Determining Redox Constants of Aqueous Uranium to Help Develop a Closed Nuclear Fuel Cycle


Israel Shebley

Document Type

Student Presentation

Presentation Date


Faculty Sponsor

Dale Russell


The accumulation of nuclear waste is a threat to health and the environment. Whether or not nuclear energy remains an option, the huge amounts of legacy waste and cancellation of geological storage requires a clean-up method. If nuclear energy is to continue to be part of the nation’s total energy production, a closed nuclear fuel cycle is required. The goal of this work is to answer some fundamental questions that would enable development of the closed cycle.

Kinetics of electron transfer steps for the reduction of U (VI) to U (III) and the oxidation of U (III) to U (VI) are determined using cyclic and linear sweep voltammetries. The rate constant for one electron transfer step can be determined by varying the scan rate and measuring the peak currents and potentials according to

where is the heterogeneous electron transfer rate constant at the peak potential, D is the diffusion coefficient, R is 8.314 , T is the absolute temperature, n is number of electrons transferred, F is 9.648 , is the transfer coefficient for the electrode process, and v is the sweep rate.

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