Physicochemical characterization of Capstone depleted uranium aerosols IV: in vitro solubility analysis

Health Phys. 2009 Mar;96(3):292-305. doi: 10.1097/01.HP.0000291946.32717.2b.


As part of the Capstone Depleted Uranium (DU) Aerosol Study, the solubility of selected aerosol samples was measured using an accepted in vitro dissolution test system. This static system was employed along with a SUF (synthetic ultrafiltrate) solvent, which is designed to mimic the physiological chemistry of extracellular fluid. Using sequentially obtained solvent samples, the dissolution behavior over a 46-d test period was evaluated by fitting the measurement data to two- or three-component negative exponential functions. These functions were then compared with Type M and S absorption taken from the International Commission on Radiological Protection Publication 66 Human Respiratory Tract Model. The results indicated that there was a substantial variability in solubility of the aerosols, which in part depended on the type of armor being impacted by the DU penetrator and the particle size fraction being tested. Although some trends were suggested, the variability noted leads to uncertainties in predicting the solubility of other DU-based aerosols. Nevertheless, these data provide a useful experimental basis for modeling the intake-dose relationships for inhaled DU aerosols arising from penetrator impact on armored vehicles.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aerosols / chemistry*
  • Air Pollutants, Radioactive / chemistry*
  • Algorithms*
  • Beta Particles
  • Computer Simulation
  • Firearms*
  • Gulf War
  • Military Personnel
  • Motor Vehicles
  • New Mexico
  • Occupational Exposure / analysis*
  • Radiation Monitoring / methods*
  • Radioactive Waste / analysis
  • Risk Assessment / methods
  • Risk Factors
  • Solubility
  • Uranium / chemistry*


  • Aerosols
  • Air Pollutants, Radioactive
  • Radioactive Waste
  • Uranium