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  • 1 Fuel Chemistry Division, Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research, Kalpakkam, 603 102 India
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Abstract  

Lithium assisted electrochemical reduction of U3O8 in the room temperature ionic liquid (RTIL), N-methyl-N-propylpiperidinium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide (MPPiNTf2), was studied to explore the feasibility of using RTILs for direct electrochemical reduction of uranium oxide at near ambient temperature. The electrochemical behavior of Li+ in MPPiNTf2 at stainless steel electrode was investigated by cyclic voltammetry and chronoamperometry. The cyclic voltammogram of LiNTf2 in MPPiNTf2 at 373 K consisted of a surge in cathodic current occurring at a potential of −2.8 V (vs. Fc/Fc+) due to the reduction of Li(I) to metallic form. The nucleation phenomenon observed in the voltammogram was investigated by chronoamperometry. Electrodeposition of metallic lithium on U3O8 particles contained in a stainless steel (SS) basket was carried out to examine the feasibility of reducing U3O8 to metallic form. The results are discussed in this paper.