Database of Promising Adsorbents for Decontamination of Radioactive Substances
after Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plants Accident
A large amount of radioactive substances has discharged from the Fukushima
Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant following the Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami,
and made the severe damages around the plants. The discharged radionuclides
were 131I (half-life: ca. 8 days), 137Cs ((half-life: ca. 30 years), 90Sr (half-life: ca. 29 years), 89Sr (half-life: ca 50 days) and so on.
Contamination resulting from the release of radioactive substances affects
a wide range of environments. The assumed objects range from contaminated
water including seawater which was used to tool the reactor core and is
accumulating at the power plant site, contaminated soil in the immediate
vicinity of the plant and in the larger region around the plant (rice paddies,
fields, orchards, etc.), woods and forests, water, buildings, roadways,
and others. The distribution of contaminated water is also extremely diverse,
encompassing seawater, river water, ponds and lakes, pools, agricultural
water, etc. Because it is necessary to remove radioactive substances from
this diverse range of sites, NIMS is performing experiments and collecting
data on many types of adsorbents under a wide variety of conditions.
In reality, even natural minerals having the same group name possess different
adsorption capacities, depending on the chemical composition and original
region where the substance was produced. Performance also varies greatly
depending on use conditions, such as the concentration of radioactive substances,
acidity of the use environment, and the like. In other words, because the
most effective adsorbent will vary depending on the use environment, it
is necessary to select the optimum adsorbent for the conditions at each
site. However, comprehensive data showing the adsorption capacities of
the large number of promising materials did not exist anywhere in the world,
highlighting the urgent need to create a database for use when selecting
adsorbents. The National Institute for Materials Science (NIMS) is collecting
basic data on natural minerals produced in various regions and inorganic
materials with different chemical compositions as a tool for selecting
suitable materials. The objects are adsorbents for cesium, strontium, and
iodine. For the adsorbents under study, NIMS has collected nearly 800 basic
data items for 60 species of materials from various localities and with
various chemical compositions.
The basic data for adsorption capacities were collected in the following
Figure (Experimental Procedures). The adsorption experiments were carried
out for the promising materials with distilled water containing different
amount of cesium chloride, strontium chloride and iodine. The mixture of
adsorbent with appropriate amount of cesium chloride, strontium chloride
or iodine aqueous solution was prepared at the fixed solid/solution ratio
(e.g. 0.1g of adsorbent with 10 mL solution), and then shaken at room temperature
(23°C) for 24 hours. After solid/liquid separation, the amount of Cs, Sr
or I were determined by ICP method, etc. The experiments were performed
at a limited condition. Therefore the collected data do not discuss the
merits of the desired adsorbent. The appropriate adsorbent should be selected
according to the conditions and processes. Please use the database by your
Database construction is being carried out by a total of 7 universities,
4 Independent Administrative Institutions (IAIs), and 1 foundation under
National Institute for Materials Science. In addition to NIMS, the participating
organizations are Hokkaido University, Iwate University, Tokyo Institute
of Technology, Shimane University, the University of Miyazaki, Tokyo Metropolitan
University, Kanazawa Institute of Technology, the Japan International Research
Center for Agricultural Sciences (JIRCAS), the National Institute of Advanced
Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), the Japan Atomic Energy Agency
(JAEA), and the Central Research Institute of the Electric Power Industry
(CRIEPI). These research teams are also key members of the Clay Science
Society of Japan.
This research and development project is being implemented mainly with
support from the FY2011 Strategic Funds for Promotion of Science and Technology,
"Establishment of the Base for Taking Measures for Environmental Impact
of Radioactive Substances" of the Ministry of Education, Culture,
Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT).
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