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Title: Plutonium recovery from spent reactor fuel by uranium displacement

Abstract

A process is described for separating uranium values and transuranic values from fission products containing rare earth values when the values are contained together in a molten chloride salt electrolyte. A molten chloride salt electrolyte with a first ratio of plutonium chloride to uranium chloride is contacted with both a solid cathode and an anode having values of uranium and fission products including plutonium. A voltage is applied across the anode and cathode electrolytically to transfer uranium and plutonium from the anode to the electrolyte while uranium values in the electrolyte electrolytically deposit as uranium metal on the solid cathode in an amount equal to the uranium and plutonium transferred from the anode causing the electrolyte to have a second ratio of plutonium chloride to uranium chloride. Then the solid cathode with the uranium metal deposited thereon is removed and molten cadmium having uranium dissolved therein is brought into contact with the electrolyte resulting in chemical transfer of plutonium values from the electrolyte to the molten cadmium and transfer of uranium values from the molten cadmium to the electrolyte until the first ratio of plutonium chloride to uranium chloride is reestablished.

Inventors:
Issue Date:
OSTI Identifier:
7275815
Patent Number(s):
5096545 A
Application Number:
PPN: US 7-703641
Assignee:
Dept. of Energy, Washington, DC (United States) PTO; EDB-94-079647
DOE Contract Number:  
W-31109-ENG-38
Resource Type:
Patent
Resource Relation:
Patent File Date: 21 May 1991
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
11 NUCLEAR FUEL CYCLE AND FUEL MATERIALS; PLUTONIUM; MATERIALS RECOVERY; SPENT FUELS; REPROCESSING; URANIUM; ELECTROPLATING; CONCENTRATION RATIO; MOLTEN SALTS; SEPARATION PROCESSES; ACTINIDES; DEPOSITION; ELECTRODEPOSITION; ELECTROLYSIS; ELEMENTS; ENERGY SOURCES; FUELS; LYSIS; MANAGEMENT; MATERIALS; METALS; NUCLEAR FUELS; PLATING; PROCESSING; REACTOR MATERIALS; SALTS; SURFACE COATING; TRANSURANIUM ELEMENTS; WASTE MANAGEMENT; WASTE PROCESSING; 050800* - Nuclear Fuels- Spent Fuels Reprocessing

Citation Formats

Ackerman, J.P. Plutonium recovery from spent reactor fuel by uranium displacement. United States: N. p., 1992. Web.
Ackerman, J.P. Plutonium recovery from spent reactor fuel by uranium displacement. United States.
Ackerman, J.P. Tue . "Plutonium recovery from spent reactor fuel by uranium displacement". United States.
@article{osti_7275815,
title = {Plutonium recovery from spent reactor fuel by uranium displacement},
author = {Ackerman, J.P.},
abstractNote = {A process is described for separating uranium values and transuranic values from fission products containing rare earth values when the values are contained together in a molten chloride salt electrolyte. A molten chloride salt electrolyte with a first ratio of plutonium chloride to uranium chloride is contacted with both a solid cathode and an anode having values of uranium and fission products including plutonium. A voltage is applied across the anode and cathode electrolytically to transfer uranium and plutonium from the anode to the electrolyte while uranium values in the electrolyte electrolytically deposit as uranium metal on the solid cathode in an amount equal to the uranium and plutonium transferred from the anode causing the electrolyte to have a second ratio of plutonium chloride to uranium chloride. Then the solid cathode with the uranium metal deposited thereon is removed and molten cadmium having uranium dissolved therein is brought into contact with the electrolyte resulting in chemical transfer of plutonium values from the electrolyte to the molten cadmium and transfer of uranium values from the molten cadmium to the electrolyte until the first ratio of plutonium chloride to uranium chloride is reestablished.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {1992},
month = {3}
}