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Process for Removing Cadmium From Scrap Metal

Description: A process for the recovery of a metal, in particular, cadmium contained in scrap, in a stable form. The process comprises the steps of mixing the cadmium-containing scrap with an ammonium carbonate solution, preferably at least a stoichiometric amount of ammonium carbonate, and/or free ammonia, and an oxidizing agent to form a first mixture so that the cadmium will react with the ammonium carbonate to form a water-soluble ammine complex; evaporating the first mixture so that ammine complex dissociates from the first mixture leaving carbonate ions to react with the cadmium and form a second mixture that includes cadmium carbonate; optionally adding water to the second mixture to form a third mixture; adjusting the pH of the third mixture to the acid range whereby the cadmium carbonate will dissolve; and adding at least a stoichiometric amount of sulfide, preferably in the form of hydrogen sulfide or an aqueous ammonium sulfide solution, to the third mixture to precipitate cadmium sulfide. This mixture of sulfide is then preferably digested by heating to facilitate precipitation of large particles of cadmium sulfide. The scrap may be divided by shredding or breaking up to exposure additional surface area. Finally, the precipitated cadmium sulfide can be mixed with glass formers and vitrified for permanent disposal.
Date: January 1, 1994
Creator: Kronberg, James W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Biocarrier Composition for and Method of Degrading Pollutants

Description: The present invention relates to biocarrier compositions that attract and bond pollutant-degrading antigens that will degrade the pollutants. Biocarriers are known generally as a variety of inert or semi-inert compounds or structures having the ability to sequester (attract), hold and biomagnify (enhance) specific microorganisms within their structure. Glass or polystyrene beads are the most well known biocarriers. The biocarrier, which is preferably in the form of glass microspheres, is coated with an antibody or group of antibodies that attract and react specifically with certain pollutant-degrading antigens. The antibody, once bonded to the biocarrier, is used by the composition to attract and bond those pollutant-degrading antigens. Each antibody is specific for an antigen that is specific for a given pollutant. The resulting composition is subsequently exposed to an environment contaminated with pollutants for degradation. In the preferred use, the degrading composition is formed and then injected directly into or near a plume or source of contamination.
Date: January 1, 1994
Creator: Fliermans, Carl B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Vitrification of organics-containing wastes

Description: A process for stabilizing organics-containing waste materials and recovery metals therefrom, and a waste glass product made according to the process are described. Vitrification of wastes such as organic ion exchange resins, electronic components and the like can be accomplished by mixing at least one transition metal oxide with the wastes, and, if needed, glass formers to compensate for a shortage of silicates or other glass formers in the wastes. The transition metal oxide increases the rate of oxidation of organic materials in the wastes to improve the composition of the glass-forming mixture: at low temperatures, the oxide catalyzes oxidation of a portion of the organics in the waste; at higher temperatures, the oxide dissolves and the resulting oxygen ions oxidize more of the organics; and at vitrification temperatures, the metal ions conduct oxygen into the melt to oxidize the remaining organics. In addition, the transition metal oxide buffers the redox potential of the glass melt so that metals such as Au, Pt, Ag, and Cu separate form the melt in the metallic state and can be recovered. After the metals are recovered, the remainder of the melt is allowed to cool and may subsequently be disposed of. The product has good leaching resistance and can be disposed of in an ordinary landfill, or, alternatively, used as a filler in materials such as concrete, asphalt, brick and tile.
Date: January 1, 1995
Creator: Bickford, Dennis F.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Alkaline solution absorption of carbon dioxide method and apparatus

Description: Disclosed is a method for measuring the concentration of hydroxides (or pH) in alkaline solutions, using the tendency of hydroxides to adsorb CO{sub 2}. The method comprises passing CO{sub 2} over the surface of an alkaline solution in a remote tank before and after measurements of the CO{sub 2} concentration. Comparison of the measurements yields the adsorption fraction from which the hydroxide concentration can be calculated using a correlation of hydroxide or pH to adsorption fraction. A schematic is given of a process system according to a preferred embodiment of the invention. 2 figs.
Date: January 1, 1991
Creator: Hobbs, Davd T.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Method and apparatus for determining material structural integrity

Description: Disclosed are a nondestructive method and apparatus for determining the structural integrity of materials by combining laser vibrometry with damping analysis to determine the damping loss factor. The method comprises the steps of vibrating the area being tested over a known frequency range and measuring vibrational force and velocity vs time over the known frequency range. Vibrational velocity is preferably measured by a laser vibrometer. Measurement of the vibrational force depends on the vibration method: if an electromagnetic coil is used to vibrate a magnet secured to the area being tested, then the vibrational force is determined by the coil current. If a reciprocating transducer is used, the vibrational force is determined by a force gauge in the transducer. Using vibrational analysis, a plot of the drive point mobility of the material over the preselected frequency range is generated from the vibrational force and velocity data. Damping loss factor is derived from a plot of the drive point mobility over the preselected frequency range using the resonance dwell method and compared with a reference damping loss factor for structural integrity evaluation.
Date: January 1, 1994
Creator: Pechersky, M. J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Depleted uranium as a backfill for nuclear fuel waste package

Description: A method is described for packaging spent nuclear fuel for long-term disposal in a geological repository. At least one spent nuclear fuel assembly is first placed in an unsealed waste package and a depleted uranium fill material is added to the waste package. The depleted uranium fill material comprises flowable particles having a size sufficient to substantially fill any voids in and around the assembly and contains isotonically-depleted uranium in the +4 valence state in an amount sufficient to inhibit dissolution of the spent nuclear fuel from the assembly into a surrounding medium and to lessen the potential for nuclear criticality inside the repository in the event of failure of the waste package. Last, the waste package is sealed, thereby substantially reducing the release of radionuclides into the surrounding medium, while simultaneously providing radiation shielding and increased structural integrity of the waste package.
Date: December 1, 1997
Creator: Forsberg, Charles W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

All-vapor processing of P-type tellurium-containing II-VI semiconductor and ohmic contacts thereof

Description: An all dry method for producing solar cells is provided comprising first heat-annealing a II-VI semiconductor; enhancing the conductivity and grain size of the annealed layer; modifying the surface and depositing a tellurium layer onto the enhanced layer; and then depositing copper onto the tellurium layer so as to produce a copper tellurium compound on the layer.
Date: March 1, 2000
Creator: McCandless, Brian E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

An arc fault detection system

Description: An arc fault detection system for use on ungrounded or high-resistance-grounded power distribution systems is provided which can be retrofitted outside electrical switchboard circuits having limited space constraints. The system includes a differential current relay that senses a current differential between current flowing from secondary windings located in a current transformer coupled to a power supply side of a switchboard, and a total current induced in secondary windings coupled to a load side of the switchboard. When such a current differential is experienced, a current travels through a operating coil of the differential current relay, which in turn, opens an upstream circuit breaker located between the switchboard and a power supply to remove the supply of power to the switchboard.
Date: December 1, 1997
Creator: Jha, Kamal N.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

In-situ stabilization of radioactive zirconium swarf

Description: The method for treating ignitable cutting swarf in accordance with the present invention involves collecting cutting swarf in a casting mold underwater and injecting a binder mixture comprising vinyl ester styrene into the vessel to fill void volume; and form a mixture comprising swarf and vinyl ester styrene; and curing the mixture. The method is especially useful for stabilizing the ignitable characteristics of radioactive zirconium cutting swarf, and can be used to solidify zirconium swarf, or other ignitable finely divided material, underwater. The process could also be performed out of water with other particulate wastes.
Date: December 1, 1997
Creator: Hess, Clay C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Fiber optic signal amplifier using thermoelectric power generation

Description: A remote fiber optic signal amplifier for use as a repeater/amplifier, such as in transoceanic communication, powered by a Pu{sub 238} or Sr{sub 90} thermoelectric generator. The amplifier comprises a unit with connections on the receiving and sending sides of the communications system, and an erbium-doped fiber amplifier connecting each sending fiber to each receiving fiber. The thermoelectric generator, preferably a Pu{sub 238} or Sr{sub 90} thermoelectric generator delivers power to the amplifiers through a regulator. The heat exchange surfaces of the thermoelectric generator are made of material resistant to corrosion and biological growth and are directly exposed to the outside, such as the ocean water in transoceanic communications.
Date: January 1, 1993
Creator: Hart, M.M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Optical temperature indicator using thermochromic semiconductors

Description: A reversible optical temperature indicator utilizes thermochromic semiconductors which vary in color in response to various temperature levels. The thermochromic material is enclosed in an enamel which provides protection and prevents breakdown at higher temperatures. Cadmium sulfide is the preferred semiconductor material. The indicator may be utilized as a sign or in a striped arrangement to clearly provide a warning to a user. The various color responses provide multiple levels of alarm.
Date: January 1, 1995
Creator: Kronberg, James W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Polishing compound for plastic surfaces

Description: This invention is comprised of a polishing compound for plastic materials. The compound includes approximately by approximately by weight 25 to 80 parts at least one petroleum distillate lubricant, 1 to 12 parts mineral spirits, 50 to 155 parts abrasive paste, and 15 to 60 parts water. Preferably, the compound includes approximately 37 to 42 parts at least one petroleum distillate lubricant, up to 8 parts mineral spirits, 95 to 110 parts abrasive paste, and 50 to 55 parts water. The proportions of the ingredients are varied in accordance with the particular application. The compound is used on PLEXIGLAS{trademark}, LEXAN{trademark}, LUCITE{trademark}, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), and similar plastic materials whenever a smooth, clear polished surface is desired.
Date: January 1, 1991
Creator: Stowell, M. S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

A process for off-gas particulate removal

Description: This paper describes an off-gas system for the removal of radioactive particulates from a melter for the vitrification of radioactive wastes to form glass waste forms. A diagram is provided.
Date: April 1, 1998
Creator: Carl, D.E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Recovery of fissile materials from nuclear wastes

Description: A process is described for recovering fissile materials such as uranium, and plutonium, and rare earth elements, from complex waste feed material, and converting the remaining wastes into a waste glass suitable for storage or disposal. The waste feed is mixed with a dissolution glass formed of lead oxide and boron oxide resulting in oxidation, dehalogenation, and dissolution of metal oxides. Carbon is added to remove lead oxide, and a boron oxide fusion melt is produced. The fusion melt is essentially devoid of organic materials and halogens, and is easily and rapidly dissolved in nitric acid. After dissolution, uranium, plutonium, and rare earth elements are separated from the acid and recovered by processes such as PUREX or ion exchange. The remaining acid waste stream is vitrified to produce a waste glass suitable for storage or disposal. Potential waste feed materials include plutonium scrap and residue, miscellaneous spent nuclear fuel, and uranium fissile wastes. The initial feed materials may contain mixtures of metals, ceramics, amorphous solids, halides, organic material and other carbon-containing material.
Date: December 1, 1997
Creator: Forsberg, Charles W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Closed-field capacitive liquid level sensor

Description: A liquid level sensor based on a closed field circuit comprises a ring oscillator using a symmetrical array of plate units that creates a displacement current. The displacement current varies as a function of the proximity of a liquid to the plate units. The ring oscillator circuit produces an output signal with a frequency inversely proportional to the presence of a liquid. A continuous liquid level sensing device and a two point sensing device are both proposed sensing arrangements. A second set of plates may be located inside of the probe housing relative to the sensing plate units. The second set of plates prevent any interference between the sensing plate units.
Date: January 1, 1995
Creator: Kronberg, J. W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Decontamination of matrices containing actinide oxides

Description: There is provided a method for removing actinides and actinide oxides, particularly fired actinides, from soil and other contaminated matrices, comprising: (a) contacting a contaminated material with a solution of at least one inhibited fluoride and an acid to form a mixture; (b) heating the mixture of contaminated material and solution to a temperature in the range from about 30 C to about 90 C while stirring; (c) separating the solution from any undissolved matrix material in the mixture; (d) washing the undissolved matrix material to remove any residual materials; and (e) drying and returning the treated matrix material to the environment.
Date: December 1, 1997
Creator: Villarreal, Robert
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Electronuclear ion fusion in an ion cyclotron resonance reactor

Description: A method and apparatus for generating nuclear fusion by ion cyclotron resonance in an ion trap reactor. The reactor includes a cylindrical housing having an axial axis, an internal surface, and first and second ends. First and second end plates that are charged are respectively located at the first and second ends of the cylindrical housing. A gas layer is adsorbed on the internal surface of the cylindrical housing. Ions are desorbed from the gas layer, forming a plasma layer adjacent to the cylindrical housing that includes first ions that have a same charge sign as the first and second end plates. A uniform magnetic field is oriented along the axial axis of the cylindrical housing. Second ions, that are unlike the first ions, but have the same charge sign, are injected into the cylindrical housing along the axial axis of the cylindrical housing. A radio frequency field resonantly accelerates the injected second ions at the cyclotron resonance frequency of the second ions. The second ions circulate in increasing helical orbits and react with the first ions, at the optimum energy for nuclear fusion. The amplitude of the radio frequency field is adjusted to accelerate the second ions at a rate equal to the rate of tangential energy loss of the second ions by nuclear scattering in the first ions, causing the ions to continually interact until fusion occurs.
Date: December 1, 1996
Creator: Cowgill, Donald F.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Polishing compound for plastic surfaces

Description: A polishing compound for plastic surfaces is disclosed. The compound contains by weight approximately 4 to 17 parts at least one petroleum distillate lubricant, 1 to 6 parts mineral spirits, 2.5 to 15 parts abrasive particles, and 2.5 to 10 parts water. The abrasive is tripoli or a similar material that contains colloidal silica. Preferably, most of the abrasive particles are less than approximately 10 microns, more preferably less than approximately 5 microns in size. The compound is used on PLEXIGLAS{sup TM}, LEXAN{sup TM}, LUCITE{sup TM}, polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and similar plastic materials whenever a smooth, clear polished surface is desired.
Date: January 1, 1993
Creator: Stowell, M.S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Process for making silver metal filaments

Description: This invention relates to a process for making filaments of metal compounds and more particularly to a process for making silver metal filaments. The United States Government has rights to this invention pursuant to Contract No. DE-AC05-8421400 with Lockheed Martin Energy Systems, Inc. awarded by the US Department of Energy.
Date: April 1, 1998
Creator: Bamberger, C.E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Process for treating alkaline wastes for vitrification

Description: According to its major aspects and broadly stated, the present invention is a process for treating alkaline waste materials, including high level radioactive wastes, for vitrification. The process involves adjusting the pH of the wastes with nitric acid, adding formic acid (or a process stream containing formic acid) to reduce mercury compounds to elemental mercury and MnO{sub 2} to the Mn(II) ion, and mixing with class formers to produce a melter feed. The process minimizes production of hydrogen due to noble metal-catalyzed formic acid decomposition during, treatment, while producing a redox-balanced feed for effective melter operation and a quality glass product. An important feature of the present invention is the use of different acidifying and reducing, agents to treat the wastes. The nitric acid acidifies the wastes to improve yield stress and supplies acid for various reactions; then the formic acid reduces mercury compounds to elemental mercury and MnO{sub 2}) to the Mn(II) ion. When the pH of the waste is lower, reduction of mercury compounds and MnO{sub 2}) is faster and less formic acid is needed, and the production of hydrogen caused by catalytically-active noble metals is decreased.
Date: January 1, 1994
Creator: Hsu, Chia-lin W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

A filtered cathodic arc deposition apparatus and method

Description: A filtered cathodic arc deposition method and apparatus are described for the production of highly dense, wear resistant coatings which are free from macro particles. The filtered cathodic arc deposition apparatus includes a cross shaped vacuum chamber which houses a cathode target having an evaporable surface comprised of the coating material, means for generating a stream of plasma, means for generating a transverse magnetic field, and a macro particle deflector. The transverse magnetic field bends the generated stream of plasma in the direction of a substrate. Macro particles are effectively filtered from the stream of plasma by traveling, unaffected by the transverse magnetic field, along the initial path of the plasma stream to a macro particle deflector. The macro particle deflector has a preformed surface which deflects macro particles away from the substrate.
Date: December 1, 1997
Creator: Krauss, Alan R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Nuclear fuel elements made from nanophase materials

Description: A nuclear reactor core fuel element is composed of nanophase high temperature materials. An array of the fuel elements in rod form are joined in an open geometry fuel cell that preferably also uses such nanophase materials for the cell structures. The particular high temperature nanophase fuel element material must have the appropriate mechanical characteristics to avoid strain-related failure even at high temperatures, in the order of about 3,000 F. Preferably, the reactor type is a pressurized or boiling water reactor and the nanophase material is a high temperature ceramic or ceramic composite. Nanophase metals, or nanophase metals with nanophase ceramics in a composite mixture, also have desirable characteristics, although their temperature capability is not as great as with all ceramic nanophase material. Combinations of conventional or nanophase metals and conventional or nanophase ceramics can be employed as long as there is at least one nanophase material in the composite. The nuclear reactor so constructed has a number of high strength fuel particles, a nanophase structural material for supporting a fuel rod at high temperature, a configuration to allow passive cooling in the event of a primary cooling system failure, an ability to retain a coolable geometry even at high temperatures, an ability to resist generation of hydrogen gas, and a configuration having good nuclear, corrosion and mechanical characteristics.
Date: December 1, 1997
Creator: Heubeck, Norman B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Optical temperature sensor using thermochromic semiconductors

Description: Optical thermometry is a growing technological field which exploits the ability of certain materials to change their optical properties with temperature. A subclass of such materials are those which change their color as a reversible and reproducible function of temperature. These materials are thermochromic. This invention is a composition to measure temperature utilizing thermochromic semiconductors.
Date: January 1, 1994
Creator: Kronberg, J.W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Performance evaluation soil samples utilizing encapsulation technology

Description: Performance evaluation soil samples and method of their preparation are described using encapsulation technology to encapsulate analytes which are introduced into a soil matrix for analysis and evaluation by analytical laboratories. Target analytes are mixed in an appropriate solvent at predetermined concentrations. The mixture is emulsified in a solution of polymeric film forming material. The emulsified solution is polymerized to form microcapsules. The microcapsules are recovered, quantitated and introduced into a soil matrix in a predetermined ratio to form soil samples with the desired analyte concentration.
Date: December 1, 1997
Creator: Dahlgran, James R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department