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Uranium Hexafluoride Reprocessing


Plasmachemical Technology Development with Processing Uranium Hexfluoride into Uranium Oxides for Long Storage and Fluorine Regeneration as Unaqueous Hydrogen Fluoride.

Tech Area / Field

  • ENV-RWT/Radioactive Waste Treatment/Environment

8 Project completed

Registration date

Completion date

Senior Project Manager
Nagai H

Leading Institute
VNIIKhT (Chemical Technology), Russia, Moscow

Supporting institutes

  • Siberian Chemical Combine, Russia, Tomsk reg., Seversk


  • Allied Signal Chemicals Inc. / Amorphous Metals, USA, NJ, Morristown

Project summary

The project purpose is to develop technology elimina-ting storage of large quantity dumped uranium hexafluoride depleted with isotope U-235 (less 0.1% U-235) due to conver-sion into safe storage form - uranium oxides. Designing this problem another task can be solved - return deficit fluorine as nonaqueous hydrogen fluoride form into fuel cycle and economics.

Technology scheme for processing dumped uranium hexaf-luoride includes UF6 evaporation in SHF-field for safe remo-ving from the gas-bags where it has being kept for a long period; uranium hexafluoride conversion into uranium oxides and hydrogen acid using nonaqueous plasma method; acid rec-tification providing nonaqueous hydrogen fluoride.

The SHF-heating technique allows to evaporate safely the UF6 from old (weard and partially damaged) tanks due to direct heating of gaseous Uranium Hexafluoride inside the tank and keeping cool an outer wall. The authors have an appropriate classified confidential Inventor's Application for this method.

This project comprises R&D (mathematical model for plasma conversion and HF-acid rectification, conversion ki-netics of depleted uranium hexafluoride; technology parame-ters optimization; physico-chemical properties oxides study and optimization, development of the process and apparatus for plasma-rectification technology, testing and finishing separate apparatus and scheme upon the whole producing ten-tative test batches of the uranium oxides and nonaqueous hydrogen fluoride and their properties study in detail.

Investigations and tests result in recommendations for commercial production design. The problem of depleted uranium hexafluoride processing has international features. Results obtained in this project can be transferred to foreign firms on commercial basis.