The Reaction of Hydrogen and Oxygen in the Presence of Concretes Incorporating Simulated Radioactive Waste
The radiolysis of contained water, with the potential of pressurization due to the accumulation of the radiolytically produced gases, has been identified as a major concern for radioactive wastes fixed in cementitious matrices (1). One estimate (1) of the pressure buildup is that about 100 atm could accumulate in a standard canister containing alpha waste after 100,000 years. However, even for this pressure, the rate of gas production would be sma~l. For example, a standard 200-liter canister containing 10 g of 23 Pu dispersed in concrete containing normal concentrations of unbound water would generate a maximum of about 1 ml of H2 per day. Since the radiolysis of concrete is dependent on the amount of unbound or free water present in the system, removal of all or most of this water would greatly reduce this rate (2). Regardless of the production rate, however, pressurization from the accumulation of hydrogen and oxygen would be avoided if there were sufficient recombination of these gases during or after their generation. These studies were undertaken to determine the recombination rates obtained with special cementitious matrices.
KeywordsRadioactive Waste Water Yield Ferric Oxide Nuclear Waste Management Cementitious Matrice
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