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Hafnium radioisotope recovery from irradiated tantalum

United States Patent

April 10, 2001
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Los Alamos National Laboratory - Visit the Technology Transfer Division Website
Hafnium is recovered from irradiated tantalum by: (a) contacting the irradiated tantalum with at least one acid to obtain a solution of dissolved tantalum; (b) combining an aqueous solution of a calcium compound with the solution of dissolved tantalum to obtain a third combined solution; (c) precipitating hafnium, lanthanide, and insoluble calcium complexes from the third combined solution to obtain a first precipitate; (d) contacting the first precipitate of hafnium, lanthanide and calcium complexes with at least one fluoride ion complexing agent to form a fourth solution; (e) selectively adsorbing lanthanides and calcium from the fourth solution by cationic exchange; (f) separating fluoride ion complexing agent product from hafnium in the fourth solution by adding an aqueous solution of ferric chloride to obtain a second precipitate containing the hafnium and iron; (g) dissolving the second precipitate containing the hafnium and iron in acid to obtain an acid solution of hafnium and iron; (h) selectively adsorbing the iron from the acid solution of hafnium and iron by anionic exchange; (i) drying the ion exchanged hafnium solution to obtain hafnium isotopes. Additionally, if needed to remove residue remaining after the product is dried, dissolution in acid followed by cation exchange, then anion exchange, is performed.
Taylor; Wayne A. (Los Alamos, NM), Jamriska; David J. (Los Alamos, NM)
The Regents of the University of California (Los Alamos, NM)
09/ 616,762
July 14, 2000
This invention was made with government support under Contract No. W-7405-ENG-36 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The government has certain rights in the invention.