European Commission Joint Research Centre Institute for Transuranium Elements
Tel.: +49 (0)7247-951-0 E-mail
The main activities in HCT in the field of partitioning are the development and demonstration of processes for the selective recovery of actinides from spent fuel. Two complementary techniques are at present being developed; separation by aqueous methods and pyrochemical separation techniques.
|Double Strada Concept|
The double strata concept is an advanced fuel cycle, based on LWR´s and dedicated reactors for transmutation. It contains all reprocessing techniques; U, Pu are recycled by aqueous reprocessing and advanced reprocessing directs long-lived and radiotoxic elements to dedicated reactors in which they are multi-recycled by pyrochemical reprocessing.
Methods for the separation of valuable elements from spent nuclear fuel have been developed since 1940´s with the start of the Manhattan project. As the materials are highly radioactive all work has to be carried out in lead shielded hot-cells. Chemically the method of extraction is normally used (for example liquid-liquid extraction) where the element of interest is selectively separated and recovered. Different methods are available in the hot-cell facility of HCT for the development and demonstration of separation processes using genuine fuel solutions. The work is usually carried out in international projects and collaborations.
|Hot-cell facility of HCT unit|