Dynamic leaching studies of 48 MWd/kgU UO2 commercial spent nuclear fuel under oxic conditions
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The leaching of a high-burn-up spent nuclear fuel (48 MWd/KgU) has been studied in a carbonate-containing solution and under oxic conditions using a Continuously Stirred Tank Flow-Through Reactor (CSTR). Two samples of the fuel, one prepared from the centre of the pellet (labelled CORE) and another one from the fuel pellet periphery, enriched with the so-called High Burn-Up Structure (HBS, labelled OUT) have been used. For uranium and actinides, the results showed that U, Np, Am and Cm gave very similar normalized dissolution rates, while Pu showed slower dissolution rates for both samples. In addition, dissolution rates were consistently two to four times lower for OUT sample compared to CORE sample. Considering the fission products release the main results are that Y, Tc, La and Nd dissolved very similar to uranium; while Cs, Sr, Mo and Rb have up to 10 times higher dissolution rates. Rh, Ru and Zr seemed to have lower dissolution rates than uranium. The lowest dissolution rates were found for OUT sample. Three different contributions were detected on uranium release, modelled and attributed to oxidation layer, fines and matrix release.
CitationSerrano, D. [et al.]. Dynamic leaching studies of 48 MWd/kgU UO2 commercial spent nuclear fuel under oxic conditions. "Journal of nuclear materials", Març 2013, vol. 434, núm. 1-3, p. 451-460.