Engineering Separations Unit Operations for Nuclear Processing: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Engineering Separations Unit Operations for Nuclear Processing

1st Edition

Edited by Reid Peterson

CRC Press

330 pages | 127 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9781138605824
pub: 2019-12-18
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Engineering Separations Unit Operations for Nuclear Processing provides insight into the fundamentals of separations in nuclear materials processing not covered in typical texts.

This book integrates fuel cycle and waste processing into a single, coherent approach, demonstrating that the principles from one field can and should be applied to the other. It provides historical perspectives on nuclear materials processing, current assessment and challenges, and how past challenges were overcome. It also provides understanding of the engineering principles associated with handling nuclear materials.

This book is aimed at researchers, graduate students, and professionals in the fields of chemical engineering, mechanical engineering, nuclear engineering, and materials engineering.

Table of Contents


Author Biographies


Chapter 1: Overview of Process Flowsheets

1.1 Process Flowsheets

1.1.1 Bismuth Phosphate Process

1.1.2 Acetate Precipitation

1.1.3 REDOX

1.1.4 PUREX Process

1.1.5 Waste Processing

Chapter 2: Uranium Fuel Dissolution

2.1 Introduction

2.2 Selection and Use of Nitric Acid and Impacts on Materials of Construction

2.3 Cladding Treatment

2.3.1 Chemical Dissolution of Cladding

2.3.2 Mechanical Treatments

2.4 Dissolver Design

2.4.1 Bismuth Phosphate Process Batch Fuel Dissolver

2.4.2 Late Hanford PUREX Plant Batch Fuel Dissolver

2.4.3 Basket Dissolvers for Fuel Dissolution in Chop/Leach Processing

2.4.4 Continuous Dissolvers

2.5 Modern Radioiodine Removal

2.6 Undissolved Residues

2.7 Uranium Metal and Uranium Dioxide Dissolution Reaction Mechanisms and Stoichiometries

2.8 Acid Consumption in the Uranium Metal and Uranium Dioxide Dissolutions

2.9 Heat Generation by Uranium Metal and Uranium Dioxide Dissolutions in Nitric Acid

2.10 Uranium Metal and Uranium Dioxide Dissolution Rates

2.10.1 Temperature Effects

2.10.2 Nitric Acid and Nitrate Concentration Effects

2.10.3 Agitation Effects

2.10.4 Catalysts or Additives Effects

2.10.5 Grain Size and Orientation Effects

2.10.6 Surface Roughness Effects

2.10.7 Irradiation Effects

2.11 Plutonium and Fission Product Concentration Variations within Uranium Metal Fuel Slugs and Uranium Dioxide Pellets and Their Release Rates from Slugs during Dissolution

2.12 MOX Dissolution

2.13 References

Chapter 3: Precipitation and Crystallization Processes in Reprocessing, Plutonium Separation, Purification, and Finishing, Chemical Recovery, and Waste Treatment


3.1 Introduction

3.1.1 Definitions

3.1.2 Discoveries of Plutonium and Neptunium and Introduction to Early Separations Processes

3.2 History and Technological Bases of Radiochemical Precipitation and Crystallization Processes

3.3 Principles of Carrier Precipitation

3.4 Coprecipitation for Plutonium Separation and Recovery in Reprocessing

3.4.1 The Bismuth Phosphate Process at Hanford

3.4.2 The Sodium Uranyl Acetate Process in the USSR

3.5 Processing of Uranium and Plutonium by Precipitation as Pure Compounds

3.5.1 General Considerations

3.5.2 Plutonium Peroxide Precipitation Processes

3.5.3 Plutonium Trifluoride Precipitation Processes

3.5.4 Plutonium(III) Oxalate Precipitation Processes

3.5.5 Plutonium(IV) Oxalate Precipitation Processes

3.5.6 Comparison of Major Plutonium Precipitation Conversion Processes

3.6 Decontamination of Plutonium Process Waste Solutions Using Precipitation

3.6.1 Scavenging of Fission and Activation Products from Reprocessing Wastes Using Coprecipitation

3.6.2 Scavenging of Plutonium from Acidic Solutions by Alkaline Coprecipitation

3.6.3 Scavenging of Plutonium from Alkaline Solutions by Homogeneous Coprecipitation

3.7 Waste Volume Reduction and Formation of Solids by Evaporation and Crystallization

3.8 Dissolution of Aluminum Solid Phases from Hanford and Savannah River Site Tank Wastes

3.9 Chromium Phase Dissolution from Hanford Site Tank Wastes

3.10 Recovery and Storage of Radiostrontium and Radiocesium Derived from Radioactive Wastes by the Waste Fractionization Process Using Precipitation and Crystallization

3.11 Recovery of Plutonium Process Waste Components Using Precipitation/Crystallization

3.12 Conclusions

3.13 References

Chapter 4: Solvent Extraction in the Nuclear Fuel Cycle

4.1 Introduction to Solvent Extraction

4.2 Processes: Basic Chemistry

4.2.1 Uranium and Plutonium Separations

4.2.2 Minor Actinide Recovery Processes

4.2.3 Other Applications of Solvent Extraction—Molecular Recognition Applications

4.3 Equipment

4.3.1 Columns

4.3.2 Mixer-Settlers

4.3.3 Centrifugal Contactors

4.4 Solvent Extraction Modeling

4.5 Processing Complications

4.5.1 Interfacial Crud and Stable Emulsions

4.5.2 Third Phase Formation/Phase Splitting and Red Oil

4.6 Conclusions

4.7 References

Chapter 5: Filtration


5.1 Introduction to Filtration

5.2 General Aspects of Filtration

5.3 Theory of Filtration

5.3.1 Dead-End Filtration

5.3.2 Crossflow Filtration

5.4 Filtration Performance in Nuclear Waste Applications

5.4.1 Operating Conditions

5.4.2 Suspension Properties

5.4.3 Flux Recovery Techniques and Performance

5.5 Examples of Filtration in Nuclear Waste Processing

5.5.1 Melton Valley Storage Tank Wastewater Triad Project

5.5.2 West Valley Liquid Waste Treatment System

5.5.3 Savannah River Site

5.5.4 Sellafield Enhanced Actinide Removal Plant

5.5.5 Hanford Site

5.6 Summary

5.7 References

Chapter 6: Ion Exchange


6.1 Introduction to Ion Exchange Processes

6.2 Ion Exchange Media Capacity

6.3 Column Performance

6.4 Elution Performance

6.5 Plutonium Separation

6.5.1 Cation exchange

6.5.2 Plutonium Anion Exchange

6.6 Cesium Removal

6.6.1 Duolite for PUREX Sludge Supernate Treatment at Hanford

6.6.2 West Valley Demonstration Project Summary

6.6.3 Cesium Removal at Hanford from Tank Waste Supernate

6.7 Technetium Removal

6.8 References

Chapter 7: Non-Aqueous Processing


7.1 Introduction

7.2 Pyroprocessing

7.3 Modern Pyroprocessing Methods

7.4 Potential Future Applications for Pyroprocessing

7.4.1 Commercial Fuel Reprocessing

7.4.2 Molten Salt Reactors

7.5 Summary

7.6 References

About the Editor

Dr. Reid Peterson joined PNNL in 2004. He is the Team Lead for the Radiochemical Science team in the Radiochemical Processes Laboratory at PNNL. This team focuses primarily on separations and characterization of radiochemical processes of interest to DOE Environmental Management, DOE Nuclear Energy and National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) clients.

In addition, Dr. Peterson serves as the Program manager for the Waste Treatment Project Support Program. This program hosts all PNNL projects supporting the Hanford Waste Treatment Plant, encompassing over 16 years of active research. Dr. Peterson also serves as a lead for the Nuclear Process Science Initiative.

Dr. Peterson has worked largely in the field of waste processing for treatment of high-level waste. He has an extensive background in managing large research programs and experience in taking projects from inception to pilot-scale proof of concept. Through his experiences at PNNL, the Hanford Tank Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant (WTP), and Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL), Dr. Peterson has developed working relationships with key staff across the National Lab complex, including Argonne National Laboratory, Idaho National Engineering Laboratory, Los Alamos National Laboratory, and SRNL, as well as the site contractors for waste processing at both the Savannah River Site and Hanford. Dr. Peterson leads research teams in the areas of separation processes for nuclear applications. His current focus areas include dissolution reaction, cesium removal technologies, and solid/liquid separation techniques.

Dr. Peterson has more than 120 technical reports and 32 peer review publications. He holds a bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering from Iowa State University and a doctorate in Chemical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SCIENCE / Chemistry / Industrial & Technical
SCIENCE / Energy
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Chemical & Biochemical
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Power Resources / Fossil Fuels