Mobile lab data

The Mobile Organic Monitoring Laboratory uses state-of-the-art air monitoring instrumentation to detect a wide range of chemicals – potentially up to 46 of the 61 chemicals of potential concern.
The lab:

  • Provides real-time chemical vapors monitoring
  • Locates and monitors vapor plumes
  • Monitors general tank farm area for volatile organic compounds (VOCs)
  • Monitors exhaust stack and passive breather filters
From May to September 2016, the mobile lab was deployed on the Hanford Site for the first time and performed several one-week-long campaigns for air monitoring. These campaigns were not continuous and data was collected during static conditions (no waste-disturbing activities took place during these times).

Data from July and August 2016 the mobile lab is listed below. Each map shows the route taken (in red), stops where stationary monitoring took place (red with blue circle), and the data that was collected (yellow star).

Mobile Lab results:

By definition, the OEL is an 8-hour time weighted average that establishes a limit for personnel exposures to hazardous chemicals. It is the exposure level to which a person may be exposed for 8 hours/day, 40 hours/week for 40 years and have no expectation of adverse health effects. In this study, area vapor concentration measurements were made to better understand the hazardous vapor exposures that workers may receive. These measurements are only compared to OEL concentrations to give them context. It is not accurate nor appropriate to interpret these short duration measurements (2-seconds) as worker exposures levels. Since the OEL is defined as a time weighted average, it is more appropriate to compare it to daily average vapor concentrations. Short duration excursions above the OEL concentration are not significant.

The PTR-MS results for but-3-en-2-one + 2,3 dihydrofuran + 2,5 dihydrofuran should not be reported without appropriate caveat because

    1) the results are suspect due to a known biogenic interferant (methacrolein) that is expected to be in concentrations that occasionally exceed the dihydrofuran OEL and
    2) this combination of COPCs have OEL concentrations that differ by a factor of 200, which provide widely variant bases for such results as ‘no. measurement between AL and OEL’ and ‘maximum continuous time above OEL.’ Nitrosamine results are also suspect due to interferants identified during the background study.

Mobile Lab sampling during AY-102 retrieval

Sampling during the AY102 to AP-102 retrieval consisted of Industrial Hygiene direct reading instruments, the Vapor Monitoring Detection System (VDMS), and the RJ Lee Mobile Laboratory.

The Mobile Lab takes measurements every two seconds. During this time, nine compounds were detected. None of these detections were sustained, and were similar to those found while the mobile lab was sampling offsite.

A total count of over 83 million measurements were taken throughout this time period.

The analysis of the data shows there does not appear to be a measureable increase in tank farm vapor concentrations either during or after the retrieval periods inside the tank farms, along the AP fence line, or around the A Complex. See below for more detail.