China alliance investigates seawater uranium extraction

14 November 2019

China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) has formed an innovation alliance to foster the research and application of extracting uranium from seawater, Xinhua reported on 12 November. The alliance, which was initiated by CNNC, brings together some 20 research institutions and universities. It will focus on setting standards for the technology and products used in the extraction process. It will help to accelerate the development of core technologies and new products, as well as create research platforms and a test base for uranium extraction from seawater to overcome hurdles in practical application. It is estimated that dresser contains about 4.5 billion tonnes of uranium - about 1,000 times more than land proven reserves. However, the concentration of uranium in seawater is extremely low, making it a huge challenge to develop cost-effective seawater uranium extraction technology. China has made some progress in the development of absorption materials and equipment for uranium extraction from seawater, but still has a long way to go before commercial development, according to CNNC.

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