Validation of the extent of water removal in a dry storage system using an industrial vacuum drying procedure is needed. Water remaining in casks upon completion of vacuum drying can lead to cladding corrosion, embrittlement, and breaching, as well as fuel degradation. In order to address the lack of time-dependent industrial drying data, this study employs a vacuum drying procedure to evaluate the efficiency of water removal over time in a scaled system. Isothermal conditions are imposed to generate baseline pressure and moisture data for comparison to future tests under heated conditions. A pressure vessel was constructed to allow for the emplacement of controlled quantities of water and connections to a pumping system and instrumentation. Measurements of pressure and moisture content were obtained over time during sequential vacuum hold points, where the vacuum flow rate was throttled to draw pressures from 100 torr down to 0.7 torr. The pressure rebound, dew point, and water content were observed to eventually diminish with increasingly lower hold points, indicating a reduction in retained water.

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