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Development of the pyrochemical process of spent nitride fuels for ADS; Its elemental technologies and process flow diagram

ADS用窒化物燃料の乾式再処理技術の開発;要素技術とプロセスフロー図

林 博和; 佐藤 匠; 柴田 裕樹; 岩井 孝; 西原 健司; 荒井 康夫

Hayashi, Hirokazu; Sato, Takumi; Shibata, Hiroki; Iwai, Takashi; Nishihara, Kenji; Arai, Yasuo

使用済ADS用窒化物燃料の乾式再処理技術の開発における要素技術及びプロセス構築についての最近の研究の進展を紹介する。要素技術開発では、使用済燃料の陽極溶解、液体Cd陰極へのPu及びMAの回収、回収アクチノイドの再窒化等の主工程に加えて、陽極溶解残渣からのアクチノイド回収工程及び電解槽中の溶融塩の精製工程の技術開発を行った。また、主工程以外の工程を追加したプロセスフロー図を作成し、報告されている各工程に関する実験データをもとに、アクチノイド、FP及び希釈材元素の物質収支を求めた。物質収支の計算結果は、乾式処理工程でのPu及びMAの回収率99.97wt%、新燃料中への希土類元素の混入割合2.6wt%であり、いずれもADSの設計研究の中で定めている基準値を満足するものであった。

R&D on the transmutation of long-lived minor actinides (MA) by the accelerator-driven system (ADS) using nitride fuels is underway at Japan Atomic Energy Agency. In regard to reprocessing technology, pyrochemical process has several advantages in case of treating spent fuel with large decay heat and fast neutron emission, and recovering highly enriched N-15. In the pyrochemical reprocessing, plutonium (Pu) and MA are dissolved in LiCl-KCl eutectic melts and selectively recovered into liquid cadmium (Cd) cathode by molten salt electrorefining. The recovered Pu and MA are converted to nitrides by the nitridation-distillation combined method, in which the Cd alloys containing Pu and MA are heated in nitrogen gas stream. The authors have investigated its elemental technologies such as electrorefining and renitridation. On the other hand, development of the process flow diagram with the material balance sheet of the pyrochemical reprocessing of spent nitride fuel for ADS is in progress. This paper summarized recent progress of the study which aims to prove the technological applicability of pyrochemical process to the nitride fuel cycle for transmutation of MA.

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