Journal of
Engineering and Technology Research

  • Abbreviation: J. Eng. Technol. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2006-9790
  • DOI: 10.5897/JETR
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 183

Full Length Research Paper

Computational screening of ionic liquids as solvents for reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel

Yusuf A. Z.
  • Yusuf A. Z.
  • Nigerian National Petroleum Cooperation (NNPC), Nigeria.
  • Google Scholar
Zakir A.
  • Zakir A.
  • Human Physiology Department, Ahmadu Bello University Zaria.
  • Google Scholar
Mustapha S. I.
  • Mustapha S. I.
  • Chemical Engineering Department, Ahmadu Bello University Zaria.
  • Google Scholar
Halima S. A.
  • Halima S. A.
  • Chemical Engineering Department, Ahmadu Bello University Zaria.
  • Google Scholar
Nuhu M.
  • Nuhu M.
  • Chemical Engineering Department, Ahmadu Bello University Zaria.
  • Google Scholar


  •  Accepted: 07 January 2014
  •  Published: 17 January 2014

Abstract

COSMO-RS method was used in screening 2106 ionic liquids as alternate solvents to volatile n-dodecane used in PUREX. The distribution coefficients of uranylnitrate in ionic liquids/aqueous nitric acid biphasic system and the solubility of the ionic liquids in water were determined using COSMO-RS. Seventeen ionic liquids based on tetrafluoroborate BF4, were the most hydrophobic than others screened with hexamethylguanidiumtetrafluoroborate having the highest distribution coefficient. Their distribution coefficients were higher than that of the convention n-dodecane used for separation of uranium and plutonium from spent nuclear fuel but having more hydrophilicity than n-dodecane. This shows that ionic liquids can be used as alternate solvents in PUREX.

Key words: Ionic liquids, spent nuclear fuel (SNF), conductor-like screening model (COSMO-RS), Plutonium uranium extraction (PUREX), COSMOtherm, n-dodecane, n-tributylphosphate (TBP).