Low-Cost Strippable Fixatives

Period of Performance: 01/01/2003 - 12/31/2003


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Gumbs Assoc., Inc.
East Brunswick, NJ 08816
Principal Investigator


72801S03-I This project addresses the need to control airborne radiological contamination by developing a novel fixative and assessing its ability to both affix contamination and contain dispersible alpha contamination, completely and permanently and at low cost. The specific goal will be the development of a series of strippable coatings, based on high-molecular-weight polystyrene/acrylic graft copolymers, whose cost is estimated at one-tenth the cost of existing strippable coatings. The fixatives will meet the waste acceptance criteria for the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant. In Phase I, strippable coatings with strong mechanical properties, such as tensile strength, will be prepared and evaluated as removable fixatives, permitting the use of thin films with fast drying times. They will be evaluated on contaminated horizontal and vertical surfaces using finely dispersed pigments and stable isotopes of cesium and strontium to simulate contaminants. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits as described by awardee: Low-cost methods for controlling airborne radiological contamination would facilitate the dismantlement of facilities during deactivation and decommissioning activities.