Downtime at the Pueblo Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant allowed staff to review issues experienced with the Munitions Washout System and make changes for greater efficiency.
“In the first year of operations, we spent a lot of time maintaining the washout system,” said Ryan Williams, deputy site project manager, PCAPP. “While agent destruction operations were paused, we were able to make changes to improve equipment availability.”
The high-pressure wash water system was rebuilt and hydraulic ram nozzles were replaced with hardened spray nozzles.
“We made a lot of entries to replace nozzles or the entire ram. The hardened nozzles are more erosion resistant,” Williams said.
Techniques for replacing and repairing the valves that control the flow of high pressure wash water to the Cavity Access Machines were evaluated and a work plan implemented. Previously, the valves were rebuilt in the high-pressure wash water room, as needed. The new process calls for the valves to be rebuilt in the maintenance shop, tested and stored for reuse, Williams said.
A crossover conveyor, which will allow munitions to be fed from the washout system to either Munition Treatment Unit, the equipment that decontaminates munition bodies with heat, is also being designed, Williams said.
Redesigned splash guards, designed last year to contain liquid from over-pressurized rounds, were installed the week of June 25.
MWS operations resumed June 13, after being paused since late 2017 to deal with equipment issues and refine processes.