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Production & Enrichment of Uranium
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Production & Enrichment of Uranium






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Production & Enrichment of Uranium Production & Enrichment of Uranium Presentation Transcript

  • CONTENTS  What is Uranium  Production Of Uranium Nuclear Fuel Cycle  Uranium in Pakistan  Applications of Uranium  Conclusions
  • WHAT IS URANIUM??? Uranium is a silvery-white metallic element in the actinide series of the periodic table . It has a symbol U and atomic number 92. A uranium of the 51st abundant element in the Earth's crust
  • HISTORY OF URANIUM Uranium was discovered in 1789 by Martin Klaproth, a German chemist, who isolated an oxide of uranium while analyzing pitchblende samples Uranium was named after the planet Uranus, in 1791.
  • CONT… Antoine Henri Becquerel discovered radioactivity by using uranium in 1896. It was discovered in 1938 that uranium could be split to release energy that is fission. This was accomplished by Otto Hahn and Fritz Strassman.
  • CHARACTERISTICS OF URANIUM •Uranium is weakly radioactive metal. •It is malleable, ductile, slightly paramagnetic. • Strongly electropositive and is a poor electrical conductor. • Uranium metal has very high density •. Uranium-235 was the first isotope that was found to be fissile. •Uranium-235 can be used to make an atomic bomb. The first nuclear bomb used in war relied on uranium fission.
  • ISOTOPES OF URANIUM In nature, uranium is found as uranium-238 (99.2739– 99.2752%), uranium-235 (0.7198–0.7202 %), and a very small amount of uranium-234 (0.0050–0.0059%). The three naturally occurring isotopes of uranium are each radioactive
  • CONT.. In a typical sample of natural uranium, most of the mass (99.3%) would consist of atoms of U-238, and a very small portion of the total mass (0.7%) would consist of atoms of U-235.
  • PRODUCTION OF URANIUM Nuclear fuel cycle The nuclear fuel cycle is the series of industrial processes which involve the production of uranium and use in nuclear energy power reactors. It involves Mining of Uranium Milling of Uranium Enrichment of Uranium Fabrication Reprocessing of used fuel
  • CONT.. Uranium mining and milling Conversion Fabrication Enrichment Reactor Spent fuel storage Waste disposal Reprocessing Nuclear fuel cycle
  • MINING OF URANIUM The process or business of extracting the precious or valuable metals from the earth either in their native state or in their ores is called mining. . Mining of Uranium can be; Underground mining Open pit mining In situ leaching
  • MILLING OF URANIUM Process of conversion of extracted uranium ore to a usable form called yellow cake is called milling . The ore is first crushed to a fine powder by passing raw uranium ore through crushers and grinders. This is further processed with concentrated acid, alkaline, or peroxide solutions to leach out the uranium. Yellowcake is what remains after drying and filtering.
  • CONVERSION OF YELLOW CAKE TO UF6 Yellow cake is converted into UF6 through series of chemical reactions because in enrichment Uf6 will b used.
  • ENRICHMENT OF URANIUM Uranium enrichment is the technology in which percent composition of uranium-235 is increased through different processes. Because Uranium-235 is the only naturally occurring fissile isotope .Natural uranium is 99.284% 238U isotope, with 235U only constituting about 0.711% of its weight.
  • CONT…
  • METHODS OF ENRICHMENT  Gaseous diffusion.  Gas centrifuge  Electromagnetic separation  Laser enrichment
  • CONT.. Gas centrifuge Principle Rotation of cylinders creates a strong centrifugal force which moves the the heavier gas molecules containing U 238 to outside of cylinder and lighter U235 molecules collect closer to the center.
  • CONT.. Gas Centrifuge
  • CONT.. Gaseous Diffusion Principle Gaseous diffusion forces uranium hexafluoride gas through series of semi-permeable membranes which separates the isotopes from each other; The lighter, smaller U-235 moves through the membrane easier than the larger heavier U-238
  • CONT..
  • CONT..  Electromagnetic separation. In the electromagnetic isotope separation process (EMIS), metallic uranium is first vaporized, and then ionized to positively charged ions. The cations are then accelerated and subsequently deflected by magnetic fields onto their respective collection targets (like mass spectrometry)
  • CONT..
  • FUEL FABRICATION Fuel fabrication convert enriched UF6 into fuel for nuclear reactors. (UO2) The UO2 powder is pressed into fuel pellets.The pellets are then encased in metal tubes to form fuel rods, which are then arranged into a fuel assembly and ready for introduction into a reactor.
  • REACTOR Inside a nuclear reactor the nuclei of uranium-235 atoms split (fission) and, in the process, release energy. This energy is used to heat water and turn it into steam. The steam is used to drive a turbine connected to a generator that produces electricity. The fissioning of uranium is used as a source of heat in a nuclear power plant in the same way that the burning of coal, gas or oil is used as a source of heat in a fossil fuel power plant
  • USED FUEL After 12-24 months the 'spent fuel' is removed from the reactor because it is no longer practical to continue to use as a fuel .The amount of energy produced from a fuel bundle varies with the type of reactor and the policy of the reactor operator. Typically, some 46 million kilowatt-hours of electricity are produced from one tonne of natural uranium. The production of this amount of electrical power from fossil fuels would require the burning of over 20,000 tonnes of black coal or 8.5 million cubic metres of gas.
  • REPROCESSING Used fuel is about 95% uranium-238 but it also contains up to 1% uranium-235 that has not fissioned, about 1% plutonium and 3% fission products In a reprocessing facility the used fuel is separated into its three components: uranium, plutonium and waste, by chopping up the fuel rods and dissolving them in acid to separate the various materials. It enables recycling of the uranium and plutonium into fresh fuel, and produces a significantly reduced amount of waste
  • .. Uranium recycling The uranium recovered from reprocessing, which typically contains a slightly higher concentration of U-235 than occurs in nature, can be reused as fuel after similar ways of conversion and enrichment.(as described above). Cont
  • URANIUM RESERVES IN PAKISTAN Baghalchore Uranium was discovered in May 1959 by the Geological Survey of Pakistan at Bagalchore (Bagalchur), near Dera Ghazi Khan, in the southern part of the province of Punjab. Ore grade at Bagalchore was initially described as ranging from 0.05–0.5 percent, with an average of approximately 0.15 percent uranium. The Bagalchore mine was reported to be nearly exhausted by 1998.
  • CONT.. A second uranium mine was opened at Qabul Khel in 1992, and mining of deposits at the Nangana and Taunsa deposits (both located near Dera Ghazi Khan) started in 1996 and 2002 respectively, all using in situ leaching technology.
  • APPLICATIONS OF URANIUM The main use of uranium is to fuel nuclear plants. One kilogram of U-234 can produce about 80 terajoules of energy (8×1013 joules) assuming complete fission Before the discovery of radioactivity, uranium was primarily used in small amounts for yellow glass and pottery glazes. Uranium was also used in photographic chemicals especially uranium nitrate as a toner, in lamp filaments.
  • CONT…  Because of its long half life it is being used in dating the age of the earth.  Uranium metal is used as a target for high-powered x-ray machines.  Uranium is used to power nuclear powered submarines and ships.