Synroc specimens doped individually with ˜ 1 wt% of Np or Pu have been studied, after leaching for >2,500 days, using α-spectroscopy and SEM. In the last leaching period, the leachant was replaced on either a daily or monthly basis. When the leachant was replaced on a daily basis the release rate of Np was similar to that measured when the samples were first leached, whereas for the monthly replacement the release rates of Np or Pu were about a factor of 20 to 30 lower than that for daily replacement. These findings agree generally with the results obtained from surface examination of the samples which showed that the thickness of actinidedepleted surface layer of anatase was 0.3 μm for monthly replacement but only 0.1 μm when the leachant was replaced frequently. Overall, the results suggest that release of actinides from Synroc are controlled by solubility limiting effects at the surface area to volume ratios employed in MCC-1 tests.
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Hart, K.P., Vance, E.R., Stanojevic, R. et al. Alpha-Spectroscopy and Leach Testing of Synroc Doped with Actinide Elements. MRS Online Proceedings Library 556, 173 (1998). https://doi.org/10.1557/PROC-556-173