A study of hydrogen effects on fracture behavior of radioactive waste storage tanks. Final report, October 1992--September 1994

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The processing of high-level radioactive wastes now stored at Hanford and Savannah River Laboratories will continue over many years and it will be necessary for some of the liquids to remain in the tanks until well into the next century. Continued tank integrity is therefore an issue of prime importance and it will be necessary to understand any processes which could lead to tank failure. Hydrogen embrittlement resulting from absorption of radiolytic hydrogen could alter tank fracture behavior and be an issue in evaluating the effect of stresses on the tanks from rapid chemical oxidation-reduction reactions. The intense radiation fields ... continued below

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34 p.

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Murty, K.L. & Elleman, T.S. December 31, 1994.

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Description

The processing of high-level radioactive wastes now stored at Hanford and Savannah River Laboratories will continue over many years and it will be necessary for some of the liquids to remain in the tanks until well into the next century. Continued tank integrity is therefore an issue of prime importance and it will be necessary to understand any processes which could lead to tank failure. Hydrogen embrittlement resulting from absorption of radiolytic hydrogen could alter tank fracture behavior and be an issue in evaluating the effect of stresses on the tanks from rapid chemical oxidation-reduction reactions. The intense radiation fields in some of the tanks could be a factor in increasing the hydrogen permeation rates through protective oxide films on the alloy surface and be an additional factor in contributing to embrittlement. The project was initiated in October 1992 for a two year period to evaluate hydrogen uptake in low carbon steels that are representative of storage tanks. Steel specimens were exposed to high gamma radiation fields to generate radiolytic hydrogen and to potentially alter the protective surface films to increase hydrogen uptake. Direct measurements of hydrogen uptake were made using tritium as a tracer and fracture studies were undertaken to determine any alloy embrittlement. The rates of hydrogen uptake were noted to be extremely low in the experimental steels. Gamma radiation did not reveal any significant changes in the mechanical and fracture characteristics following exposures as long as a month. It is highly desirable to investigate further the tritium diffusion under stress in a cracked body where stress-assisted diffusion is expected to enhance these rates. More importantly, since welds are the weakest locations in the steel structures, the mechanical and fracture tests should be performed on welds exposed to tritium with and without stressed crack-fronts.

Physical Description

34 p.

Notes

INIS; OSTI as DE99001288

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  • Other Information: PBD: [1994]

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  • Other: DE99001288
  • Report No.: DOE/ER/75784--T1
  • Grant Number: FG05-92ER75784
  • DOI: 10.2172/296692 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 296692
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc686195

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

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Creation Date

  • December 31, 1994

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • July 25, 2015, 2:20 a.m.

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  • Nov. 6, 2015, 8:10 p.m.

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Murty, K.L. & Elleman, T.S. A study of hydrogen effects on fracture behavior of radioactive waste storage tanks. Final report, October 1992--September 1994, report, December 31, 1994; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc686195/: accessed October 19, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.