The effect of physicochemical parameters on the separation recovery of plutonium and uranium from aqueous solutions by cation exchange
SourceJournal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry
Google Scholar check
MetadataShow full item record
The effect of physicochemical parameters such as pH, salinity (e.g. [NaCl]) and competitive cation (e.g. Ca 2+ and Fe 3+) concentration on the separation recovery of plutonium and uranium from aqueous solutions by cation exchange has been investigated. The investigation was performed to evaluate the applicability of cation exchange as separation and pre-concentration method prior to the radiometric analysis of uranium and plutonium isotopes in natural water samples. Application of the method to test solutions of constant radionuclide concentration and variable composition (0.1, 0.5 and 1 M NaCl0.1 and 0.5 M Ca(NO 3) 20.1 and 1 mM FeCl 310) has generally shown that: (1) the optimum pH is 4.5 for uranium and plutonium, (2) increasing salinity results in slightly lower for uranium and significantly higher chemical recovery plutonium and (3) the presence of Ca(II) cations doesn't significantly affect the chemical recovery of both radionuclides. Contrary, the presence of Fe(III) cations ([Fe(III)] > 0.1 mM) results in significantly lower chemical recovery for both radionuclides (<50%). The later is attributed to the formation of Fe(III) colloids, which present increased chemical affinity for uranium and plutonium and hence compete with the radionuclide binding by the resin. Nevertheless, the results indicate that the method could be successfully applied to a wide range of natural waters. © 2010 Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary.