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Process for producing an aggregate suitable for inclusion into a radiation shielding product

United States Patent

6,120,706
September 19, 2000
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Idaho National Laboratory - Visit the Technology Transfer and Commercialization Office Website
The present invention is directed to methods for converting depleted uranium hexafluoride to a stable depleted uranium silicide in a one-step reaction. Uranium silicide provides a stable aggregate material that can be added to concrete to increase the density of the concrete and, consequently, shield gamma radiation. As used herein, the term "uranium silicide" is defined as a compound generically having the formula U.sub.x Si.sub.y, wherein the x represents the molecules of uranium and the y represent the molecules of silicon. In accordance with the present invention, uranium hexafluoride is converted to a uranium silicide by contacting the uranium hexafluoride with a silicon-containing material at a temperature in a range between about 1450.degree. C. and about 1750.degree. C. The stable depleted uranium silicide is included as an aggregate in a radiation shielding product, such as a concrete product.
Lessing; Paul A. (Idaho Falls, ID), Kong; Peter C. (Idaho Falls, ID)
Bechtel BWXT Idaho, LLC (Idaho Falls, ID)
09/ 030,614
February 27, 1998
CONTRACTUAL ORIGIN OF THE INVENTION The United States has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. DE-AC07-94ID13223 between the U.S. Department of Energy and Lockheed Martin Idaho Technologies Company.