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Bench-scale electrokinetic remediation for cesium-contaminated sediment at the Hanford Site, USA


We conducted a laboratory experiment to investigate the efficiency of electrokinetic (EK) remediation method for Hanford sediment (76 % sand and 24 % silt–clay) after artificial contamination with nonradioactive 133Cs (0.01 M CsNO3) as a surrogate for radioactive 137Cs. A significant removal of cationic 133Cs from the sediment occurred from the cathode side (−), whereas the removal was negligible from the anode side (+) during the EK remediation process for 68 days. The experimental results suggest that the EK method can effectively remove radioactive Cs from the surface or subsurface sediment contaminated by radioactive materials in the Hanford Site, Washington, USA.

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The project was primarily supported by WCU (World Class University) and BK21 + programs at the Division of Advanced Nuclear Engineering (DANE) in POSTECH through the National Research Foundation of Korea funded by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (R31-30005). The authors would like to thank Steven Baum for ICP–OES and ICP-MS analyses in the Environmental Sciences Laboratory, and Laxmikant Saraf for SEM–EDS analysis in EMSL (Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory), a DOE national scientific user facility at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). PNNL is operated by Battelle for the U.S. DOE under contract DE-AC06-76RLO 1830.

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Correspondence to Wooyong Um.

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Jung, H.B., Yang, JS. & Um, W. Bench-scale electrokinetic remediation for cesium-contaminated sediment at the Hanford Site, USA. J Radioanal Nucl Chem 304, 615–625 (2015).

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  • Cesium
  • Electrokinetic remediation
  • Hanford site
  • Cation exchange