Etching of UO{sub 2} in NF{sub 3} RF Plasma Glow Discharge

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A series of room temperature, low pressure (10.8 to 40 Pa), low power (25 to 210 W) RF plasma glow discharge experiments with UO{sub 2} were conducted to demonstrate that plasma treatment is a viable method for decontaminating UO{sub 2} from stainless steel substrates. Experiments were conducted using NF{sub 3} gas to decontaminate depleted uranium dioxide from stainless-steel substrates. Depleted UO{sub 2} samples each containing 129.4 Bq were prepared from 100 microliter solutions of uranyl nitrate hexahydrate solution. The amorphous UO{sub 2} in the samples had a relatively low density of 4.8 gm/cm{sub 3}. Counting of the depleted UO{sub 2} ... continued below

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Medium: P; Size: 197 pages

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Veilleux, John M. August 1, 1999.

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A series of room temperature, low pressure (10.8 to 40 Pa), low power (25 to 210 W) RF plasma glow discharge experiments with UO{sub 2} were conducted to demonstrate that plasma treatment is a viable method for decontaminating UO{sub 2} from stainless steel substrates. Experiments were conducted using NF{sub 3} gas to decontaminate depleted uranium dioxide from stainless-steel substrates. Depleted UO{sub 2} samples each containing 129.4 Bq were prepared from 100 microliter solutions of uranyl nitrate hexahydrate solution. The amorphous UO{sub 2} in the samples had a relatively low density of 4.8 gm/cm{sub 3}. Counting of the depleted UO{sub 2} on the substrate following plasma immersion was performed using liquid scintillation counting with alpha/beta discrimination due to the presence of confounding beta emitting daughter products, {sup 234}Th and {sup 234}Pa. The alpha emission peak from each sample was integrated using a gaussian and first order polynomial fit to improve quantification. The uncertainties in the experimental measurement of the etched material were estimated at about {+-} 2%. Results demonstrated that UO{sub 2} can be completely removed from stainless-steel substrates after several minutes processing at under 200 W. At 180 W and 32.7 Pa gas pressure, over 99% of all UO{sub 2} in the samples was removed in just 17 minutes. The initial etch rate in the experiments ranged from 0.2 to 7.4 {micro}m/min. Etching increased with the plasma absorbed power and feed gas pressure in the range of 10.8 to 40 Pa. A different pressure effect on UO{sub 2} etching was also noted below 50 W in which etching increased up to a maximum pressure, {approximately}23 Pa, then decreased with further increases in pressure.

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Medium: P; Size: 197 pages

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INIS; OSTI as DE00010597

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  • Other Information: TH: Thesis (Ph.D.); Submitted to Univ. of New Mexico, Dept. of Philosophy Engineering, Albuquerque, NM (US)

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  • Report No.: LA-13631-T
  • Grant Number: W-7405-ENG-36
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 10597
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc625378

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

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

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  • August 1, 1999

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  • June 16, 2015, 7:43 a.m.

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  • March 21, 2016, 3:06 p.m.

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Veilleux, John M. Etching of UO{sub 2} in NF{sub 3} RF Plasma Glow Discharge, thesis or dissertation, August 1, 1999; New Mexico. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc625378/: accessed November 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.