Chapter 10.1 The role of interfacial phenomena in the contamination and decontamination of nuclear reactors

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Summary. The very aim of this chapter was to highlight the significance and potentialities of the application of radioactive-tracer technique elaborated by G. Hevesy in the studies of contamination-decontamination problems of nuclear reactors. Bearing in mind that most of the prospective readers are not very familiar with sources, and significance of the radioactive contamination as well as the decontamination strategy at nuclear reactors, an attempt was made to discuss the theoretical and technical details of these issues. Significant part of the present article is focused on the methodology and applicability of the radiotracer methods used for the investigation of radioactive contamination-decontamination processes on construction materials of industrial importance. Owing to the fact that results of the radiotracer research in several areas have been reviewed in the previous chapters, the radioactive labeling methods applied exclusively for studying contamination-decontamination processes at solid/liquid interfaces were taken into consideration. To demonstrate the usefulness of the upgraded versions of two in-situ radiotracer methods (so-called "foil" and "electrode lowering"), selected experimental situations in the field of contamination caused by corrosion product radionuclides (60Co and 110m deposition) have been described in some details. Finally, the last section of this chapter deals with the selection criteria and classification of decontamination techniques utilized in nuclear power plants. Special attention has been paid to the historical background and applicability of chemical decontamination, covering in details the detrimental corrosion effects of some well-known procedures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)313-358
Number of pages46
JournalInterface Science and Technology
Issue numberC
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2004


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry

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