MV Cape Ray Signals DTRA 'Mission Complete'

By George Backwell
Wednesday, August 20, 2014
DTRA Seal

The Defense Threat Reduction Agency announces the successful completion of the Cape Ray's mission to destroy Syria's chemical weapons components at sea.

The Defense Threat Reduction Agency/U.S. Strategic Command Center for Combating Weapons of Mass Destruction (DTRA/SCC-WMD) is pleased to announce the completion of the destruction of one-hundred percent of the Syrian chemical weapons materials transferred on-board the Cape Ray using the installed Field Deployable Hydrolysis System (FDHS).

The accomplishments onboard the Cape Ray represent the first time chemical weapons have been destroyed aboard ship on the open sea. A proven technology, the hydrolysis system was turned into a field-deployable system for ship-board application in just 5 months. The system uses heat, water and bleach-like chemicals to destroy the materials into effluent, which will be disposed of in accordance with all applicable international laws, regulations and treaties, at commercial sites.

The agency has been involved in the efforts to deal with the Syrian chemicals, specifically—planning and synchronizing the evaluation of the threats, the options for destroying them, and the installation of the FDHS. Onboard the modified Cape Ray, a team of chemists and engineers accomplished their work in international waters on the Mediterranean Sea. They destroyed approximately 600 tons of chemical weapons material that included mustard gas and components for the nerve agent sarin.

“I want to congratulate the dedicated team of professionals aboard the Cape Ray, as well as our interagency and international partners, on the successful completion of Cape Ray's mission to destroy approximately 600 metric tons of chemical weapons materials,” said Kenneth A. Myers, Director, DTRA/SCC-WMD. “These materials could have been used to make countless chemical weapons, and now have all been eliminated in an environmentally safe and effective way. This historic mission would not have been possible without the herculean efforts of all our partners and our DTRA/SCC team.”

 

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