This paper addresses the stability of commercial cation exchangers when in contact with nitric acid that are under consideration for UCLan’s alternative reprocessing process. The paper describes the acid tolerance of four commercial ion exchange resins when exposed to 7M nitric acid for one year. The acid degradation was measured by FT-IR and TGA before and post acid exposure. Zirconium uptake was measured pre and post acid exposure as a means of determining degradation of functional sites. The resins undergo a degree of acid degradation depending on their chemical composition i.e., polymeric backbone, in some instances loss of functionality but also the introduction of new functional sites. The likely radiation dose that ion exchange resins would receive from spent nuclear fuel dissolver liquor and from adsorbed radioactive cesium 137 were estimated. It was inferred that the radiation dose the exchangers would receive from adsorbed cesium isotopes would be comparatively low when compared with the radiation background of the spent fuel dissolver liquor.
Published Date: 2019-04-26; Received Date: 2018-11-26