Title: Effect of Bicarbonate, Calcium, and pH on the Reactivity of As(V) and U(VI) Mixtures.
Authors: Gonzalez-Estrella, Jorge; Meza, Isabel; Burns, Annie Jane; Ali, Abdul-Mehdi S; Lezama-Pacheco, Juan S; Lichtner, Peter; Shaikh, Nabil; Fendorf, Scott; Cerrato, José M
Published In Environ Sci Technol, (2020 04 07)
Abstract: Natural or anthropogenic processes can increase the concentration of uranium (U) and arsenic (As) above the maximum contaminant levels in water sources. Bicarbonate and calcium (Ca) can have major impacts on U speciation and can affect the reactivity between U and As. We therefore investigated the reactivity of aqueous U and As mixtures with bicarbonate and Ca for acidic and neutral pH conditions. In experiments performed with 1 mM U and As mixtures, 10 mM Ca, and without added bicarbonate (pCO2 = 3.5), aqueous U decreased to <0.25 mM at pH 3 and 7. Aqueous As decreased the most at pH 3 (∼0.125 mM). Experiments initiated with 0.005 mM As and U showed similar trends. X-ray spectroscopy (i.e., XAS and EDX) and diffraction indicated that U-As-Ca- and U-Ca-bearing solids resemble uranospinite [Ca(UO2)2(AsO4)2·10H2O] and becquerelite [Ca(UO2)6O4(OH)6·8(H2O)]. These findings suggest that U-As-Ca-bearing solids formed in mixed solutions are stable at pH 3. However, the dissolution of U-As-Ca and U-Ca-bearing solids at pH 7 was observed in reactors containing 10 mM bicarbonate and Ca, suggesting a kinetic reaction of aqueous uranyl-calcium-carbonate complexation. Our study provides new insights regarding U and As mobilization for risk assessment and remediation strategies.
PubMed ID: 32176846
MeSH Terms: Arsenic*; Bicarbonates; Calcium; Hydrogen-Ion Concentration; Uranium*