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Technology Factsheet

Peristaltic Crawler for Pipeline Unplugging

Category: Robotics > Other > Other
Reference # : Model No :

This technology is an in-situ peristaltic crawler designed for entering and unplugging high-level waste pipelines. The peristaltic crawler is a pneumatically operated crawler that propels itself by a sequence of pressurization/depressurization of cavities (inner tubes). The changes in pressure result in the translation of the vessel by peristaltic movements. The crawler is equipped with a high pressure water nozzle for effective pipeline unplugging. The technology also includes a front-end fiber-optic camera to perform pipeline inspection operations. The crawler is capable of navigating in 3-inch diameter pipelines at different grades at speeds of up to 38 ft/hr.


Provides a novel technology for HLW pipeline unplugging at the Hanford and Savannah River Sites. Ensures smooth operation of high-level waste transfers, assisting tank farm engineers with meeting milestones.


This technology has been thoroughly tested on the bench-scale and engineering-scale testbeds at the Applied Research Center at FIU; the technology has not been deployed in a radioactive environment at a DOE site.




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