SPECIAL TESTS OF PLUTONIUM SHIPPING CONTAINERS

Two test series are described which were intended to demonstrate the air transport-worthiness of typical plutonium shipping containers. Historically, testing of radioactive material shipping containers has been limited to certification testing to the existing, applicable specifications. These special tests, however, were devised to establish failure thresholds and to demonstrate survivability under much more severe environments. In the first test series, three container types were subjected to the sequential impact, penetration, crush, fire, and immersion tests required by the federal government for aircraft flight recorder certification. In only one case was there evidence of slight leakage of the surrogate from a container and only after the entire test sequence was completed. The second test series was designed to determine the failure threshold of three container types when subjected to high-speed impacts suggestive of severe aircraft accidents. The parameters evaluated were container type, impact speed, impact attitude, and target. Test results indicate that the containers are sensitive to all parameters, but particularly so to attitude and speed. However, in only a few impact tests were the containers sufficiently damaged so as to release surrogate material. (ERA citation 01:026284)

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Symposium on the design, construction and testing of packaging for the safe transport of radioactive materials, Vienna, Austria, 23 Aug 1976.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Sandia Laboratories

    P.O. Box 5800
    Albuquerque, NM  USA  87115

    Energy Research and Development Administration

    20 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
    Washington, DC  USA  20590
  • Authors:
    • Bonzon, L L
    • McWhirter, M
  • Publication Date: 1976

Media Info

  • Pagination: 20 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00146586
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Technical Information Service
  • Report/Paper Numbers: CONF-760813-8
  • Contract Numbers: AT(29-1)-789
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Feb 16 1977 12:00AM