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Title: Hydroxylamine Nitrate Decomposition under Non-radiological Conditions

Hydroxylamine nitrate (HAN) is used to reduce Pu(IV) to Pu(III) in the separation of plutonium from uranium. HAN becomes unstable under certain conditions and has been known to explode, causing injury to humans including death. Hence, it is necessary to deactivate HAN once the reduction of plutonium is finished. This report reviews what is known about the chemistry of HAN and various methods to achieve a safe decomposition. However, there are areas where more information is needed to make a decision about the handling of HAN in reprocessing of nuclear fuel. Experiments have demonstrated a number of non-radiolytic ways to safely decompose HAN, including heating in HNO3, photolytic oxidation in the presence of H2O2, and the addition of a metal such as Fe(III) that will oxidize the HAN.
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  1. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
400409900; 401105000
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
hydroxylamine nitrate; decomposition chemistry