Corrosion behavior of spent nuclear fuel in high pH solutions – Effect of hydrogen

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In accordance with the Belgian “supercontainer design”, spent nuclear fuel (SNF) will be encapsulated in carbon steel canisters, surrounded by a concrete overpack for disposal in poorly-indurated clay. After re-saturation of the barriers by porewater, interactions with the concrete will result in solutions rich in NaOH, KOH and Ca(OH)2. Corrosion studies of SNF in ECW-type solution (Evolved Cement Water) and YCWCa-type solution (Young Cement Water with Ca) were performed under externally applied H2 overpressures over 426 days. Directly after H2 application, Tc concentrations decreased from >10-8 M to concentrations below detection limit. Based on the fractional release of selected fission products, low matrix dissolution rates of ~10-8/day were found in both experiments. U concentrations decreased finally to 1.5•10-9 M (YCWCa) and to 2.1•10-10 M (ECW), respectively. Am, Np and Pu concentrations were found throughout the experiments below their detection limits indicating an effective retention process.


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMRS Symposium Proceedings. Scientific Basis for Nuclear Waste Management XXXV
Place of PublicationUnited States
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2012
EventXXXV International Symposium "Scientific Basis for Nuclear Waste Management”, MRS 2011 - Materials Research Society, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Duration: 2 Oct 20117 Oct 2011

Publication series

NameMRS Symposium Proceedings


ConferenceXXXV International Symposium "Scientific Basis for Nuclear Waste Management”, MRS 2011
CityBuenos Aires


  • Spent nuclear fuel, supercontainer, concrete, hydrogen, matrix dissolution

ID: 248718