Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

First Committee Member

Paul K. Forster

Second Committee Member

Balakrishnan Naduvalath

Third Committee Member

Clemens Heske

Fourth Committee Member

Venkatesan Muthukumar

Number of Pages



Separation of Kr from Xe is an important problem in spent nuclear fuel fission gas management. The energy intensive and expensive cryogenic distillation method is currently used to separate these gases. In this thesis, we have carried out the research into appropriate sorbents for the separation of Kr and Xe using pressure swing adsorption. We have examined zeolites using gas adsorption studies as they have the potential to be more cost effective than other sorbents. Zeolites are microporous aluminosilicates and have ordered pore structures. The pores in zeolites have extra-framework cations are substantially free to move. The mobility of cations and the uniformity in pore size permits the separation and removal of gases in zeolites. In our experiment, first, we have measured adsorption isotherms with same zeolitic framework but with different cations. Second, we have measured the adsorption isotherm with different zeolitic frameworks but with same cation. Using these adsorption isotherms, we have calculated the initial heats of adsorption to find out the strength of interaction between the zeolitic framework and the gases. Finally, we have compared the difference in the initial heats of adsorption to find the suitable zeolite that has the highest selectivity of Xe over Kr. In conclusion, we have found out that K LSX seems to have higher potential among the zeolites that we have compared for the separation of Kr from Xe with the differential heats of adsorption for Xe vs Kr as ~ 7.4 kJ/mol.


Gas adsorption; Gas separation; Gases – Absorption and adsorption; Gases – Separation; Gases; Rare; Krypton; Kr and Xe; Nano-materials; Nanostructured materials; Noble gases; Xenon; Zeolites


Chemistry | Inorganic Chemistry | Nanoscience and Nanotechnology | Nuclear Engineering

File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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