Characterization of Plutonium in Maxey Flats Radioactive Trench Leachates

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Science  26 Jun 1981:
Vol. 212, Issue 4502, pp. 1506-1509
DOI: 10.1126/science.212.4502.1506


Plutonium in trench leachates at the Maxey Flats radioactive waste disposal site exists as dissolved species, primarily complexes of the tetravalent ion with strong organic ligands such as ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid. The complexes are not sorbed well by sediment and are only partly precipitated by ferric hydroxide. These results indicate the importance of isolating radioactive waste from organic matter.