Project Synopsis

Develop a process design package for a uranium dissolution system that converts uranium oxides and uranium nitrate into a uranyl nitrate solution, as well as provide process design training to client staff chemical process engineers.

Project Summary

This project involved the preparation of a process design for a uranium dissolution system that converts uranium oxides and uranium nitrates to a uranyl nitrate solution for a private-sector uranium processing company.  The uranium oxides and crystals are introduced to an enclosure and dropped into a dissolution vessel.  This process design provides for nitric acid, hydrogen peroxide, and water to be introduced and the subsequent solution to be pumped through bag filters and cartridge filters. Upon passing through these filters, the filtered uranyl nitrate is delivered to test columns.  Process Engineering Associates, LLC (PROCESS) was contracted to both develop the process design but also teach client staff engineers how to prepare a process design.

The deliverables that were produced for the uranium dissolution system included the following items:

  • Design Basis
  • Material & Energy Balance
  • PFDs
  • P&IDs
  • Layout Drawings
  • Data Sheets
  • Equipment List
  • Line List
  • Instrument List
  • Specialty Items List
  • Functional Controls Description
  • Equipment Bid Quotations.

In addition to the process design work to produce a uranium oxide dissolver system, PROCESS was tasked with delivering a training class for engineers to provide information on the basics of a process design, as well how to develop the deliverables which go into the design.  Three (3) training classes where completed.  The first was an introduction to process design/engineering which provided an overview of all the different phases of process design.  In the second training class, the participates assisted in the process design of a sodium hydroxide plant which took a feasibility study and created a material balance, process flow diagram, and piping and instrumentation diagrams.  The last training session was a design review of the remaining deliverables for the above-mentioned dissolver system as well as the methodology that was used to create them.

Industry Type

Nuclear Materials Processing

Utilized Skills

  • Process design of nuclear related processes
  • Process design training.

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