Uranyl Nitrate Flow Loop

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The objectives of the work discussed in this report were to: (1) develop a flow loop that would simulate the purified uranium-bearing aqueous stream exiting the solvent extraction process in a natural uranium conversion plant (NUCP); (2) develop a test plan that would simulate normal operation and disturbances that could be anticipated in an NUCP; (3) use the flow loop to test commercially available flowmeters for use as safeguards monitors; and (4) recommend a flowmeter for production-scale testing at an NUCP. There has been interest in safeguarding conversion plants because the intermediate products [uranium dioxide (UO{sub 2}), uranium tetrafluoride (UF{sub ... continued below

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Ladd-Lively, Jennifer L. October 1, 2008.

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Description

The objectives of the work discussed in this report were to: (1) develop a flow loop that would simulate the purified uranium-bearing aqueous stream exiting the solvent extraction process in a natural uranium conversion plant (NUCP); (2) develop a test plan that would simulate normal operation and disturbances that could be anticipated in an NUCP; (3) use the flow loop to test commercially available flowmeters for use as safeguards monitors; and (4) recommend a flowmeter for production-scale testing at an NUCP. There has been interest in safeguarding conversion plants because the intermediate products [uranium dioxide (UO{sub 2}), uranium tetrafluoride (UF{sub 4}), and uranium hexafluoride (UF{sub 6})] are all suitable uranium feedstocks for producing special nuclear materials. Furthermore, if safeguards are not applied virtually any nuclear weapons program can obtain these feedstocks without detection by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Historically, IAEA had not implemented safeguards until the purified UF{sub 6} product was declared as feedstock for enrichment plants. H. A. Elayat et al. provide a basic definition of a safeguards system: 'The function of a safeguards system on a chemical conversion plant is in general terms to verify that no useful nuclear material is being diverted to use in a nuclear weapons program'. The IAEA now considers all highly purified uranium compounds as candidates for safeguarding. DOE is currently interested in 'developing instruments, tools, strategies, and methods that could be of use to the IAEA in the application of safeguards' for materials found in the front end of the nuclear fuel cycle-prior to the production of the uranium hexafluoride or oxides that have been the traditional starting point for IAEA safeguards. Several national laboratories, including Oak Ridge, Los Alamos, Lawrence Livermore, and Brookhaven, have been involved in developing tools or techniques for safeguarding conversion plants. This study was sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) NA-241, Office of Dismantlement and Transparency.

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  • Report No.: ORNL/TM-2008/048
  • Grant Number: DE-AC05-00OR22725
  • DOI: 10.2172/939393 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 939393
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc897612

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  • October 1, 2008

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Sept. 27, 2016, 1:39 a.m.

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  • Oct. 31, 2016, 7:40 p.m.

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Ladd-Lively, Jennifer L. Uranyl Nitrate Flow Loop, report, October 1, 2008; [Tennessee]. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc897612/: accessed October 17, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.