Fission product release from spent nuclear UOX fuel dissolution: Comparison between anoxic and reducing conditions and impact of pH

Thierry Mennecart, Christelle Cachoir, Karel Lemmens, R. Gaggiano, Katrien Meert, Tomas Vandoorne

Research outputpeer-review


Several clad segments from the same spent nuclear fuel rod were leached in a highly alkaline solution representative of the conditions expected in the current Belgian reference deep disposal design, and in presence of hydrogen. The results are compared with experiments that were conducted with clad and declad samples in a bicarbonate solution without presence of hydrogen. For the monitored radionuclides (238U, 90Sr, 137Cs, 129I, 99Tc), a fast initial release was observed. Afterwards, the release depended on the experimental conditions (medium, redox conditions) for uranium, strontium and technetium, but not for cesium and iodine. The cumulated released fractions were quantified at the end of the experiment. Graphical Abstract: (Figure presented.)

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages5
JournalMRS Advances
StateAccepted/In press - Mar 2024


Funding was provided by FP7 Euratom (Grant No. 295722). The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Union’s European Atomic Energy Community’s (Euratom) Seventh Framework Programme FP7/2007-2011 under Grant Agreement No. 295722 (FIRST-Nuclides project). This work was performed as part of the programme of the Belgian Agency for Radioactive Waste and Enriched Fissile Materials (NIRAS/ONDRAF) on the geological disposal of high level/long-lived radioactive waste. The authors gratefully acknowledge the technical support from B. Gielen, P. Schroeders and G. Cools, as well as AREVA, Electrabel and Tractebel for the data related to the fuel rod.

FundersFunder number
Euratom 7th Framework Programme295722

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • General Materials Science
    • Condensed Matter Physics
    • Mechanics of Materials
    • Mechanical Engineering

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