Decontamination


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decontamination

[dē·kən‚tam·ə′nā·shən]
(engineering)
The removing of chemical, biological, or radiological contamination from, or the neutralizing of it on, a person, object, or area.

Decontamination

 

the removal (destruction, neutralization) of toxic chemical agents from contaminated weapons, combat materiel, terrain, clothing, and food supplies; it is one of the measures for eliminating the aftereffects of an enemy chemical attack.

Decontamination of contaminated weapons and combat and other materiel is implemented by various mechanical methods using decontaminating solutions and solvents or by vaporizing the toxic chemical agents using hot gases. Terrain is decontaminated with the aid of decontamination machines (the irrigating of the terrain with decontaminating solutions or the spreading of friable decontaminating agents) or in certain cases by removing the upper layer of soil (or snow) with the aid of road machines, by isolating the contaminated surface of the terrain by covering it over with uncontaminated earth (or snow), or by laying wooden planks or other kinds of flooring. In the case of hard surfaces (asphalt, concrete) toxic chemical agents are removed by a stream of water from irrigating or fire-fighting machinery. Decontamination of outer clothing and underwear is carried out by boiling them in water or aqueous soda solutions or by treating them with decontaminating solutions. Contaminated water is decontaminated by chlorination, filtration through special substances, or boiling. Food supplies and forage heavily contaminated (saturated) with toxic chemical agents are destroyed. Products in hermetically sealed metal cans or glass bottles are decontaminated by boiling in a soda solution or by wiping them with decontaminating solutions or solvents; wooden containers are treated by airing them. The suitability for use of various foodstuffs is determined by chemical analysis. Ventilation (drafts) is used to decontaminate premises contaminated with gases or vapors from toxic chemical agents.

A. P. SHALIAPIN


Decontamination

 

removal of radioactive materials from uniforms (clothing), weapons, materiel, transportation, food supplies, terrain, and other objects; one of the measures for eliminating the effects of enemy use of nuclear weaponry. Decontamination may be either partial or complete.

Partial decontamination is implemented when the combat situation requires the immediate use (expenditure) of the contaminated weaponry or materiel, in order to decrease the extent of its contamination to some degree. Materiel and transportation equipment are decontaminated with special machines and instruments using scouring solutions or water; uniforms (clothing) are decontaminated by various mechanical methods; supplies are decontaminated by washing with water or by removing the contaminated layer. Water is decontaminated by using special filtration devices.

Complete decontamination by special equipment makes it possible to decrease the contamination to such a level that external irradiation and the probability of illness resulting from contact of radioactive materials with the skin or in the body become minimal. Completeness of the decontamination is checked by radiometers.

B. I. KOLOTUSHKIN

References in periodicals archive ?
CBRN weapons cause significant environmental damage themselves; used decontaminants, contaminated expendables, and runoff resulting from decontamination operations could leave additional long-lasting contamination.
The IAEA agreed with Fukushima Prefecture last December to implement joint projects for radioactive decontamination and residents' health, and sent experts for coordination of the projects in late February.
The decontamination process occurs both within and outside the machine, to create a continual supply of hydroxyl radicals dispersed throughout the room, making it effective even without processing all of the air through the unit.
Additional considerations for mass decontamination in a DSCA environment.
This technology has been used successfully to develop products such as our nonwoven decontamination wipe, Fibertect," said Ron Kendall, director of TIEHH.
Eight local Trusts, including the Royal, Liverpool Women's Hospital and Arrowe Park collaborated to form the Mersey Decontamination Project five years ago to comply with stricter Government guidelines on sterilisation.
Participants recognized during the planning process and exercise execution that further discussion of the above two perspectives of DOD decontamination would benefit the CBRNE response community and emergency responders in general.
For example, while contaminated air is a likely vector for chemical agents, the immediate decontamination of air is not considered the main response action.
5% as much as with decontamination by bottle rinsing, and no water is required.
Through the end of February 2006, USEC has invoiced DOE for a total of about $152 million in decontamination costs.
Similarly valuable is the chapter on decontamination because it provides insight on how to respond to the challenge of recreating a safe environment in which to live and work after a biological attack.

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