Formation of aquatic Th(IV) colloids and stabilization by interaction with Cm(III)/Eu(III)

The present investigation is to ascertain under what conditions actinide ions undergo aggregation via oxo-bridging to form stable colloidal species. Eu and Th are taken for this purpose as trivalent and tetravalent actinide homologue ions, respectively. For verification of the effects of impurities in chemicals on the actinide colloid generation, pH is adjusted either by a conventional acid-base titration or by coulometry without addition of NaOH. The colloid generation is monitored by highly sensitive laser-induced breakdown detection in varying pH from 3 to 7, first in dilute Eu and Th solutions separately and then in a mixture of both, all in 0.5 M HCl/NaCl. The formation of stable colloids is observed particularly in a mixed solution of Eu and Th, suggesting that aggregation via mutual oxo-bridging of trivalent and tetravalent metal ions results in surface polarization, leading to stable hydrophilic particles of 20-30 nm in diameter. When Eu is replaced by Cm in the mixed solution in favor of the high fluorescence intensity of the latter, the chemical speciation is determined on colloid-borne Cm by time-resolved laser fluorescence spectroscopy. Two different colloid-borne Cm species, oxo-bridged with Th, are identified: a minor amount at 598.0 nm (denoted as Cm-Th(l)) and a major amount at 604.8 nm (Cm-Th(2)). The former is found as a transitional state, which converts to the latter with increasing pH and prevails at pH > 5.5. Both colloid-borne species (Cm-Th) are distinctively different from hydrolyzed Cm or its carbonate complexes with respect to their fluorescence peak positions and lifetimes. In conclusion, a mixed oxo-bridging of trivalent and tetravalent actinides elicits the generation of stable colloids, whereas individual ions in their pure state form colloids under oversaturation at near neutral pH only as a transitional state for precipitation.
Publisher
AMER CHEMICAL SOC
Issue Date
2006-03
Language
ENG
Keywords

LASER FLUORESCENCE SPECTROSCOPY; IN-STATU-NASCENDI; BREAKDOWN DETECTION; CARBONATE COMPLEXATION; SOLUBILITY; ACTINIDES; HYDROLYSIS; GENERATION; SPECIATION; CM(III)

Citation

JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL CHEMISTRY B, v.110, no.11, pp.5416 - 5422

ISSN
1520-6106
DOI
10.1021/jp051091c
URI
http://hdl.handle.net/10203/3731
Appears in Collection
NE-Journal Papers(저널논문)
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