The handling and processing of UF6 is accompanied by the potential for a reaction with water, usually as airborne moisture, and the subsequent risk of releasing airborne, particulate UO2F2 and gaseous hydrogen fluoride. We have studied this reaction under the simulated conditions of a "release" of UF6, whereby hot, pressurized UF6 gas suddenly escapes into ambient air. The "release" experiment simulates, on a small scale, the accidental mixing of UF6 gas with the atmosphere in the absence of wind currents. The data obtained with the use of FT-IR spectroscopy have provided information which permits a much better understanding of the behavior of the evolved hydrogen fluoride, the residual water vapor, and the airborne, particulate UO2F2 and of their relation to each other.
D. P. Armstrong, W. D. Bostick, and W. H. Fletcher, "An FT-IR Study of the Atmospheric Hydrolysis of Uranium Hexafluoride," Appl. Spectrosc. 45, 1008-1016 (1991)
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