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Uranium content and leachable fraction of fluorspars

Health Physics

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Abstract

Much attention in the radiological health community has recently focused on the management and regulation of naturally occurring radioactive materials. Although uranium-bearing minerals are present in a variety of fluorspar deposits, their potential consideration as naturally occurring radioactive materials has received only limited recognition. The uranium content of 28 samples of acid- and cryolite-grade (>97% CaF2) fluorspar from the National Defense Stockpile was found to range from 120 to 24,200 ??g kg-1, with a mean of 2,145 ??g kg-1. As a point of comparison, the average concentration of uranium in the upper crust of the earth is about 2,500 ??g kg-1. Leachability of this uranium was assessed by means of the Toxicity Characteristic Leaching Procedure (TCLP). The TCLP extractable fraction ranged from 1 to 98%, with a mean of 24% of the total uranium. The typically low concentrations of uranium seen in these materials probably reflects the removal of uranium-bearing mineral phases during the beneficiation of the crude fluorspar ore to achieve industrial specifications. Future NORM studies should examine crude fluorspar ores and flotation tailings.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Uranium content and leachable fraction of fluorspars
Series title:
Health Physics
Volume
79
Issue:
3
Year Published:
2000
Language:
English
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Health Physics
First page:
286
Last page:
290
Number of Pages:
5