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Online monitoring capabilities for harsh environments
September 30, 2022 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Shirmir D. Branch
Chemist, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
The application of online monitoring to harsh environments, such as nuclear waste streams or molten salt reactors, presents the potential to enhance fundamental processes while significantly reducing operation cost, risk, and time. Optical spectroscopy as an online monitoring tool serves as a rapid, non-
destructive method to accurately analyze, predict, and control chemical processes in a variety of matrices. When applied to molten salt reactors, online monitoring can provide key fundamental information that includes not only total concentration of target analytes, but also factors such as oxidation state and speciation, which gives valuable and continuous insight into process conditions. This capability serves as a powerful tool throughout the nuclear fuel cycle, which aids in meeting the needs of next generation renewable energy.
Shirmir D. Branch is a Staff Chemist at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). Her current work as PNNL is in research and development in Inorganic and Analytical Chemistry. Her research interests include electrophoretic separations; the development of robust electrode sensor materials; electroanalytical and spectroelectrochemical characterization in various harsh environments, including molten salts. She completed her PhD in Analytical Chemistry from the University of Cincinnati in 2018. She traveled to PNNL in 2015 to complete research for her degree in the development of harsh environment spectroelectrochemical sensors and became a staff scientist in 2018. Shirmir is also volunteers with the American Chemical Society, as an executive committee member with the Richland Local Section and with American Nuclear Society, as an executive committee member in the Nuclear Fuel Cycle & Waste Management Division.
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