The Factory Acceptance Testing of the Static Detonation Chamber (SDC) is the focus of this month’s project update. The SDC has been selected to destroy the mustard munitions of the Blue Grass stockpile. Site preparation and construction is ongoing, while the fabrication and testing of the actual unit is being conducted overseas.
The testing process, conducted in the Dynasafe workshop in Kristinehamn, Sweden, in early June 2015, ensures the equipment will meet its intended purpose before it is shipped to the Blue Grass plant, minimizing time needed to address any deficiencies.
After the assembly and systemization of the system, the testing is performed in two parts:
- Cold Detonation Test. This involves explosives being placed inside the detonation chamber and detonated to stress the system to 125 percent of its design limits. This test was completed in April 2015 and witnessed by Blue Grass engineering and explosive subject matter experts.
- Endurance Testing. This step involves the operation of the system in an environment that closely simulates expected Blue Grass plant conditions. It allows the team to ensure the system is fully operational prior to shipment to the site. All noted deficiencies are corrected before shipment or before site acceptance.
The entire process totaled thousands of man-hours of preparation, two full weeks of actual testing and hundreds of man-hours of data review and approval. Two days were required for the Cold Detonation Test, five days for the evaluations and 72 hours for endurance testing. In addition to these time periods, there were also many hours of preparation work and data review.
Next steps for the SDC include packaging and shipping to the Blue Grass plant with arrival expected in August 2015.
Once received, the SDC will be installed in the Explosive Destruction Technology Enclosure Building, which is currently under construction and expected to be ready in fall 2015. Once installed, the equipment will undergo a similar test period called the Site Acceptance Test. An Operational Readiness Review will be completed before actual chemical operations, which are scheduled to start in 2017.
Site Construction Progress
Construction: Almost 97.1 percent complete
Systemization: 35 percent complete
Construction Turnover: 477 of 585 Quality Data Packages
Around the site, ongoing work includes:
- Completion of the Entry Control Facility
- Commissioning of heating, ventilation and air conditioning chillers, which are now providing chilled water to the Control and Support Building
- Continued installation of agent monitoring system tubing and monitors
- Commissioning activities for the Agent Collection System
- Installation of commodities such as piping, wiring and cable in most of the main buildings