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IMMOBILIZATION OF TRITIATED WASTE WATERS GENERATED DURING REPROCESSING BY SOLIDIFICATION AS ZIRCONIUM HYDRIDE.

Objective

AT PRESENT TIME IT IS PLANNED TO MANAGE THE TRITIATED WASTE WATERS WHICH WILL BE GENERATED AT THE WACKERSDORF REPROCESSING PLANT BY SIMPLE INJECTION INTO DEEP GEOLOGICAL FORMATIONS. AN ALTERNATIVE MANAGEMENT ROUTE IS THE IMMOBILIZATION OF TRITIATED WASTE WATERS IN A CEMENTITOUS MATRIX FOLLOWED BY DISPOSAL IN DEEP GEOLOGICAL FORMATIONS. HOWEVER STILL ANOTHER FIXATION OPTION MAY BE WORTHWHILE FURTHER EXPLORATION. ZIRCONIUM SPONGE WHICH TRAPS GASEOUS TRITIUM AS ZIRCONIUM HYDRIDE APPEARS TO BE LIKELY THE MOST PROMISING ONE, AS SHOWN IN PREVIOUS INVESTIGATIONS CARRIED OUT WORLDWIDE AND ALSO AT KFA-JUELICH.

THESE ARE THE GOALS OF THE PROJECT :
- IDENTIFICATION OF THE TRITIATED WASTE WATER WHICH ARE EXPECTED TO ARISE FROM THE WACKERSDORF REPROCESSING PLANT IN ORDER TO DEFINE A REPRESENTATIVE WASTE FOR THE SUBSEQUENT EXPERIMENTAL TESTS.
- INVESTIGATION OF THE POSSIBLE ELECTRODES POISONING, USING SUITABLE ELECTROLYSERS. PARTICULARLY THE NATURE OF THE INTERFERING SPECIES INFLUENCING THE LIFETIME AND PERFORMANCE SHALL BE INVESTIGATED AS WELL AS POSSIBLE CONTAMINATION OF THE GENERAYED HYDROGEN.
- CHARACTERISATION OF ZIRCONIUM HYDRIDE TO DEMONSTRATE ITS SUITABILITY.
- ENGINEERING ASPECTS.
- SAFETY ASPECTS.
A new concept for zirconium hydride and its final disposal have been proposed, due to existing methodology proving unsuccessful. Using the new concept, accident potential is low, since fairly low levels of tritium and protium are handled per charge.
2.3.1. THE EXPERIMENTS CONCERNING THE PERFORMANCE AND LIFETIME USING AN ELECTROLYSER OPERATING WITH A SOLID POLYMER ELECTROLYTE (SPE) WERE CONTINUED AND FINISHED.
2.3.2.2. COMPARATIVE STUDIES WERE CARRIED OUT WITH A TELEDYNE HYDROGEN GENERATOR MODEL HG 501 OPERATING WITH 35% KOH AS THE ELECTROLYTE SOLUTION.
2.4.1. THE EXPERIMENTAL EQUIPMENT OF THE TRITIUM LABORATORY FOR HANDLING UP TO 185 TBQ (5000 CI) OF TRITIUM HAS BEEN COMPLETED.
2.4.2. FIRST EXPERIMENTS ON THE BONDING OF PROTIUM TO SMALL ZIRCONIUM SPONGE SAMPLES WERE UNDERTAKEN IN THE EXPERIMENTAL FACILITY IN ORDER TO FIX PROTIUM/TRITIUM TO ZIRCONIUM SPONGE.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts

Coordinator

FORSCHUNGSZENTRUM JUELICH GMBH
Address
Wilhelm Johnen Strasse
52425 Juelich
Germany