Russian scientists created an economical way of processing radioactive waste
Krasnoyarsk chemists have proposed an approach that makes possible one-step conversion of cesium and strontium radionuclides contained in waste into an insoluble mineral-like form and simultaneously reduce their concentration in solution.
«The process of treatment of alkaline solutions is carried out at a temperature of no higher than 150 degrees Celsius using hollow aluminosilicate microspheres, known as 'cenospheres'. Such microspheres are obtained from conventional fly ash, a byproduct of coal combustion. They contain aluminium, silicon, and small amounts of other metals, which under certain conditions enter into chemical reactions with cesium and strontium,» the message said.
The technology could help extract up to 99% of radioactive elements from alkaline solutions, Tatiana Vereshchagina, a leading researcher at the Institute of Chemistry and Chemical Technology of the FIC of the Kola Branch of the SB RAS, pointed out.