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Characteristics of host rocks, secondary minerals, and fluids would affect the transport of radionuclides from a previously proposed repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. Minerals in the Yucca Mountain tuffs that are important for retarding radionuclides include clinoptilolite and mordenite (zeolites), clay minerals, and iron and manganese oxides and hydroxides. Water compositions along flow paths beneath Yucca Mountain are controlled by dissolution reactions, silica and calcite precipitation, and ion-exchange reactions. Radionuclide concentrations along flow paths from a repository could be limited by (1) low waste-form dissolution rates, (2) low radionuclide solubility, and (3) radionuclide sorption onto geological media.

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