Chemical-grade zirconium contains about 1–3 wt% hafnium, which is harmful for nuclear applications due to its high neutron-capture cross section. In the present paper, Zr-Hf separation in Sn-Cu-Zr-Hf and Cu-Zr-Hf alloy systems using molten salt containing CuCl2 or CuF2 was thermodynamically evaluated and lab-scale experiments on zirconium and hafnium separation in different molten salt systems were conducted. The best single-step Hf removal efficiency and Zr-Hf separation factor of about 95% and 9.0, respectively, were obtained with a NaCl-CaCl2-CuCl2 (3 wt%) molten salt system at 850°C and the CuCl2/Hf stoichiometric ratio of 1.5.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1664-1674
JournalSeparation Science and Technology (Philadelphia)
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2016

    Research areas

  • Hafnium removal, molten salt extraction, nuclear-grade zirconium, Zr-Hf separation

ID: 9884382