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EXPANDED SCALE PROCESS DEVELOPMENT OF THE ELECTROLYTIC PRODUCTION OF THORIUM FROM ThCl$sub 4$ IN EXTERNALLY HEATED ELECTROLYTIC CELLS

Description: The commercial feasibility of the electrolytic process for Th production has been demonstrated. The cell produced 7 lb. of good quality metal per hour. A cathode cooling system was developed. The major construction materials, Ni and graphite, were satisfactory. The process yield was 86%. (T.R.H.)
Date: January 15, 1956
Creator: Abraham, L.; Merlub-Sobel, M.; Wyatt, J.L. & Wainer, E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

INVESTIGATION FOR THE PRODUCTION OF THORIUM METAL. Technical Progress Report--Fifth Quarter

Description: Processes for preparing a suitable ThCl/sub 4/ electrolyte free of H/sub 2/O and C/sub 2/ were investigated including chlorination with C -Cl/sub 2/, sulfur chlorides, NaCl, and preparation from anhydrous solvents. The method selected consisted of reacting ThOCO/sub 3/ with HCl, adding NH/sub 4/Cl, and heating in inert atmosphere to drive off NH/sub 4/Cl. (T.R.H.)
Date: December 17, 1953
Creator: Merlub-Sobel, M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

PRODUCTION OF ELECTROLYTIC THORIUM CELL FEED BY A WET CHEMICAL METHOD. Process Report

Description: In order to produce a substantially oxide-free chloride. a specialized technique, based on the chemical characteristics of the ammonium thorium chloride complexes, has been found optimum. The procedure involves the formation of a solution of thorium chloride and ammonium chloride, evaporation of the solution to form a hydrated ammonium thorium chloride complex, dehydration of the complex by low-temperature drying, and ignition of the complex, after inter-mixture with an alkali chloride, to remove ammonium chloride and to form a thorium alkali chloride mixture for electrolysis. (L.T.W.)
Date: March 18, 1955
Creator: Fisher, C.E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT IN THE FIELD OF THORIUM CHEMISTRY AND METALLURGY. VOLUME I. PREPARATION OF ELECTROLYTIC CELL FEED FOR PRODUCTION OF THORIUM METAL. Final Report

Description: A research and development program in the field of thorium chemistry and metallurgy was conducted. Most of this activity was directed toward the development of techniques for the production of metal by fused salt electrolytic approaches, little effort being proportioned to the preparation of an electrolyte for the process. An aqueous method for the preparation of an anhydrous cell feed was set up and operated for several months. Relatively high operating expense and difficulties with materials of construction prompted the development of a more direct approach for the production of electrolytic cell feed. The system established for cell feed preparation converts thoriumn nitrate to a basic carbonate via the reaction between the nitrate and sodium carbonate, this precipitation being quantitative. Following a suitable filtration and drying operation, the thorium oxycarbonate is converted directly to the chloride by reaction with carbon and chlorine, forming a cell feed containing between 40 and 45% thorium in a molten matrix of sodium and potassium chlorides. The preparation of cell feed by the descrihed process was carried out on a small- tonnage basis, in 1,000-pound batches. The entire process is capable of heing operated on a continuous or semi-continuous basis and presents a commercially feasible approach for the preparation of high quality anhydrous electrolytes suitable for conversion to A.E.C. grade thorium metal by eleetrolytic techniques. A brief description of small-scale research and development experiments leading to the established system also is included. (auth)
Date: June 30, 1956
Creator: Fisher, C.E. & Wyatt, J.L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Summary Technical Report for the Period July 1, 1955 to September 30, 1955

Description: Progress is reported on the following investigations: pilot-plant evaluation of U ore concentrates; low-acid extraction of U; scrub-column operation, corrosion of reactor materials in sparge tanks containing UNH; effect of UO/sub 2/F/sub 2/ content on UF/sub 4/ reduction; thermal densification of UF/ sub 4/,; operation of the moving bed reactor; reduction of UF/sub 4/ with Mg; development of a mold insulator; preparation of Th (C/sub 2/O/sub 4/)/sub 2/ and ThCI/sub 4/; production of Th metal; ore resistant t transform ation of U; effect of H/sub 2/ content of slug canning behavior; centrifugal casting of slugs; determination of Zr and Mo in U alloys; and analysis of U and Th ores for rare earths. (W.L.H.)
Date: October 17, 1955
Creator: Simmons, J. W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

THE USE OF TRI-n-OCTYLPHOSPHINE OXIDE IN THE SOLVENT EXTRACTION OF THORIUM FROM ACIDIC SOLUTIONS

Description: Thorium is readily extracted by a solution of tri-noctylphosphine oxide in cyclohexane from either acidic nitrate or chloride solutions. The maximum extraction coefficient in a nitrate medium is 380 as compared to 1300 for a chloride solution. In nitrate media the extraction coefficient is relativelv unaffected by changes in the anion concentration. In chloride media the coefficient varies directly with increasing chloride concentration, i.e., from about 0.4 in one molar chloride to the maximum in 7 to 10 molar. The acid concentration should be at least one molar. Thorium is not appreciably extracted from sulfate solutions. The extraction coefficient is of the order of 0.3. The addition of nitrate or chloride increases the coefficient sufficiently so that essentially 99% of the thorium can be extracted in a single equilibration. In perchlolate systems the extractlon is most efficient in one molar acid. The maximum (The above was unscabble material)
Date: November 20, 1958
Creator: Ross, W.J. & White, J.C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

QUARTERLY PROGRESS REPORT FOR THE PERIOD ENDING JUNE 30, 1954

Description: Chemistry of Feed Materials. Studies were made of the first step in the reduction of UO/sub 3/ to UO/sub 2/. The rates of reduction of pelleted- hydrated and pelleted-dehydrated UO/sub 3/ to U/sub 3/O/sub 8/ in steam were determined. The rates of reduction of pelleted U/sub 3/O/sub 8/ to UO/sub 2/ in 1-to-1 ammonia-steam were determined. Some preliminary measurements were made on the thermal conductivities of hydrated and dehydrated UO/sub 3/ wafers. Purification of Th(NO/sub 3/)/sub 4/ for spectrographic standards is described. Uranium was extracted from MgF/sub 2/ slag with an aqueous solution of sodium carbonate --bicarbonate using 0/sub 2/ at 30 psi as an oxidant. The conversion of thorium benzoate to ThCl/sub 4/ was carried out with HCl in ether. Dimethyl ether was prepared by the catalytic dehydration of methanol. The processing of UO/sub 3/ containing As contamination is described. Metallurgical Investigations. A process for stripping Af and Ni coatings from flat plates is described. Analytical Chemistry. The spectrographic determination of dysprosium and gadolinium in lanthanum oxide matrix--rare earth concentrate is described. (W.L.H.)
Date: July 1, 1954
Creator: Rodden, C.J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department