A procedure for quantitation of total oxidized uranium for bioremediation studies

Journal of Microbiological Methods
By: , and 



A procedure was developed for the quantitation of complexed U(VI) during studies on U(VI) bioremediation. These studies typically involve conversion of soluble or complexed U(VI) (oxidized) to U(IV) (the reduced form which is much less soluble). Since U(VI) freely exchanges between material adsorbed to the solid phase and the dissolved phase, uranium bioremediation experiments require a mass balance of U in both its soluble and adsorbed forms as well as in the reduced sediment bound phase. We set out to optimize a procedure for extraction and quantitation of sediment bound U(VI). Various extractant volumes to sediment ratios were tested and it was found that between 1:1 to 8:1 ratios (v/w) there was a steady increase in U(VI) recovered, but no change with further increases in v/w ratio.

Various strengths of NaHCO3, Na-EDTA, and Na-citrate were used to evaluate complexed U(VI) recovery, while the efficiency of a single versus repeated extraction steps was compared with synthesized uranyl-phosphate and uranyl-hydroxide. Total recovery with 1 M NaHCO3 was 95.7% and 97.9% from uranyl-phosphate and uranyl-hydroxide, respectively, compared to 80.7% and 89.9% using 450 mM NaHCO3. Performing the procedure once yielded an efficiency of 81.1% and 92.3% for uranyl-phosphate and uranyl-hydroxide, respectively, as compared to three times. All other extractants yielded 7.9–82.0% in both experiments.

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title A procedure for quantitation of total oxidized uranium for bioremediation studies
Series title Journal of Microbiological Methods
DOI 10.1016/S0167-7012(02)00252-X
Volume 53
Issue 3
Year Published 2003
Language English
Publisher Elsevier
Contributing office(s) Toxic Substances Hydrology Program
Description 11 p.
First page 343
Last page 353
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