The invention relates to a method for recovering uranium (U) and a method for enriching U by means of bioaccumulation in genetically improved microalgae. In order to obtain the improved microalgae, the invention includes an artificial-selection-based genetic improvement method used to obtain the Chlaf SCEP strain of Chlamydomonas fonticola. This strain contains uranium captured from the exterior and concentrated therein by means of active bioaccumulation in the form of metal precipitates representing 3% of the dry biomass of the alga. In addition, an isotopic fractionation of Δ235U/238U = 1.3‰ is produced, which can be applied in successive steps in order to increase enrichment in 235U. The invention also comprises the use of the microalgae in the recovery of dissolved uranium, producing an isotopic fractionation that can be used to obtain enriched uranium for industrial use, as well as to its use in the bioremediation of water and/or soil contaminated with uranium (mining, radioactive waste repositories, radioactive decay, nuclear accidents, spills, etc.).
|State||Published - Jun 12 2014|