1962 Volume 35 Issue 2 Pages 214-218
The separation of uranium from fission products by using cellulose has been demonstrated. Uranyl nitrate hexahydrate containing fission products was dissolved in an organic solvent that had low solubility of water, and this solution was passed through the column of cellulose. Almost all the fission products were retained on the cellulose, while uranium passed almost unadsorbed. The most labile nuclides were found to be ruthenium and cesium. Free nitric acid must be eliminated to prevent the elution of ruthenium.
The distribution ratios of individual fission products and neptunium between cellulose and an uranyl nitrate solution in n-butyl acetate were determined, and it was found that the adsorption of fission products decreased with the increase in the uranium concentration of the organic solvent. Therefore, the concentration of uranium that passed through the column was limited to below 0.2 m.
It was also found that water was necessary. This indicated partition as one of the mechanisms of this separation.
In this method the mass transfer of uranium between two different phases is not performed, so the contamination of fission products is rather small. Moreover, uranium can be easily recovered and fission products are condensed on a small amount of cellulose.
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