Volatilities of ruthenium, iodine, and technetium on calcining fission product nitrate wastes

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Various high-level nitrate wastes were subjected to formic acid denitration. Formic acid reacts with the nitrate anion to yield noncondensable, inert gases according to the following equation: 4 HCOOH + 2 HNO/sub 3/ ..-->.. N/sub 2/O + 4 CO/sub 2/ + 5 H/sub 2/O. These gases can be scrubbed free of /sup 106/Ru, /sup 131/I, and /sup 99/Tc radioactivities prior to elimination from the plant by passage through HEPA filters. The formation of deleterious NO/sub x/ is avoided. Moreover, formic acid reduces ruthenium to a lower valence state with a sharp reduction in RuO/sub 4/ volatility during subsequent calcination of ... continued below

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Pages: 28

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Rimshaw, S.J. & Case, F.N. January 1, 1980.

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Various high-level nitrate wastes were subjected to formic acid denitration. Formic acid reacts with the nitrate anion to yield noncondensable, inert gases according to the following equation: 4 HCOOH + 2 HNO/sub 3/ ..-->.. N/sub 2/O + 4 CO/sub 2/ + 5 H/sub 2/O. These gases can be scrubbed free of /sup 106/Ru, /sup 131/I, and /sup 99/Tc radioactivities prior to elimination from the plant by passage through HEPA filters. The formation of deleterious NO/sub x/ is avoided. Moreover, formic acid reduces ruthenium to a lower valence state with a sharp reduction in RuO/sub 4/ volatility during subsequent calcination of the pretreated waste. It is shown that a minimum of 3% of RuO/sub 4/ in an off-gas stream reacts with Davison silica gel (Grade 40) to give a fine RuO/sub 2/ aerosol having a particle size of 0.5 ..mu... This RuO/sub 2/ aerosol passes through water or weak acid scrub solutions but is trapped by a caustic scrub solution. Iodine volatilizes almost completely on calcining an acidic waste, and the iodine volatility increases with increasing calcination temperature. On calcining an alkaline sodium nitrate waste the iodine volatility is about an order of magnitude lower, with a relatively low iodine volatility of 0.39% at a calcination temperature of 250/sup 0/C and a moderate volatility of 9.5% at 600/sup 0/C. Volatilities of /sup 99/Tc were generally <1% on calcining acidic or basic wastes at temperatures of 250 to 600/sup 0/C. Data are presented to indicate that /sup 99/Tc concentrates in the alkaline sodium nitrate supernatant waste, with approx. 10 mg /sup 99/Tc being associated with each curie of /sup 137/Cs present in the waste. It is shown that lutidine (2,4 dimethyl-pyridine) extracts Tc(VII) quantitatively from alkaline supernatant wastes. The distribution coefficient (K/sub D/) for Tc(VII) going into the organic phase in the above system is 102 for a simulated West Valley waste and 191 for a simulated Savannah River Plant (SRP) waste.

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Pages: 28

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NTIS, PC A03/MF A01.

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  • 16. DOE nuclear air cleaning conference, San Diego, CA, USA, 20 Oct 1980

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  • Report No.: CONF-801038-4
  • Grant Number: W-7405-ENG-26
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 5086905
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc1059640

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Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

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  • January 1, 1980

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  • Jan. 22, 2018, 7:23 a.m.

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  • Feb. 1, 2018, 1:38 p.m.

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Rimshaw, S.J. & Case, F.N. Volatilities of ruthenium, iodine, and technetium on calcining fission product nitrate wastes, article, January 1, 1980; Tennessee. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc1059640/: accessed October 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.