, Volume 242, Issue 2, pp 405-412

Adsorption of UO2 2+ on natural composite materials

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The prediction of the adsorption behavior of natural composite materials was studied by a single mineral approach. The adsorption of U(VI) on single minerals such as goethite, hematite, kaolinite and quartz was fully modeled using the diffuse-layer model in various experimental conditions. A quasi-thermodynamic database of surface complexation constants for single minerals was established in a consistent manner. In a preliminary work, the adsorption of a synthetic mixture of goethite and kaolinite was simulated using the model established for a single mineral system. The competitive adsorption of U(VI) between goethite and kaolinite can be well explained by the model. The adsorption behavior of natural composite materials taken from the Koongarra uranium deposit (Australia) was predicted in a similar manner. In comparison with the synthetic mixture, the prediction was less successful in the acidic pH range. However, the model predicted well the adsorption behavior in the neutral to alkaline pH range. Furthermore, the model reasonably explained the role of iron oxide minerals in the adsorption of U(VI) on natural composite materials.