New form of uranium found that could affect nuclear waste disposal plans. A new form of uranium has been discovered which is likely to have implications for current nuclear waste disposal plans, say scientists. Many governments are planning to dispose of radioactive waste by burying it deep underground. However, new research has found that in such storage conditions a new chemical form of uranium can temporarily occur, while small amounts of uranium are released into solution. If uranium is in solution, it could make its way into groundwater. Prof Samuel Shaw, a mineralogist at the University of Manchester and one of the authors of the study, led by University of Manchester’s Prof Katherine Morris and published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology. Shaw explains that wherever you bury these disposal units, there will be a wide variety of microbes living under the ground as well. Since no man-made barrier can be expected to withstand degradation for hundreds of thousands of years, radioactive waste will be in contact with groundwater containing these microbes and the chemicals they produce.
Guardian 20th Dec 2019 read more »
Formation of a U(VI)–Persulfide Complex during Environmentally Relevant Sulfidation of Iron (Oxyhydr) oxides.
ACS Publications 16th Dec 2019 read more »