluidized bed combustion applications. The filter has been tested in AEP’s Tidd Plant and a Studvik incinerator in S. Carolina. It is available through 3-M. Contact Ed Fisher, 612-736-1005

– A lower temperature (700 – 1000 deg C) iron-aluminide filter, with high resistance to sulfidation, has been developed in partnership with Pall Corp. (Portland NY) and is nearing commercial introduction. An alternative to ceramics, it can be made with standard manufacturing equipment. Tests at the University of Cinncinnati show excellent corrosion resistance. Coal gasification is the target application.

Materials R&D

Ron Bradley 423-574-6095

Ian Wright, 423-574-4451

Furnace Wall Corrosion with retrofit low-NOx burners — root cause is flame licking walls, so that control of flame characteristics using sensor-feedback arrangements should be the best solution. Hence, there is a need to develop sensors to monitor flame condition as input to control mechanism. ORNL has approaches for this, using chaos theory to analyse the flame signatures, for instance (Stuart Daw, David Schoenwald). There will also be a continuing practical need for diagnostics, coatings, repair techniques, etc., since not all boilers will be amenable to combustion control, and the use of multiple and varying coal sources will lead to continuing corrosion problems in some parts of the furnace wall. Sulfidation-resistant ferritic alloys (ORNL’s iron aluminides) promising as overlay/cladding, but difficult to apply reproducibly. Development program with Lehigh Univ-utility boiler consortium (Prof. Arnie Marder) is showing good promise.

Effects of Coal impurities on fireside corrosion — Chlorine limits based on fundamental misunderstanding–only a problem when other combustion problems (flame impingement) present. Developing in situ probes to measure short-term corrosion.

12th Ann. Conf Fossil Energy Materials

Just obtained the program for this upcoming conference..

Twelfth Annual Conference on Fossil Energy Materials

Knoxville, Tennessee
May 12-14, 1998

The Twelfth Annual Conference on Fossil Energy Materials will review the work performed by the Fossil Energy Advanced Research and Technology Development (AR&TD) Materials Program. The AR&TD Materials Program provides needed long-range research in areas not addressed by the Department of Energy line programs and focuses on the unique needs of fossil energy systems which cannot be met by currently available materials. The intent of the AR&TD Materials Program is to provide major materials developments that can dramatically affect the feasibility of some fossil energy systems concepts. Research is conducted at national and government laboratories, universities, and industrial research facilities.

Current research activities will be described in oral presentations and posters by the researchers working on the AR&TD Materials Program. These technical presentations will address research on ceramic composites, iron aluminide alloys, advanced high-temperature alloys, and functional materials such as inorganic membranes, filters, activated carbon absorbents, and solid oxide fuel cells. Several developments are in the demonstration and commercialization stage. The status of these technology transfer activities will be presented.

Conference Details
The Twelfth Annual Conference on Fossil Energy Materials, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy and ORNL, will be held May 12-14, 1998, at the Hilton Knoxville, 501 West Church Avenue, Knoxville, Tennessee. Your registration fee of $150 (in U.S. dollars) includes: continental breakfast, refreshment breaks, a buffet reception, the extended abstracts, and a copy of the proceedings mailed to the registrants after the meeting.
The registration fee of $150 (in U.S. dollars) is due on or before May 1, 1998 and is non-refundable after May 1. Credit cards are not accepted.
A block of rooms is reserved until April 15, 1997, at the Hilton Knoxville (423-523-2300) at a rate of $64 per night plus tax. When making your reservations, please mention the Conference on Fossil Energy Materials.
For more information, please contact the conference coordinator, Judy Fair, at 423-576-7270 (fax: 423-574-5812).


Knoxville, Tennessee
May 12-14, 1998

SESSION I – Ceramic Composites and Functional Materials

Tuesday, May 12, 1998

7:00 Registration and Continental Breakfast
8:00 Welcome and Introductory Remarks, Program Managers, DOE and ORNL
8:20 Keynote Address – Marvin I. Singer,
Sr Advisor for Advanced Research,Office of Fossil Energy, DOE
8:40 Invited Speaker – Deborah Haught, Program Manager
Ceramic Fiber-Reinforce Ceramic Composites,
Office of Industrial Technologies, DOE
9:00 Development of Oxidation-Resistant Composite Materials and Interfaces
R.A. Lowden, ORNL
9:30 Environmental Barrier Coatings
J. A. Haynes, ORNL
10:00 BREAK

10:20 Corrosion Protection of SiC Based Ceramics with CVD Mullite Coatings
V. Sarin, Boston University
10:50 Iron-Aluminide Filters for IGCCs and PFBCs
P. F. Tortorelli, ORNL
11:20 Exposure Testing of Materials at Galatin Power Plant
J. L. Blough, Foster Wheeler
11:50 LUNCH

1:15 Development of Nondestructive Eval Methods for Structural Ceramics
W. A. Ellingson, Argonne National Lab
1:45 Mechanical Performance of Hi-Nicalon/CVI-SiC Composites with Multilayer SiC/C Interfaces
W. A. Curtin,Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State Univ
2:15 Modification of Slags and Monolithic Refractories to Reduce Corrosion Rates
J. P. Hurley Univ of N Dakota Energy & Environ Research Center
2:45 BREAK
3:00 Corrosion and Mechanical Properties of alloys in FBC and Mixed-Gas Environments
K. Natesan,Argonne National Lab
3:30 Solid State Electrolyte Systems
L. R. Pederson, Pacific Northwest Lab
4:00 Ceramic Membranes for High Temperature Hydrogen Separation
D. F. Fain, East Tennessee Technology Park



SESSION II – Ceramic, New Alloys, and Functional Materials

Tuesday, May 12, 1998
5:30 – 7:30 p.m.


Development of Scale-Up CVI System for Tubular Geometries
T. M. Besmann, ORNL
Mass Transport Measurements and Modeling for Chemical Vapor Infiltration
T. L. Starr, Georgia Institute of Technology
Thermal Cycling Characteristics of Plasma Synthesized Mullite Films
I. Brown, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab
A Carbon Fiber Based Monolithic Adsorbent for Gas Separation
T. D. Burchell, ORNL
Mechanisms of Defect Complex Formation and Environmental-Assisted Fracture Behavior of Iron Aluminides
B. R. Cooper, West Virginia University
Study of Fatigue and Fracture Behavior of Cr2Nb-Based Alloys: Phase Stability in Nb-Cr-Ni Ternary Systems
P. Liaw, Univ of Tennessee
Weld Overlay Cladding With Iron Aluminides
G. M. Goodwin, ORNL
High Temperature Corrosion Behavior of Iron-Aluminide Alloys and Coatings
P. F. Tortorelli, ORNL
Electro-Spark Deposition Technology
R. N. Johnson, Pacific Northwest Lab
R. Walters, Albany Research Center
Oxide-Dispersion-Strengthened Fe3Al-Based Alloy Tubes
B. K. Kad, Univ of California at San Diego
Reduction in Defect Content of ODS Alloys
A. R. Jones, Univ of Liverpool
Low-Aluminum Content Iron Aluminum Alloys
V. K. Sikka, ORNL
Mo-Si Alloy Development
J. H. Schneibel, ORNL

Workshop on Materials for Separation Processes for Vision 21 Systems

Wednesday, May 13, 1998

7:00 Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:00 Speaker: William Fulkerson
President’s Committee of Advisors on Science and
Technology (PCAST) Energy R&D Panel – Chairman
Fossil Energy Committee
8:30 Speaker: Howard Feibus, Director
Office of Advanced Research, Fossil Energy, DOE
This year’s workshop will focus on separations issues particularly
as they apply to the FE Vision 21 concept. Although Vision 21 embodies
several technologies in yet-to-be-defined configurations, materials
for separations systems will be critical to any and all of the
possible technology elements of a Vision 21 plant. Separations process
include, among others, gas-gas separations, such as the separation of
hydrogen from synthesis gas or from carbon dioxide, air separation to
produce oxygen, and gas-solid separation devices, i.e., hot-gas
filters. Representatives from companies working on Vision 21
technologies will establish a commercial perspective for the
separations processes and materials required for these systems. The
objective of the workshop will be to establish the highest priority
materials developments for these separations systems, and determine
how well the AR&TD Materials Program is addressing these priorities.


SESSION IV – New Alloys

Thursday, May 14, 1998

7:30 Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:00 Welcome and Introductory Remarks
8:10 Speaker:
John Stringer, Executive Technical Fellow
Strategic Science and Technology, EPRI
8:30 Development of ODS Fe3Al Alloys
I.G. Wright, ORNL
9:00 The Influence of Processing on Microstructure and Properties of Iron Aluminides
R. N. Wright, Idaho National Engineering Lab
9:30 Iron Aluminide Weld Overlay Coatings for Boiler Tube Protection in Coal-fired Low NOx Boilers
J. N. DuPont, Lehigh University
10:00 BREAK
10:15 Corrosion Performance of Iron Aluminides in Fossil Energy Environments
K. Natesan, Argonne National Lab
10:45 Effects of Titanium and Zirconium on Iron Aluminide Weldments,
G. R. Edwards Colorado School of Mines
11:15 Microstructure of Mechanical Behavior of Alumina Scales and Coatings
P. F. Tortorelli ORNL
11:45 LUNCH
1:15 Investigation of Austenitic Alloys for Advanced Heat Recovery and Hot-Gas Cleanup Systems
R. W. Swindeman, ORNL
1:45 Fireside Corrosion Testing of Candidate Superheater Tube Alloys, Coatings, and Claddings – Phase II
J. L. Blough, Foster Wheeler Development Corporation
2:15 Processing of Advanced Austenitics for Recuperator Service
P. J. Maziasz, ORNL
2:45 Ultrahigh Temperature Intermetallic Alloys
C. T. Liu and M. Brady, ORNL
3:15 SHS Processing and Properties of Intermetallic Alloys and Composites
W. Riley,Albany Research Center

NACE – Int’l Corrosion Society

NACE Annual Conference and Exposition — CORROSION/98
March 22 – 27, 1998 San Diego, CA

See website at

A brochure for this conference came in the mail recently.


In the unlikely event that there could be people in your company who ought to be involved with NACE and aren’t, some background information is included below. (I checked with the NACE membership office, and several UFTO companies do have individuals who are members, though some have only one or two, and some have none.)

NACE is to corrosion what IEEE is to electrical engineering, and is one of those exceptional independent resources in a particular technical area of importance to the industry.

UFTO is developing information on other such resources as well.

(excerpts from the NACE website)

NACE International – The International Corrosion Society
1440 South Creek Drive
Houston, Texas 77084
281-228-6200 fax 281-228-6300

Mission ——–
NACE International is a professional technical society dedicated to reducing the economic impact of corrosion, promoting public safety, and protecting the environment by advancing the knowledge of corrosion engineering and science. With more than fifty years of experience in developing corrosion prevention and control standards, NACE International has become the largest organization in the world committed to the study of corrosion.

Membership ——–
NACE’s membership has grown to more than 15,000 professionals from eighty nations representing virtually every major industry. NACE’s membership is comprised of: engineers, inspectors, and technicians; presidents, business owners, and consultants; managers, supervisors, and sales representatives; scientists, chemists, and researchers; and educators and students.

Organizational Structure ——–
NACE is organized into four Areas in North America and four Regions outside the continent. More than eighty sections within these Areas and Regions sponsor local programs to promote the exchange of corrosion information throughout the world.

Conferences ——–
Each year, NACE sponsors a number of conferences, regional symposia, and expositions. NACE’s annual conference is the world’s largest gathering dedicated to the control and prevention of corrosion. This event attracts more than 5,000 attendees each year and is comprised of technical symposia, research sessions, technical committee meetings, current issue presentations, informative lectures, and a comprehensive four-day exhibition.

Education Courses ——–
NACE offers education programs for both members and nonmembers in the US, Canada, and a variety of international locations. Intensive week-long courses are developed and taught by corrosion professionals with years of practical experience in the field. A variety of other corrosion topics are covered in short courses, TechEdge programs, in-house training programs, and video courses.

Coating Inspector Training and Certification Program ——–
NACE’s Coating Inspector Training and Certification Program was developed to meet the coatings industry need for recognized professional training standards and application guidelines.

Professional Recognition Program ——–
More than 4,500 individuals worldwide have been certified in corrosion science and technology

Public Affairs ——–
NACE raises the awareness of corrosion control and prevention technology among government agencies and legislators, businesses, professional societies, and the general public.

Standards ——–
NACE’s Technical Practices Committee oversees more than 300 technical committees that research, study, and recommend state-of-the-art corrosion technologies to both the public and private sectors. These committees produce consensus industry standards in the form of test methods, recommended practices, and material requirements. Industries and governments across the globe rely on NACE standards for materials preservation and corrosion control information.

Publications ——–
– Materials Performance, a monthly journal that publishes practical corrosion control applications and case histories for solving corrosion-related problems affecting all industries.

– Corrosion Journal, a monthly technical research journal devoted to taking a critical look at the causes and effects of corrosion processes and the protection of materials in corrosive environments.

– Corrosion Abstracts, a bimonthly reference periodical providing more than 500 abstracts of corrosion-related publications per issue from the world’s leading technical journals and book publishers.

Software ——–
NACE packages the latest in corrosion technology in easy-to-use desktop software programs. Data selection and reference software programs assist engineers with researching, analyzing, and developing advanced corrosion control systems.


Energy Technology Committees

Corrosion and materials degradation control in the generation, conversion, and utilization of energy.

— T-2-4 Material Performance in Power T&D Systems
To facilitate identification and resolution of corrosion-related problems with components of power transmission and distribution systems. The components to be considered are: hardware, conductors, insulators, structures, stations, and other aboveground equipment.

— T-2A Nuclear Systems
To provide scientific and engineering information concerning the performance of materials exposed to environments related to any phase of the generation of energy originating from a nuclear source, and of materials used for disposal of spent nuclear fuels and radioactive wastes.

— T-2A-2 Interim Storage of Radioactive Liquid Waste
To examine corrosion of radioactive liquid waste storage and transfer systems. This assignment includes material selection, corrosion monitoring, control, and research activities associated with the interim storage of radioactive liquid wastes and their impact on safety and the environment. Specific areas of interest include: life prediction, corrosion surveillance, corrosion control, degradation mechanisms, and tank structural integrity.

— T-2E Geothermal Systems
To identify methods and materials for the control of degradation proceses in the extraction, conversion, and utilization of geothermal resources.

— T-2F Fossil Fuel Combustion and Conversion
Materials performance in the generation and utilization of energy derived from combustion of fossil fuels and in systems converting fossil fuels into gaseous and liquid products. Areas of coverage are fireside combustion systems, including waste incineration. In the synfuels sector, areas covered are coal conversion (gasification; liquefaction) and extraction of oil from tar sands (bitumens) and shale.

T-2F-1/T-5-1 Materials Problems in Waste Incinerator Fireside and Air Pollution Control Equipment
To provide a forum for exchange of information on the performance of materials in incineration facilities for chemical, municipal, and toxic wastes, and combustion facilities for low-grade and biomass fuels. Scope encompasses associated energy recovery and emission control systems.

Followup on SC CO2/concrete

Subject: UFTO-followup on sc CO2/concrete
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 1997 09:51:49 -0800
From: Ed Beardsworth

Here’s the Los Alamos Press release, issued today (it was delayed a week). The web site for Materials Technology Ltd. I gave in my earlier note had a typo — the correct address is (I left out the ‘s’)

Suggest you get the Nov 96 Sci American article, also avail. online at

When someone’s ready, I recommend a call to Roger Jones, the principal at Materials Tech… he’s great to talk to. Keep me posted!
| ** UFTO ** Edward Beardsworth ** Consultant
| 951 Lincoln Ave. tel 415-328-5670
| Palo Alto CA 94301-3041 fax 415-328-5675

Los Alamos paves the way for better cement

Laboratory researchers are developing an environmentally friendly process that hardens cement and creates a new class of strong and lightweight building and fabrication materials.

The Laboratory process transforms common portland or lime cemented materials and clays by treatment with carbon dioxide under high pressure, making them chemically stable, nearly impermeable and stronger. The process also makes inexpensive building products out of waste materials, including fly ash from coal-burning power plants, alum sludge from water treatment plants and blast furnace slag. Treated cement also may improve the safe storage of radioactive waste.

The process, patented by Roger Jones Jr. of Materials Technology Limited of Reno, Nev., may lead to new building materials, consumer goods, auto parts and other products. According to Jones, the process creates recyclable materials that will be competitive with certain metals, plastics and wood products.

Under increasing pressure and temperature, carbon dioxide gas first reaches a liquid phase, then enters a region called “supercritical” where it has useful properties of both gas and liquid. Supercritical carbon dioxide expands to fill its container and diffuses into the tiniest pores like a gas. On the other hand, because supercritical carbon dioxide has a high density like a liquid, it can dissolve substances and carry them. In this case, it grabs water molecules and pulls them out of the cement.

Chemically, the process converts the hydroxide of cement to a carbonate, with water as the byproduct. This chemical reaction occurs naturally, too, but may take thousands of years.

“The cement in the Great Wall of China has not yet reached a chemically neutral state,” said Craig Taylor, principal investigator for the Labortory’s Supercritical Fluids Development Center in Organic Chemistry (CST-12). “But the supercritical carbon dioxide treatment achieves the chemically stable condition in minutes or hours. It’s not really cement anymore, but a whole new material. It is really pourable limestone.”

Taylor demonstrates the effect of supercritical carbon dioxide with two chunks of bonded fly ash, a waste product from coal-burning power plants. Set in a pan of water, the untreated sample quickly crumbles and dissolves, obviously useless as a building material. The treated sample, however, remains impervious to the water. Treated fly ash could make a strong, lightweight and economically attractive material for wall board, flooring and other construction products.

Large-scale use of supercritical carbon dioxide is not new to industry. For example, commercial operations have applied the same technology for years to make vegetable oils and to decaffeinate coffee. So Taylor does not foresee difficulties treating large volumes of cement blocks or massive columns and slabs. Even the U.S. Air Force has expressed interest in the technology — for building high-strength concrete slabs for runways.

Using supercritical carbon dioxide through a high pressure nozzle, large surfaces of existing concrete structures might be hardened and sealed against penetration of chemicals, improving wear-resistance and durability. The treated surfaces will resist chipping or scaling because the transition from the thin, very hard exterior to normal strength interior concrete would be gradual.

Large amounts of carbon dioxide produced by coal and oil burning power plants and by gasoline burning cars are blamed in part for a trend toward global warming, called the greenhouse effect. But the cement treatment process, by permanently removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and locking it into building products, actually helps reduce the impact of coal and petrochemical use. (Total curing of 2.2 pounds of cement permanently removes about 25 gallons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.) Research is under way to use both the fly ash and carbon dioxide expelled by coal-burning plants to produce construction materials.

“Like living coral, now we can take carbon dioxide out of the environment and build our houses with it. The process is good for ourselves and good for the environment,” said Taylor.

The Lab’s continuing role in development of the improved cement will be to optimize treatment conditions and help design a treatment facility. And researchers see a major new area of materials science to pursue.

“It’s a new bulk material not well characterized,” said Taylor. “Materials scientists will be busy with this for decades.”

Since supercritical carbon dioxide readily dissolves many polymers, the process can be used to drive polymers into the surfaces of products made from cements, ceramics or other water-based pastes. Polymer-impregnated structures are better able to resist shock and impact forces and could be useful for a range of products from buildings to auto bodies.

The Laboratory, with the only operational plutonium facility in the country, also is interested in the chemistry of cement because radioactive waste often is mixed with cement for long-term storage and disposal. Because regular cement contains water, however, chemical reactions occur inside these cemented wastes, sometimes resulting in a hazardous buildup of hydrogen gas. If the cemented waste could be treated with the supercritical carbon dioxide process, dangerous chemical reactions would be eliminated.

The Lab’s supercritical carbon dioxide research is funded internally through the Nuclear Materials Stabilization Technologies group. Commercial research continues through agreements with Materials Technology Limited and Custom Building Products of Seal Beach, Calif.

Technology Transfer Opportunities – Savannah River Site



Final Report

Technology Transfer Opportunities in the National Laboratories

Savannah River Site

Aiken SC

May 1996

Prepared for:

Utility Federal Technology Opportunities (UFTO)


Edward Beardsworth



This report is part of a series examining technology opportunities at National Laboratories of possible interest to electric utilities


1. Summary
1 SRS Overview & Organization
3. SRS Technologies & Programs
10. SRS Contacts

This report is proprietary and confidential. It is for internal use by personnel of companies that are subscribers in the UFTO multi-client program. It is not to be otherwise copied or distributed except as authorized in writing.


This report details findings about technology and technology transfer opportunities at the Savannah River Site (SRS) that might be of strategic interest to electric utilities. It is based on a visit to SRS in December 1995, as part of the UFTO multiclient project.


Noting the tremendous scope of research underway in the research facilities of the U.S. government, and a very strong impetus on the government’s part to foster commercial partnering with industry and applications of the technology it has developed, the UFTO program has been established as a multi-client study of the opportunities thus afforded electric utilities.

SRS Overview

People at SRS are quick to point out that “we are not a national lab”. It is a DOE facility, focusing on national security, economic development and tech transfer, and environmental and waste management activities. It is operated under contract by the Westinghouse Savannah River Company (WSRC), and covers over 300 square miles in South Carolina. It employs about 16,000 people, including employees of WSRC, its subcontractors, the National Forest Service, and the Savannah River Ecology Lab. Also, DOE personnel and Wackenhut, a contract services firm.

In 1989, SRS began lifting the veil of secrecy under which it had been traditionally operated, while its mission changed dramatically with the end of the cold war. SRS was built in the 50’s to produce tritium and plutonium 239 for nuclear weapons and other isotopes for research purposes. There were five reactors, two chemical separation plants, a heavy water extraction plant, a nuclear fuel and target fabrication facility and waste management facilities. All five reactors are now permanently shut down, and while production of new tritium won’t be needed for many years, the reloading of tritium in the current supply of weapons is a continuing site mission, using the new state of the art Replacement Tritium Facility (RTF).

Waste Management and Environmental Restoration

Weapons production over the years has produced 35 million gallons of high-level radioactive waste on site. Just recently, the Defense Waste Processing Facility began operation. It bonds radioactive materials in borosilicate glass. There are also low-level solid and liquid radioactive waste, transuranic waste, mixed waste, hazardous waste, and sanitary waste. SRS has over 400 inactive waste and groundwater units in its restoration program, where over 80 acres of land have already been certified as remediated. Decontamination and decommissioning of SRS facilities is also part of the effort. More than 600 surplus facilities are currently being assessed, involving chemicals, radionuclides, and/or asbestos. Clean up will take decades, and the technology to do it plays a major part in the tech transfer and economic development missions of the site.

The Savannah River Technology Center (SRTC)

SRTC is an applied R&D organization (known as the “Lab” division) that provides technical support for the Savannah River Site (SRS), developing and testing equipment and techniques for nuclear materials processing, environmental remediation, environmental protection, waste processing, decontamination and decommissioning, and industrial uses of SRS technology.
SRTC has approximately 1000 employees. The four main departments are:

– Applied Science and Engineering Technology (instrumentation, robotics, corrosion, fluid dynamics, computational modeling)
– Waste Management & Environmental Technology ( high level waste, solid waste, environmental restoration, assessments and modeling)
– Chemical Process Technology (analytical services, instruments, and sensors; chemical and hydrogen technology)
– Technology Business Development (includes Industry Partnerships)

In addition, there are the Community Outreach Division and the Environmental Safety, Health and Quality Assurance Divisions. Also, the University of Georgia operates its Ecology Lab at the site.

Technology Transfer at SRS

SRS/SRTC is a very recent entrant to the Federal government’s tech transfer effort. They were first allowed to do CRADAs only less than two years ago.

John Veldman heads the Technology Business Development Department, which handles government and industry alliances. Karen Azzaro is Manager, Industrial Partnerships, and a number of people in that group are each assigned to distinct “product lines”, including remediation, sensors/robotics, vitrification, waste management and hydrogen.

The primary contact for UFTO is:
Beverly Skwarek, Industry Partnerships,
803-652-1836, fax 803-652-1898,

In an approach very similar to the one at Idaho National Engineering Lab (INEL), the Thermo Electron Corp. formed a new subsidiary to perform a contract at SRS to 1) support to SRS in market research and business plan preparation, and 2) evaluate and pursue commercialization of selected technologies.

Economic Development

SRS is aggressively pursuing new kinds of economic and business endeavors for the site, noting a number of unique attributes, especially its land, facilities, and human resources. The Multipurpose Pilot Plant Campus is an R&D facility now available to outside organizations, offering buildings, support structures and a number of special purpose facilities and laboratories.

Since the site has been exhaustively characterized, it serves as a “National Environmental Research Park” and as a testbed for new energy and environmental waste management technology, like NREL is for renewables. In one case, SRS has a CRADA with an industrial firm to develop a clean slurry fuel from municipal solid waste. Another proposed project is for a micro algae pond adjacent to a coal plant.

SRS leads the DOE national Groundwater Plumes Focus Area, charged with acquiring and applying the latest cleanup technology. In fact 2 of the 5 DOE Energy Management/Office of Technology Development focus areas are centered at SRS. They also have the lead on landfill stabilization and contaminant phenomena focus area (These two have recently been combined).

Another target area is commercial nuclear waste, with an idea to establish a nuclear “corridor” in the southeast, capitalizing on all the nuclear expertise and capabilities in the region

SRS Technologies & Programs

Covered in this report:

• Robotics 4
• Sensors & Instrumentation Systems — temperature, H2, chemicals, level sensing 5
• Materials — NDE, Failure Analysis, hot metallurgy, corrosion 5
• Waste Processing — High level waste, vitrification, decontamination, effluent treatment 6
• Environmental Sciences — data management, bioremediation, “land farming” 7
• Environment Permitting and Compliance 8
• Flyash utilization 8
• Hydrogen Technology — hydrides, fuel cells, refrigeration, EV 9
• Industrial Assistance — high efficiency air filtration 9

General Telephone #s
1-800-228-3843 Industry Partnerships
1-803-725-6211 Site Operator
1-803-725-3001 Site Information

• Robotics
W. Ivan Lewis, Manager, Robotics Support, 803-725-3527
Greg Teese, Principal Engineer, 803-725-2051

Based on needs arising out of SRS’s own suite of low pressure/temperature reactors built in the 50’s, SRS has extensive capabilities to design, develop, build, install and operate unique robots, instrumentation, teleoperators and special purpose mechanical equipment for use in radioactive and hazardous environments (such as reactors, chemical separation facilities and waste processing and storage plants) for surveying, inspection, decontamination, dismantling and manipulation functions. These systems can be autonomous, or have a human operator in the loop

SRS has adapted a number of commercially available robot systems. For example:

SWAMI, Stored Waste Autonomous Mobile Inspector, is a modified version of the HelpMate robot produced by HelpMate Robotics, Inc. It will perform the required weekly inspections of drums of waste, improving efficiency, documentation and accuracy, and greatly reducing personnel exposure. Robots like this will become increasingly important for future increasing waste inspection needs associated with decommissioning. A second generation version SWAMI II, will identify rust spots, dents and blisters on drums.

Remote Controlled Mobile Devices, e.g., a forklift; a Bobcat Loader/Excavator; a Mobile Teleoperator equipped with manipulators of various kinds, or high pressure water scabbling, vacuum, superheated water, or pneumatic tools. A crane-like vehicle has been used to observe operations at a radioactive work site.

These systems can go on inspection tours looking for fire, security, radiation, leaks etc.

Pipe Crawlers range from a 2 inch inspection device, to one that can adjust to varying pipe dimensions, and units for pipe diameters up to 24″-36″ with ultrasonic inspection or welding capabilities:

FERRET (flowpath evaluation and reconnaissance by remote-field eddy-current testing) is an inspection device for small (2 inch) diameter pipes, originally developed to negotiate multiple tight bend elbows in SRS’s own storage tank cooling systems. It is propelled by the fluids already in the piping system. With it’s long range (1000 ft.) and sophisticated electronics, it could be adapted to any number of applications, from leak detection to corrosion detection in buildings or plant systems.

The Elbow Cutting Pipe Crawler can remove sections of pipe in 36 inch ductwork, and is capable of crawling through 90 degree elbows and up vertical pipe, carrying lights, camera and plasma arc torch, able to cut 1/2 inch stainless steel.
(ref: Nuclear News, Jan. ’96, Vol. 39, No. 1)

In-Service Inspection Pipe Crawler and Carriage can negotiate up to 3 elbows and dynamically change to accommodate pipe diameters from 12 to 16 inches, carrying a 100 pound payload. It is tether controlled and carries lights and an attachable inspection carriage with a 4 degree of freedom ultrasonic weld inspection device.

SRS is active in the Utility and Manufacturers Robotics Users Group (UMRUG) [see article in Nuclear News, Oct. ’95, Vol 38, No. 13, by Peter Hanby of Com Ed, who is UMRUG Chair].
• Sensors & Instrumentation Systems — temperature, H2, chemicals

Paul Cloessner, Manager, Analytical Services, 803-725-2198

Stanley Nave, Principal Scientist, Sensor & Analytic Technology, 803-725-1355

Wayne Jenkins, Manager, Sensor and Analyzer Technology, 803-725-3049

Pat O’Rourke, former Fellow Scientist, Sensor & Analytic Technology

Now with a small company developing applications, 803-652-3663

Optical temperature sensor, an R&D 100 Award winner, measures temperatures from -200° to +600° C, based on temperature induced shifts in the absorption spectrum of selected materials. With no metallic or conductive components, it is immune to electrical or magnetic interference. Also, it requires no calibration. It is ideally suited for remote, inaccessible and harsh environments, e.g. petrochemical processes, paper mills, nuclear facilities, underground, underwater or in space. (NOTE: a licensee is interested in developing a transmission line temperature monitor that would allow greater loading of lines. They would welcome utility help in determining the benefits and market potential.)

Fiber optic chemical sensors provide a means to detect the presence of specific chemicals in various forms and solutions, and can be used in industrial process (real time) control, exhaust stacks, ground water, etc. They operate by analyzing changes to the light spectrum as the sensor probe interacts with the surroundings. SRS has developed a number of complete sensor systems based on sol-gel colorimetric indicators, a new class of composite materials which change color in the presence of certain chemicals, and Raman spectroscopy.

Chemometrics: Advances in the software permit automatic data analysis and robust fiber optic sensors.

Hydrogen sensor — A new idea is under development for an all-fiber optic sensor which will work in reactive gas or liquid streams. (They aren’t in a position to discuss this, but it may be helpful if utility industry needs are explained to them.)

Radiation dose below background — working on some ideas for this, eliminating Compton scattering with digital signal processing techniques. Could be used for an in-situ real time monitor for the water in spent fuel storage tanks.

• Materials — NDE, Failure Analysis, hot metallurgy, corrosion

Tami Capeletti, Manager, Materials Technology Section, 803-725-3576

Extensive facilities and capabilities for hot metallurgy, failure analysis, mechanical testing, corrosion testing, etc.

Recycle of contaminated steels — Working with INEL, this technology is in use at SRS, using radwaste containers made of reclaimed mostly-decontaminated steel.

Residual Stress Measurement — a new experimental technique uses laser speckle pattern interferometry and spot heating to permit remote non-contact measurement Results are promising and could lead to development of a system where the technical complexities can be easily handled. Martin Pechersky, 803-725-1137,

• Waste Processing Technology — High level waste, decontamination, effluent treatment

Prevention and Treatment of Chemical and Radioactive waste.

Dan McCabe, 803-725-2054

Dave Hobbs, 803-725-238

Steve Wach, Business Development, 803-725-808

Effluent and Process Treatment — A wide variety of technologies (e.g. membranes, filtration, ion exchange, solvent extraction, chemical treatment, etc.) are applied to address unique streams or conditions (e.g. removal of organics, metals and radionuclides to drinking water standards.)

Waste Disposal Technology — SRS develops disposal concepts and validates them with lab and field experiments, assessing performance risk. They also characterize and select disposal sites for radioactive, hazardous and sanitary wastes. Disposal modeling deals with both the source term and ground water/goechemistry, and field tests examine environmental transport.

Vitrification — For waste immobilization, SRS has a internationally recognized and comprehensive in-house capability in vitrification, including glass formulation and process design and testing. Created by the need to manage high-level radioactive and mixed waste, this expertise is now being applied to low-level radioactive wastes and contaminated asbestos, ion exchange resins and medical wastes. A major system just went on line.

Decontamination and Volume Reduction — SRS provides comprehensive consulting services including field support to evaluate and demonstrate best available technology and to treat equipment, facilities and soils for chemical and radionuclide contamination. Techniques used to decontaminate equipment include carbon dioxide blasting, strippable coatings, foamers and Kelly machines.

Process Modeling and Evaluation — Comprehensive capabilities that integrate physical and economic considerations and support pollution prevention, process development and optimization, life cycle cost analysis and business planning. Commercial software packages are adapted to study the dynamic and steady state behavior of complex systems (chemical and fluid dynamics and heat transfer), and providing graphical/pictorial outputs.

Facilities and Laboratories included analytical and materials labs, radioactive handling facilities and a number of demonstration facilities. The Multipurpose Pilot Plant Campus is in effect a “user facility” (though not formally set up as one), and has 135,000 sq. ft of permitted facilities and systems. The Effluent Treatment Facility removes organics, salts, mercury and radionuclides using reverse osmosis, filtration, and a number of other technologies.

Pollution Prevention — SRS has developed a number of solutions to DOD and industry needs to reduce pollution, e.g. by prolonging the life process chemicals through separation and purification, or to transition to supercritical CO2 cleaning processes.

• Environmental Sciences Deborah Moore-Shedrow, Manager, 803-275-5179
Environmental Biotechnology — Contact Dr. Terry Hazen, 803-557-7713

10 senior professionals with strong technical reputations. Work effectively with regulators. In situ and bioreactor systems, develop national protocols. Biofouling, biocorrosion, bioaerosols (e.g. Legionnaires), monitoring, expert witness. A number of bioproducts licensed to and in use by industry.

Methane enhanced in situ bioremediation is an 1995 R&D 100 winner combines natural gas injection with air stripping to speed the degradation and removal of chlorinated solvents in ground water and sediment. Tests have shown it to be much more efficient and cost-effective than other methods

Other bioremediation techniques include the use of added phosphates to fuel bacterial growth and reaction rates.. ThePHOSter process involves adding a safe gaseous form of of phosphorous to injected air, resulting in dramatic remediation rate increases.

Risk-based ecological restoration — risk based decision making for selection, design and deployment of remediation technologies, and use of “green solutions” (e.g. “ecological detoxification” where a balanced ecosystem is developed with the capability to break down the contaminants). Prepared-bed Land Farming has been certified in several sites. Field screening — systems for rapid inexpensive on-site analyses.

Groundwater restoration — optimize existing clean up systems and develop new processes

Treatment, stabilization and containment of solid residues, and assessment of long-term risks

Associated Capabilities: hydrogeology, ecosystem management, data synthesis, analysis.

Environmental Data Atlas Hal Mackey, 803-725-5322

This Integrated GIS for Environmental Applications provides efficient access to large amounts of diverse spatial information, including GIS and remotely sensed data relating to physical and man-made features. Spatial data keys link all data to a common geographical data base. All data is accessible at the scientists’ desktops, regardless of what type of computer they’re using. The system incorporates both bibliographic and photographic data and scanned maps. It provides sophisticated browsing and modeling capabilities by taking advantage of the latest advancements in database, programming language and networking integration.

[Ref: “Design and Implementation of an Integrated GIS…”, D. Cowen,, Photogrammatic Engineering and Remote Sensing, v 61,#11, Nov. 95, pp. 1393-1404.]


DataDelve Client and EcoTrack Server Jim Bowers, 803-725-5213

This is an spatial data system for environmental information to support managers and professionals performing environmental assessments during remediation and restoration activities, particularly sites under CERCLA. The system is a client server application using Heuristic Optimized Processing System (HOPS, International supplies this commercial database engine) which permits rapid access to and analysis of very large and diverse data files. [Ref: see complete description in SRS report # SWRC-RP-95-194]


• Environment Permitting and Compliance

SRS Environmental Program, Chuck Hayes, 803-725-8838

SRS has a great many facilities and processes requiring active attention to environmental permitting and compliance. They have developed a strong capability to keep track of all the complex requirements, i.e. to ensure compliance with regulations and to monitor and document the impact of operations on the environment and coordinated all contact with regulators, while maximizing the Site’s overall programmatic goals.

Water, Wastewater & Surface Water: NPDES Permitting, construction permits, operational compliance (82 NPDES outfalls; 216 wastewater permits, 167 drinking water permits).

Air (CAA Mandates): NESHAP radionuclide and Asbestos, construction (any new source), compliance (200 air permits).

Solid & Hazardous Waste: prevention and minimization, permitting, operations and disposal compliance.

Environmental Restoration & Groundwater Protections: Waste site closures, CERCLA, etc. (over 300 CERCLA/RCRA waste units).

Because the Site has such a wide range of situations, they often must come up with creative solutions and approaches to deal with unusual permitting applications. In some cases, site-wide permitting has been successful, and they sometimes use “generic applications” that can be adapted to later changes.

Customer Service Tools developed for internal use could be made available to others:

— Permit Forecasting/Tracking Database keeps tabs on all permits already in place, and based on data on future needs and new facilities plans it provides a timetable and early warning system about steps that need to be taken.

— Environmental Permitting “HOW” Manual is a how-to cookbook on permitting.

Contact Laurie Coward…


• Flyash utilization
The Savannah River Ecology Lab, University of Georgia, is located on at SRS. They are working on an EPRI TC project with SCE&G touse flyash as a soil amendment. The idea is to apply the maximum amount possible on land not involved in a food chain, including sod farms, golf courses, athletic fields, and eroded areas needing rehabilitation. The only concern is ground water, and the project is measuring over 60 parameters of water, plants and soil properties in tests where as much as 500 tons per acre have been applied. This work will be published in the open literature.

In another test, flyash and chicken litter are being applied at 250 tons/acre (a depth of 2 inches) to amend soil at an airport construction soil fill. It improves the soil’s physical condition, the soil/plant/water relationships, and the silt range (i.e. if soil is too coarse or too fine).

Contact: Prof. Domy Adriano, 803-725-2472;


• Hydrogen Technology — hydrides, fuel cells, refrigeration, EV

“HyTech” is a new “virtual laboratory” centered at the Savannah River Technology Center, focused on development of new hydrogen technology. It draws on the resources of over 80 scientists and 40 groups at SRTC. As the nation’s primary Tritium production and technology facility since 1955, in support of defense and environmental programs, SRS has tremendous expertise and capabilities which makes possible a tremendous synergy with commercial hydrogen programs. For example their Replacement Tritium Facility is the single largest use of metal hydride technology. HyTech anticipates important new developments for storage, composite membranes for separation, sensors, hydrogen production, materials compatible with hydrogen, and even a novel new metal hydride high-COP heat-pump refrigerator concept.

Contact is Dr. James Knight, 803-725-1089, or Ted Motyka 803-725-3665


SRS, through its Economic Development Division, is also leading a major program to develop a hydrogen fueled bus, to be demonstrated in the local area. Hydrogen will be generated onsite using water electrolysis and metal hydride storage. Low temperature hydride storage will provide the onboard hydrogen, and the bus will use a series-hybrid electric drive system (Westinghouse) with an IC engine that will be adaptable to future fuel cell systems. The schedule calls for testing in mid 1996, with city operation thereafter.

Contact: Dr. William A. Summers, 803-652-1846

• Industrial Assistance Program — High Efficiency Air Filtration

Mr. D. Maynard Dykes is the SRS site authority, and a world-class expert, in air filtration. He helps government and industry with design, tests, test methods, procedures, procurement specifications, systems qualification, and health/safety/environmental issues.

For example, whenever nuclear isotopes are used, there are special requirements to maintain a decontamination factor with filtration. At SRS, he’s contributed to dramatic reductions in the number and cost of systems required. For textile companies, he’s helped with air balance, cold spots, and lint problems. HVAC consultants can generally do heating and cooling, but are less likely to be able to deal effectively with problems like contaminants. Mr. Dyke trains people in-house at SRS and elsewhere to be able to deal with these issues.

Maynard Dykes, 803-952-3628

SRS Contacts

The primary contact for UFTO is:

Beverly Skwarek, Industry Partnerships,
803-652-1836, fax 803-652-1898,

General Telephone #s:
1-800-228-3843 Industry Partnerships
1-803-725-6211 Site Operator
1-803-725-3001 Site Information