Abstract

Uranium in nature is commonly associated with carbonaceous material. Laboratory studies were therefore conducted to determine the relative ability of various types of carbonaceous material and some other substances to remove uranium from solution. The results of these experiments indicate that the low-rank coals are more effective in extracting uranium than any of the other materials used. A chemical determination shows that nearly 100 percent of the available uranium in solution is removed by subbituminous coal. The uranium is apparently retained in the coal by an irreversible process. The notable affinity of uranium for coalified plant remains suggests that some uranium deposits may have been formed over a long period of time by the extraction of uranium from dilute ground-water solutions. A possible application of the results of this work may be the extraction of uranium by coal from natural water or from waste solutions from uranium-processing industrial plants.

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