37th Annual CNS Conference - 2017 June 04-07

Presented at:
37th Annual CNS Conference
2017 June 04-07
Niagara Falls
Session Title:
2A1 - Health, Environment & Spent Fuel / Waste Management (II)

P. Zeh (AREVA GmbH)
A. Stahl (AREVA GmbH)
B. Cooper (AREVA NP Canada)


Carbon-14 is commonly used for pharmacokinetic and metabolism studies and allows the labeling of organic molecules. Presently C-14 is produced separately by neutron activation of nitride compounds. C-14 is also produced in large quantities in heavy water reactors and ends up, bound as carbonate, mainly at ion-exchange resin of coolant purification systems. Until now, these resins have been treated as rad-waste. Previous attempts to extract C-14 from those resins with mineral acid failed economically due to the high increase of additional rad-waste.

AREVA has developed a low waste process, using organic acid for C-14 extraction from coolant purification resins. The advantage of the new developed process is that the organic acid can be decomposed in a second step. By this, the mobilization of unfavorable radionuclides (e.g. Co-60, Cs-137) can be reversed and no further rad-waste is created. After the lab scale tests, a prototype of the resin treatment facility is constructed and will be tested in 2017.

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