Industry Article: ZIRCOSOL Solvent Cleans a Pb-210-Contaminated Heat Exchanger

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Publication: World Oil
Volume: August
Issue: 2013
Publication Date: 08/01/2013

A North Sea operator faced the challenge of decommissioning a stainless steel heat exchanger on a gas production platform. The heat exchanger was contaminated with radioactive Pb-210 scale. Naturally occurring radioactive material (NORM) can result from co-precipitation or electrochemical deposition of radioactive elements. With management of NORM and other contaminants continuing to be an ever-increasing challenge for operators, conventional solutions fail to address all decontamination issues. The ZIRCOSOL solvent, which is part of the EXKAL service line that includes comprehensive chemical technology solutions, was recommended as a possible solution to decontaminate the heat exchanger. The ZIRCOSOL solvent is a unique chemistry designed to remove radioactive metal deposits from NORM-contaminated equipment using a simple static soak process. The ZIRCOSOL solvent enabled the efficient, safe removal of radioactive metal deposits in the heat exchanger that could not be cleaned by mechanical means.

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