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Development of Spectroelectrochemical Technetium Sensor for Groundwater Monitoring

Award Information
Agency: Department of Energy
Branch: N/A
Contract: DE-SC0009718
Agency Tracking Number: 211662
Amount: $990,973.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: 20b
Solicitation Number: DE-FOA-0001019
Solicitation Year: 2014
Award Year: 2014
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2014-04-08
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2016-04-07
Small Business Information
111 Downey St.
Norwood, MA 02062-2612
United States
DUNS: 076603836
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Job Bello
 (781) 769-9450
Business Contact
 Job Bello
Title: Dr.
Phone: (781) 769-9450
Research Institution
 Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
902 Battelle Blvd.
Richland, WA 99354-
United States

 () -
 Federally Funded R&D Center (FFRDC)

The remediation of underground nuclear waste storage tanks and associated disposal cribs and trenches at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) nuclear waste storage facilities, together with the associated needs to characterize and monitor the chemical compositions of the contaminants, presents a major scientific challenge. Several of these storage tanks are leaking, and significant quantities of wastes have leaked into the surrounding soil that extends to the vadose zone, which is the unsaturated region above the water table. The major isotopes of concern are 99Tc, 90Sr, 3H (tritium), 137Cs, 60Co, U, Pu, and Am. The danger posed by these radioisotopes entering the water system makes contamination of subsurface water below the vadose zone an urgent problem. Subsurface contamination by technetium is of particular concern for two reasons: the extremely long lifetime of its most common isotope 99Tc and the fast migration in soils of pertechnetate (TcO4), its most chemical forms. A novel spectroelectrochemical sensor will be develop for technetium, in particular pertechnetate, that can be used for in situ ground water monitoring in the vadose zone at the DOE nuclear waste storage tank farms. The sensor that will be developed will employ a preconcentrating polymer for pertechnetate in which a ligand for Tc will be incorporated and where upon reduction of the ligand-Tc complex will produce a luminescent analyte. Commercial Applications and OtherBenefits: The primary market opportunity is for monitoring leakage and migration of Tc into groundwater surrounding nuclear waste storage sites and nuclear fuel reprocessing facilities. Monitoring groundwater at nuclear power plants or where there has been an accident is another potential market for this technology.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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