skip to main content

SciTech ConnectSciTech Connect

Title: Expanded Analysis of Hot Isostatic Pressed Iodine-Loaded Silver-Exchanged Mordenite

Reduced silver-exchanged mordenite (Ag0Z) is being evaluated as a potential material to control the release of radioactive iodine that is released during the reprocessing of used nuclear fuel into the plant off-gas streams. The purpose of this study was to determine if hot pressing could directly convert this iodine loaded sorbent into a waste form suitable for long-term disposition. The minimal pretreatment required for production of pressed pellets makes hot pressing a technically and economically desirable process. Initial scoping studies utilized hot uniaxial pressing (HUPing) to prepare samples of non-iodine-loaded reduced silver exchanged mordenite (Ag0Z). The resulting samples were very fragile due to the low pressure (~ 28 MPa) used. It was recommended that hot isostatic pressing (HIPing), performed at higher temperatures and pressures, be investigated. HIPing was carried out in two phases, with a third and final phase currently underway. Phase I evaluated the effects of pressure and temperature conditions on the manufacture of a pressed sample. The base material was an engineered form of silver zeolite. Six samples of Ag0Z and two samples of I-Ag0Z were pressed. It was found that HIPing produced a pressed pellet of high density. Analysis of each pressed pellet by scanning electron microscopy-energymore » dispersive spectrophotometry (SEM-EDS) and X-ray diffraction (XRD) demonstrated that under the conditions used for pressing, the majority of the material transforms into an amorphous structure. The only crystalline phase observed in the pressed Ag0Z material was SiO2. For the samples loaded with iodine (I-Ag0Z) iodine was present as AgI clusters at low temperatures, and transformed into AgIO4 at high temperatures. Surface mapping and EDS demonstrate segregation between silver iodide phases and silicon dioxide phases. Based on the results of the Phase I study, an expanded test matrix was developed to examine the effects of multiple source materials, compositional variations, and an expanded temperature range. Each sample was analyzed with the approach used in Phase I. In all cases, there is nothing in the SEM or XRD analyses that indicates creation of any AgI-containing silicon phase, with the samples being found to be largely amorphous. Phase III of this study has been initiated and is the final phase of scoping tests. It will expand upon the test matrix completed in Phase II and will examine the durability of the pressed pellets through product consistency testing (PCT) studies. Transformation of the component material into a well-characterized iodine-containing mineral phase would be desirable. This would limit the additional experimental testing and modeling required to determine the long-term stability of the pressed pellet, as much of that information has already been learned for several common iodine-containing minerals. However, this is not an absolute requirement, especially if pellets produced by hot isostatic pressing can be demonstrated through initial PCT studies to retain iodine well despite their amorphous composition.« less
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. ORNL
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
R&D Project: AF5805010; FCRD-SWF-2014-000278
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Nuclear Energy (NE), Fuel Cycle Technologies (NE-5)
Country of Publication:
United States
hot isostatic pressing