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Report No.

Behavior of carbon-14 in the Tokai reprocessing plant

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Carbon-14 released from the nuclear facilities is an important radionuclide for the safety assessment, because it tends to accumulate in environment through food chain and has as a significant impact to personal dose. Carbon-14 has been monitored routinely as one of the main gaseous radionuclides exhausted from the Tokai Reprocessing Plant (TRP) since OCtober of 1991. Furthermore, behavior of carbon-14 in TRP has been investigated through the reprocessing operation and the literature survey. This report describes the result of investigation about the behavior of carbon-14 in TRP as followings. (1)Only a very small amount of carbon-14 in the fuel was liberated into the shear off-gas and most of it was liberated into the dissolver of-gass. Part of the carbon-14 was trapped at the caustic scrubber installed in the of-gas treatment process, and untrapped carbon-14 was released into the environment from the main stack. Amount of carbon-14 released from the main stack was about 4.1$$sim$$6.5GBq every ton of uranium reprocessed. (2)Carbon-14 trapped at the caustic scrubbers installed in the dissolver off-gas and in the vessel off-gas treatment process is transferred to the low active waste vessel. Amount of carbon-14 transferred to the low active waste vessel was about 5.4$$sim$$ 9.6GBq every ton of uranium reprocessed. (3)The total amount of carbon-14 input to TRP was summed up to about 11.9$$sim$$15.5 GBq every ton of uranium reprocessed considering the released amount from the main stack and the trapped amount in the off-gas treatment devices. The amount of nitrogen impurity in the initial fuel was calculated about 15$$sim$$22ppm of uranium metal based on the measured carbon-14. (4)The solution in the low active waste vesselis concentrated at the evaporator.Most of the carbon-14 in the solution was transferred into concentrated solution. (5)Tokai vitrification Demonstration Facility (TVF) started to operate in 1994. Since then, carbon-14 has been measured in the ...



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