Preparation and Characterization of Uranium Oxides in Support of the K Basin Sludge Treatment Project

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Uraninite (UO2) and metaschoepite (UO3·2H2O) are the uranium phases most frequently observed in K Basin sludge. Uraninite arises from the oxidation of uranium metal by anoxic water and metaschoepite arises from oxidation of uraninite by atmospheric or radiolytic oxygen. Studies of the oxidation of uraninite by oxygen to form metaschoepite were performed at 21°C and 50°C. A uranium oxide oxidation state characterization method based on spectrophotometry of the solution formed by dissolving aqueous slurries in phosphoric acid was developed to follow the extent of reaction. This method may be applied to determine uranium oxide oxidation state distribution in K Basin ... continued below

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Sinkov, Sergey I.; Delegard, Calvin H. & Schmidt, Andrew J. July 8, 2008.

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Uraninite (UO2) and metaschoepite (UO3·2H2O) are the uranium phases most frequently observed in K Basin sludge. Uraninite arises from the oxidation of uranium metal by anoxic water and metaschoepite arises from oxidation of uraninite by atmospheric or radiolytic oxygen. Studies of the oxidation of uraninite by oxygen to form metaschoepite were performed at 21°C and 50°C. A uranium oxide oxidation state characterization method based on spectrophotometry of the solution formed by dissolving aqueous slurries in phosphoric acid was developed to follow the extent of reaction. This method may be applied to determine uranium oxide oxidation state distribution in K Basin sludge. The uraninite produced by anoxic corrosion of uranium metal has exceedingly fine particle size (6 nm diameter), forms agglomerates, and has the formula UO2.004±0.007; i.e., is practically stoichiometric UO2. The metaschoepite particles are flatter and wider when prepared at 21°C than the particles prepared at 50°C. These particles are much smaller than the metaschoepite observed in prolonged exposure of actual K Basin sludge to warm moist oxidizing conditions. The uraninite produced by anoxic uranium metal corrosion and the metaschoepite produced by reaction of uraninite aqueous slurries with oxygen may be used in engineering and process development testing. A rapid alternative method to determine uranium metal concentrations in sludge also was identified.

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  • Report No.: PNNL-17678
  • Grant Number: AC05-76RL01830
  • DOI: 10.2172/940228 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 940228
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc899317

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  • July 8, 2008

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  • Sept. 27, 2016, 1:39 a.m.

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  • Dec. 6, 2016, 4:25 p.m.

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Sinkov, Sergey I.; Delegard, Calvin H. & Schmidt, Andrew J. Preparation and Characterization of Uranium Oxides in Support of the K Basin Sludge Treatment Project, report, July 8, 2008; Richland, Washington. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc899317/: accessed September 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.