Absorption of Radium and Thorium from New Mexico Uranium Mill Tailing Solutions.
Beard-HR; Salisbury-HB; Shirts-MB
The Bureau of Mines investigated the absorption of radium and thorium from waste uranium leach liquor by clays and other materials. This work was conducted in support of the Bureau's goal of minimizing the environmental conflicts, impacts, and occupational hazards associated with mining and milling operations. Tailing and soil samples from New Mexico were evaluated for their potential to absorb radium and thorium from tailing liquors. Absorption ranged from 0 to 97 pct for radium and 0 to 60 pct for thorium. Some samples that readily absorbed radium were contacted with various salt solutions that could be present in tailing solutions to determine whether desorption would be a potential problem. The desorption of radium ranged from 0 to 75 pct. An alpha spectrometric method was used to determine the radium and thorium concentrations in the solutions and solids.
IH; Report of Investigation;