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Abstract  

Bench-Scale studies on the partitioning and recovery of minoractinides from the actual and synthetic sulphate-bearing high level waste (SBHLW) solutions have been carried out by giving two contacts with 30% TBP to deplete uranium content followed by four contacts with 0.2M CMPO+1.2M TBP in dodecane. The acidity of the SBHLW solutions was about 0.3M. In the case of actual SBHLW, the final raffinate contained about 0.4% -activity originally present in the HLW, whereas with synthetic SBHLW the -activity was reduced to the background level.144Ce is extracted almost quantitative in the CMPO phase,106Ru about 12% and137Cs is practically not extracted at all. The extraction chromatographic column studies with synthetic SBHLW (aftertwo TBP contacts) has shown that large volume of waste solutions could be passed through the column without break-through of actinide metal ions. Using 0.04M HNO3>99% Am(III) and rare earths could be eluted/stripped. Similarly >99% Pu(IV) and U(VI) could be eluted.stripped using 0.01M oxalic acid and 0.25M sodium carbonate, respectively. In the presence of 0.16M SO 4 2– (in the SBHLW) the complex ions AmSO 4 + , UO2SO4, PuSO 4 2+ and Pu(SO4)2 were formed in the aqueous phase but the species extracted into the organic phase (CMPO+TBP) were only the nitrato complexes Am(NO3)3·3CMPO, UO2(NO3)2·2CMPO and Pu(NO3)4·2CMPO. A scheme for the recovery of minor actinides from SBHLW solution with two contacts of 30% TBP followed by either solvent extraction or extraction chromatographic techniques has been proposed.

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Journal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry
Authors: J. Mathur, M. Murali, M. Balarama Krishna, R. Iyer, R. Chitnis, P. Wattal, A. Bauri, and A. Banerji

Abstract  

The partitioning and recovery of237Np from three types of simulated high level waste solutions originating from PUREX processing of spent nuclear fuels such as sulfate bearing high level waste (SB-HLW), HLW from a pressurised heavy water reactor (PHWR-HLW) and from a fast breeder reactor (FBR-HLW) have been carried out using a mixture of 0.2M CMPO and 1.2M TBP in dodecane. Quantitative extraction of neptunium was possible by either oxidizing it to the hexavalent state keeping K2Cr2O7 at 0.01M concentration or by reducing it to tetravalent state keeping Fe2+ at 0.02M concentration. Stripping of neptunium was carried out using different reagents, such as dilute nitric acid, oxalic acid and sodium carbonate. Almost quantitative recovery of neptunium has been achieved during these studies.

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