REVIEW OF PLUTONIUM OXIDATION LITERATURE

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A brief review of plutonium oxidation literature was conducted. The purpose of the review was to ascertain the effect of oxidation conditions on oxide morphology to support the design and operation of the PDCF direct metal oxidation (DMO) furnace. The interest in the review was due to a new furnace design that resulted in oxide characteristics that are different than those of the original furnace. Very little of the published literature is directly relevant to the DMO furnace operation, which makes assimilation of the literature data with operating conditions and data a convoluted task. The oxidation behavior can be distilled ... continued below

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Korinko, P. November 12, 2009.

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A brief review of plutonium oxidation literature was conducted. The purpose of the review was to ascertain the effect of oxidation conditions on oxide morphology to support the design and operation of the PDCF direct metal oxidation (DMO) furnace. The interest in the review was due to a new furnace design that resulted in oxide characteristics that are different than those of the original furnace. Very little of the published literature is directly relevant to the DMO furnace operation, which makes assimilation of the literature data with operating conditions and data a convoluted task. The oxidation behavior can be distilled into three regimes, a low temperature regime (RT to 350 C) with a relatively slow oxidation rate that is influenced by moisture, a moderate temperature regime (350-450 C) that is temperature dependent and relies on more or less conventional oxidation growth of a partially protective oxide scale, and high temperature oxidation (> 500 C) where the metal autocatalytically combusts and oxidizes. The particle sizes obtained from these three regimes vary with the finest being from the lowest temperature. It is surmised that the slow growth rate permits significant stress levels to be achieved that help break up the oxides. The intermediate temperatures result in a fairly compact scale that is partially protective and that grows to critical thickness prior to fracturing. The growth rate in this regime may be parabolic or paralinear, depending on the oxidation time and consequently the oxide thickness. The high temperature oxidation is invariant in quiescent or nearly quiescent conditions due to gas blanketing while it accelerates with temperature under flowing conditions. The oxide morphology will generally consist of fine particles (<15 {micro}m), moderately sized particles (15 < x < 250 {micro}m) and large particles (> 250 {micro}m). The particle size ratio is expected to be < 5%, 25%, and 70% for fine, medium and large particles, respectively, for metal temperatures in the 500-600 C range.

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  • Report No.: SRNL-L7100-2009-00046R1
  • Grant Number: DE-AC09-08SR22470
  • DOI: 10.2172/968322 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 968322
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc926090

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  • November 12, 2009

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Nov. 13, 2016, 7:26 p.m.

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  • Dec. 12, 2016, 1 p.m.

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Korinko, P. REVIEW OF PLUTONIUM OXIDATION LITERATURE, report, November 12, 2009; South Carolina. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc926090/: accessed December 14, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.