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|All Authors / Contributors:||
Benoist Muzeau; Eric Simoni; Université de Paris-Sud. Faculté des Sciences d'Orsay (Essonne),
|Description:||1 v. (275 p.) : ill. en coul. ; 30 cm.|
|Responsibility:||Benoist Muzeau ; sous la direction de [Eric Simoni].|
The mechanisms of underwater alteration of spent fuels need to be understood on the assumption of a direct disposal of the assemblies in a geological formation or for long duration storage in pool. This work is a contribution to the study of the effects of the alpha and/or beta/gamma radiolysis of water on the oxidation and the dissolution of the UO2 matrix of UOX spent fuel. The effects of the alpha radiolysis, predominant in geological disposal conditions, were quantified using samples of UO2 doped with plutonium. The leaching experiments highlighted two types of control for the matrix alteration according to the alpha activity. The first is based on the radiolytic oxidation of the surface and leads to a continuous release of uranium in solution whereas the second is based on a control by the solubility of uranium. An activity threshold, located between 18 MBq/g and 33 MBq/g, was defined in a carbonated water. The value of this threshold is dependent on the experimental conditions and the presence or not of electro-active species such as hydrogen in the system. The effects of the alpha/beta/gamma radiolysis in relation with the storage conditions were also quantified. The experimental data obtained on spent fuel indicate that the alteration rate of the matrix based on the behaviour of tracer elements (caesium and strontium) reached a maximum value of some mg/m.j, even under very oxidizing conditions. The solubility of uranium and the nature of the secondary phases depend however on the extent of the oxidizing conditions.