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High-efficiency technology for lithium isotope separation using an ionic-liquid impregnated organic membrane

Hoshino, Tsuyoshi; Terai, Takayuki*

The tritium needed as a fuel for fusion reactors is produced by the neutron capture reaction of lithium-6 ($$^{6}$$Li) in tritium breeding materials. However, natural Li contains only about 7.6 at.% $$^{6}$$Li. In Japan, new lithium isotope separation technique using ionic-liquid impregnated organic membranes have been developed. The improvement in the durability of the ionic-liquid impregnated organic membrane is one of the main issues for stable, long-term operation of electrodialysis cells while maintaining good performance. Therefore, we developed highly-durable ionic-liquid impregnated organic membrane. Both ends of the ionic-liquid impregnated organic membrane were covered by a nafion 324 overcoat to prevent the outflow of the ionic liquid. The transmission of Lithium aqueous solution after 10 hours under the highly-durable ionic-liquid impregnated organic membrane is almost 13%. So this highly-durable ionic-liquid impregnated organic membrane for long operating of electrodialysis cells has been developed through successful prevention of ion liquid dissolution.

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Category:Nuclear Science & Technology

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