A method for reprocessing spent nuclear fuel from a light water reactor includes the step of reacting spent nuclear fuel in a voloxidation vessel with an oxidizing gas having nitrogen dioxide and oxygen for a period sufficient to generate a solid oxidation product of the spent nuclear fuel. The reacting step includes the step of reacting, in a first zone of the voloxidation vessel, spent nuclear fuel with the oxidizing gas at a temperature ranging from 200-450.degree. C. to form an oxidized reaction product, and regenerating nitrogen dioxide, in a second zone of the voloxidation vessel, by reacting oxidizing gas comprising nitrogen monoxide and oxygen at a temperature ranging from 0-80.degree. C. The first zone and the second zone can be separate. A voloxidation system is also disclosed.
STATEMENT REGARDING FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT
This invention was made with government support under DE-AC05-000R22725 awarded by the United States Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in the invention.