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RSS FeedsMolecules, Vol. 26, Pages 6234: Short Alternative Route for Nuclear Fuel Reprocessing Based on Organic Phase Self-Splitting (Molecules)

 
 

15 october 2021 13:11:13

 
Molecules, Vol. 26, Pages 6234: Short Alternative Route for Nuclear Fuel Reprocessing Based on Organic Phase Self-Splitting (Molecules)
 


A more sustainable management of natural resources and the establishment of processes allowing a joint management of nuclear materials to avoid their diversion from their civilian use are two issues for the nuclear industry. Short alternatives to existing processes have therefore been proposed based on known systems available, tributylphosphate (TBP), for the separation of actinides by liquid/liquid extraction. Proof of concept of such alternative has been established on the uranium(VI)/thorium(IV) system. From an organic phase consisting of a mixture of TBP/n-dodecane loaded with uranium and thorium, two fluxes have been obtained: the first contains almost all of the thorium in the presence of uranium in a controlled ratio, the second contains surplus uranium. Two levers were selected to control the spontaneous separation of the organic phase: the addition of concentrated nitric acid, or the temperature variation. Best results have been obtained using a temperature drop in the liquid/liquid extraction process, and variations in process conditions have been studied. Final metal recovery and solvent recycling have also been demonstrated, opening the door for further process development.


 
50 viewsCategory: Biochemistry, Chemistry, Molecular Biology
 
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