The Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear accident brought together compromised irradiated fuel and large amounts of seawater in a high radiation field. Based on newly acquired thermochemical data for a series of uranyl peroxide compounds containing charge-balancing alkali cations, here we show that nanoscale cage clusters containing as many as 60 uranyl ions, bonded through peroxide and hydroxide bridges, are likely to form in solution or as precipitates under such conditions. These species will enhance the corrosion of the damaged fuel and, being thermodynamically stable and kinetically persistent in the absence of peroxide, they can potentially transport uranium over long distances.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||4|
|Journal||Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America|
|State||Published - Feb 7 2012|
- Actinyl peroxide
- Spent fuel
ASJC Scopus subject areas