Mixtures of simulated Hanford low-activity aqueous waste and glass precursor additives were heat treated at various temperatures up to 1000°C and characterized using X-ray diffraction, X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy, gas chromatography mass spectroscopy, and inductively coupled plasma–mass spectroscopy. It was found after heating the simulant mixture up to 700°C, the majority of the sodium nitrite present in the original waste reacted with the silica and perhaps boron species in the additives to form C–and N-containing gases, oxygen gas, and lower melting phases which contributed to the observed batch volume expansion beginning at these temperatures. Elemental analyses of minor components in the simulant mixture showed that I, Cl, and S exhibited significant losses during heating, presumably due to volatilization or entrainment. For the case of I, nearly 90% on an elemental basis was lost from the simulant mixture after processing to 1000°C, whereas Re exhibited less than 40% loss.
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Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is operated for the United States Department of Energy by the Battelle Memorial Institute under contract DE-AC06-76RLO 1830.
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Darab, J.G., Meiers, E.M. & Smith, P.A. Behavior of Simulated Hanford Slurries During Conversion to Glass. MRS Online Proceedings Library 556, 215 (1998). https://doi.org/10.1557/PROC-556-215