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  • 1 Czech Technical University Department of Nuclear Chemistry 115 19 Praha 1, Brehova 7 Czech Republic
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Abstract  

Kinetics of Eu sorption on sandy sediment from Gorleben, Germany, containing humic substances, was studied by radiotracer method in batch experiments at very low europium concentration (3.4.10-8 mol/l), with the aim to find kinetic parameters suitable for modeling Eu migration in bed of the sediment and to elucidate the mechanism of the sorption. Experiments were evaluated using a new simplified method taking into account simultaneous sorption/desorption of Eu on the walls of sorption vessel. Five kinetic functions were tested, of which that describing diffusion in inert surface layer of sorbent proved most suitable. The effects of pH (3.0-8.8) by addition of Aldrich humic acid (10 mg/l), addition of hydrogencarbonates (5.10-3 mol/l) and preequilibration of the sediment with solution or of Eu with solution were examined. From the results it has been concluded that the kinetics and mechanism of the sorption strongly depend on pH. At pH 4.8 Eu is sorbed mainly as humate complex from the solution of humic acid. The addition of humic acid accelerates the sorption. Carbonate complexes of Eu are the probable forms sorbed at pH 8.8. The presence of humic substances in the slightly alkaline solutions suppresses the rate of the sorption due to slow dissociation of Eu-humate complexes.