Plasma destruction of battlefield chemical and biological warfare agents

E. O'Hair, J. Dickens, J. Fralick, L. Farrar

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Thermal plasmas are being evaluated for use in the destruction of deadly chemical and biological warfare agents. The technology approach consists of employing an electric are to establish a plasma forming gas plume used to kill the harmful agents. The approach has been demonstrated on surrogate chemical and biological warfare agents. The harmful agents are rapidly destroyed, e.g., within a few seconds. Three different plasmas have been evaluated for their effectiveness to destroy harmful agents. The approaches used include nitrogen plasma, air plasma and a novel water plasma arcjet. The work incorporates an evaluation of the durability of the plasma arcjet technology for this application, e.g., cyclic life and steady-state durability. The follow-on phase of this project will result in a prototype system development suitable for field application. Anticipated benefits the development of an effective system that will allow rapid and for effective decontamination of surfaces that have been contaminated with chemical and biological warfare agents. No harmful byproducts will be produced. Additionally, the methods developed have application in the destruction of medical wastes, hazardous industrial wastes and in the destruction of hazardous materials associated with worldwide demilitarization activities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)182
Number of pages1
JournalIEEE International Conference on Plasma Science
StatePublished - 1998
EventProceedings of the 1998 IEEE International Conference on Plasma Science - Raleigh, NC, USA
Duration: Jun 1 1998Jun 4 1998

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