The migration behavior of plutonium is expected to be affected by the corrosion products of carbon steel in compacted bentonite at high-level waste repositories. Electrochemical experiments were carried out to simulate the reducing environment created by ferrous iron ions in equilibrium with anoxic corrosion products of iron. The concentration profiles of plutonium could be described by the convection -dispersion equation to obtain two migration parameters: apparent migration velocity V a and apparent dispersion coefficient D a. The apparent migration velocity was evaluated within 1 nm/s and was found to be independent of the experiment duration and the dry density of bentonite in the interval 0.8-1.4 Mg/m3. The apparent dispersion coefficient increased with the experiment duration at a dry density of 1.4 Mg/m3. The results for other dry densities also showed the same trend. These findings indicate that plutonium migration likely starts after ferrous ions reach the plutonium, in other words, the reducing environment due to ferrous ions could change the chemical form of plutonium and/or the characteristics of compacted bentonite. The apparent diffusion coefficient was estimated to be around 0.5 to 2.2 Am2/s and increased with decreasing the dry density of bentonite.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Mechanics of Materials
- Mechanical Engineering