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Fusion Science and Technology
Hanford completes wastewater basin work to support tank waste treatment
Record-breaking heat and the vast size of the job did not stop the Department of Energy’s Office of River Protection and its tank operations contractor, Washington River Protection Solutions (WRPS), from completing a construction project critical to the Hanford Site’s Direct-Feed Low-Activity Waste program for treating radioactive tank waste.
Kazuya Furuichi, Kazunari Katayama, Hiroyuki Date, Toshiharu Takeishi, Satoshi Fukada
Fusion Science and Technology | Volume 68 | Number 2 | September 2015 | Pages 458-464
Technical Note | Proceedings of TOFE-2014 | dx.doi.org/10.13182/FST14-969
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In this study, tritiated water was poured in a packed bed of natural soil and subsequently distilled water was poured in the bed to recover tritium retained in the soil at room temperature. From tritium balance, 22.5 % (7.1 MBq) of input tritium (31.5 MBq) was retained in the soil bed. By distilled water purge, 70 % (5 MBq) of retained tritium was recovered but 30% (2.1MBq) was left. To recover residual tritium, the soil was immersed in distilled water for 531 days but the amount of tritium released to distilled water was slight (0.04 MBq). A part of the soil immersed in the water was taken out and heated up to 300°C under humid oxygen atmosphere. Tritium release terminated at about 50 hours. 11 % (0.23 MBq) of retained tritium was released. By heating to 1000°C, the release amount of tritium increased proportionally to the time and additional 4% (0.09 MBq) was released at 5 hours. The desorption rates of tritium in each process was quantified.
Tritium is quite slowly released from the natural soil exposed to tritiated water in water at room temperature. However, a long time heating by 1000°C would be required to try to recover all tritium from the contaminated soil positively, although tritium recovery was not completed in this work.