ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING AND ASSESSMENT, vol.151, pp.279-287, 2009 (SCI-Expanded)
Geochemical calculations were employed for the solubility and speciation of neodymium in a model soil solution as a function of pH. The calculations were based on the recently determined stability constants for Nd and solubility product for the Nd end-member of mineral monazite (NdPO(4)). Simulations were carried out at near neutral pH (pH 6.0 to pH 7.5) and 25A degrees C at the atmospheric CO(2) partial pressure. Additional calculations were also performed to assess Nd mobility at the extreme temperature conditions (300A degrees C) at neutral pH. Our results suggest that relatively dilute (Ionic Strength, I = 0.1), low-temperature waters may transport very small quantities of rare earth elements and actinides to the surficial environment at near neutral pH conditions. Evidently, higher temperature or extreme fluid composition may have a greater potential for mobilization of these elements. The results are pertinent to researchers interested in engineering applications for the precipitation of Nd and surrogate actinides from aqueous nuclear wastes.