Oxidative corrosion of spent UO{sub 2} fuel in vapor and dripping groundwater at 90{degree}C.

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Corrosion of spent UO{sub 2} fuel has been studied in experiments conducted for nearly six years. Oxidative dissolution in vapor and dripping groundwater at 90 C occurs via general corrosion at fuel-fragment surfaces. Dissolution along fuel-grain boundaries is also evident in samples contacted by the largest volumes of groundwater, and corroded grain boundaries extend at least 20 or 30 grains deep (> 200 {micro}m), possibly throughout millimeter-sized fragments. Apparent dissolution of fuel along defects that intersect grain boundaries has created dissolution pits that are 50 to 200 nm in diameter. Dissolution pits penetrate 1-2 {micro}m into each grain, producing a ... continued below

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11 p.

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Finch, R. J. April 29, 1999.

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Corrosion of spent UO{sub 2} fuel has been studied in experiments conducted for nearly six years. Oxidative dissolution in vapor and dripping groundwater at 90 C occurs via general corrosion at fuel-fragment surfaces. Dissolution along fuel-grain boundaries is also evident in samples contacted by the largest volumes of groundwater, and corroded grain boundaries extend at least 20 or 30 grains deep (> 200 {micro}m), possibly throughout millimeter-sized fragments. Apparent dissolution of fuel along defects that intersect grain boundaries has created dissolution pits that are 50 to 200 nm in diameter. Dissolution pits penetrate 1-2 {micro}m into each grain, producing a ''worm-like'' texture along fuel-grain-boundaries. Sub-micrometer-sized fuel shards are common between fuel grains and may contribute to the reactive surface area of fuel exposed to groundwater. Outer surfaces of reacted fuel fragments develop a fine-grained layer of corrosion products adjacent to the fuel (5-15 {micro}m thick). A more coarsely crystalline layer of corrosion products commonly covers the fine-grained layer, the thickness of which varies considerably among samples (from less than 5 {micro}m to greater than 40 {micro}m). The thickest and most porous corrosion layers develop on fuel fragments exposed to the largest volumes of groundwater. Corrosion-layer compositions depend strongly on water flux, with uranyl oxy-hydroxides predominating in vapor experiments, and alkali and alkaline earth uranyl silicates predominating in high drip-rate experiments. Low drip-rate experiments exhibit a complex assemblage of corrosion products, including phases identified in vapor and high drip-rate experiments.

Physical Description

11 p.

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INIS; OSTI as DE00010871

Medium: P; Size: 11 pages

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  • MRS 1998 Fall Meeting, Boston, MA (US), 11/30/1998--12/04/1998

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  • Report No.: ANL/CMT/CP-96766
  • Grant Number: W-31109-ENG-38
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 10871
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc624047

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  • April 29, 1999

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • June 16, 2015, 7:43 a.m.

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  • April 6, 2017, 7:33 p.m.

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Finch, R. J. Oxidative corrosion of spent UO{sub 2} fuel in vapor and dripping groundwater at 90{degree}C., article, April 29, 1999; Illinois. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc624047/: accessed October 16, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.