Effect of solution chemistry on the iodine release from iodoapatite in aqueous environments

Zelong Zhang, Léa Gustin, Weiwei Xie, Jie Lian, Kalliat T. Valsaraj, Jianwei Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


To ensure the safe disposal of nuclear waste, understanding the release process of radionuclides retained in the nuclear waste forms is of vital importance. Iodoapatite Pb9.85(VO4)6I1.7, a potential waste form for iodine-129, was selected as a model system for ceramic waste forms in this study to understand the effect of aqueous species on iodine release. Semi-dynamic leaching tests were conducted on bulk samples in cap-sealed Teflon vessels with 0.1 mol/L NaCl, Na2CO3, Na3PO4, and Na2SO4 solutions under 90 °C, fixed sample surface area to solution volume ratio of 5/m, and periodic replacement of leaching solutions. The reacted solutions were then analyzed by Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry and Inductively Coupled Plasma-Optical Emission Spectrometry; the leached surfaces were characterized by X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, and infrared spectroscopy. The result shows that, compared to deionized water, the ion-rich solutions enhanced the iodine release as a result of the increased ionic strength, reduced activity coefficient of dissolved species, and increased solution pH. Surface reactions can lead to the formations of secondary phases by ion-exchange and precipitation. These findings suggest that an ion-rich environment in the geological repository can be detrimental to the disposal safety of the nuclear waste form.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)161-170
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Nuclear Materials
StatePublished - Nov 2019
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering


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