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Final report to the strategic environmental research and development program on near-net shape casting of uranium-6% niobium alloys

Description: Fabrication methods traditionally used in the fabrication of depleted uranium parts within the Department of Energy (DOE) are extremely wasteful, with only 3% of the starting material actually appearing as finished product. The current effort, funded by the Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP) at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque (SNLA), and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), was conceived as a means to drastically reduce this inefficiency and the accompanying waste by demonstrating the technology to cast simple parts close to their final shape in molds made from a variety of materials. As a part of this coordinated study, LLNL was given, and has achieved, two primary objectives: (1) to demonstrate the feasibility of using refractory metal for reusable molds in the production of castings of uranium-6 wt% niobium alloy (U-6Nb); and (2) to demonstrate the utility of detailed simulations of thermal and fluid flow characteristics in the understanding and improvement of the near-net shape casting process. In both cases, our efforts were focused on a flat plate castings, which serve as simple prototypical parts. This report summarizes the results of LLNL work in each area.
Date: January 1996
Creator: Gourdin, W. H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Clean Assembly Practices to Prevent Contamination and Damage to Optics

Description: A key lesson learned from the earliest optics installed in the National Ignition Facility (NIF) was that the traditional approach for maintaining cleanliness, such as the use of cleanrooms and associated garments and protocols, is inadequate. Assembly activities often negate the benefits provided by cleanrooms, and in fact generate contamination with high damage potential. As a result, NIF introduced ''clean assembly protocols'' and related practices to supplement the traditional clean room protocols. These new protocols included ''clean-as-you-go'' activities and regular bright light inspections. Introduction of these new protocols has greatly reduced the particle contamination found on more recently installed optics. In this paper we will describe the contamination mechanisms we have observed and the details of the clean assembly protocols we have successfully introduced to mitigate them.
Date: December 19, 2005
Creator: Pryatel, J & Gourdin, W H
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Use of Lubricants in the NIF

Description: There are two principal concerns that govern the use of lubricants in NIF: (1) Airborne molecular contaminants (AMCs)--AMCs are known to seriously degrade the performance of sol-gel coated optics. AMCs are produced by the slow outgassing of residues (non-volatile residues or ''NVRs'') of high molecular weight compounds left on surfaces. Lubricants, particularly hydrocarbon lubricants, are a primary source of such NVRs. (2) Particulates--Particulates that accumulate on optical surfaces can cause permanent physical damage when exposed to high energy density laser light. Lubricant residues exposed to high energy density light will pyrolyze or decompose and produce carbon particulates. The NIF Approved Materials Database lists several lubricants that have been tested for use in NIF environments. Many of these lubricants were tested according to MELs 99-006 (oven outgassing test) or 99-007 (vacuum outgassing test). In these tests, the change in percent transmission of light through a sol-gel coated optic placed next to the sample under evaluation is used as the diagnostic. Samples that cause less than 0.1% change in optical transmission are deemed suitable for use inside beam enclosures. This testing, however, addresses only the concern associated with AMCs. To assess the issue of particle generation, a flashlamp or ''aerosol'' test is used. In this test a sample with residues is subjected to intense light from the main amplifier flashlamps. The number density of particles per unit volume is measure after each flash. A measurement of an average of fewer than 1000 particles >0.5{micro}m in diameter produced per square foot of exposed surface per flash for each of the last ten flashes in a series of 60 flashes of light is deemed to be acceptable for polymers. A measurement of an average of fewer than 100 particles >0.5{micro}m in diameter produced per square foot of exposed surface per flash for each of ...
Date: July 6, 2006
Creator: Gourdin, W & Biltoft, P
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Multiple mechanisms of thermally activated plastic flow in shocked and unshocked tantalum. Revision 1

Description: We argue that the principal features of the plastic flow behavior of Ta can be described a model that incorporates a two-component Peierls-type mechanism and an ``obstacle`` mechanism in series. We compare results of calculations based on such a model with flow data for unalloyed Ta before and after shock loading to 45 GPa for 1.8 {mu}s. Our data suggest that the shock loading changes only structural parameters.
Date: April 22, 1996
Creator: Gourdin, W.H. & Lassila, D.H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Multiple mechanisms of thermally activated plastic flow in shocked and unshocked tantalum

Description: We argue that the principal features of the plastic flow behavior of tantalum can be described by a model that incorporates a two-component Peierls-type mechanism and an {open_quotes}obstacle{close_quotes} mechanism in series. We compare the results of calculations based on such a model with flow data for unalloyed tantalum before and after shock loading to 38 GPa for 1 {mu}s. Our data suggest that the shock loading changes only structural parameters.
Date: April 22, 1996
Creator: Gourdin, W.H. & Lassila, D.H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Multiple mechanisms in the thermally activated plastic flow of tantalum

Description: We argue that many of the features of the plastic flow behavior of tantalum can be described by a model that incorporates a two-component Peierls-type mechanism and an fcc-like obstacle mechanism in series. We compare the results of calculations based on such a model with flow data for unalloyed tantalum over a wide range of strain rates and a modest range of temperatures.
Date: June 27, 1995
Creator: Gourdin, W.H. & Lassila, D.H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Shock-induced melting and rapid solidification

Description: Model calculations are presented to estimate that approx.50 GPa is required to completely shock melt metal powders with quenching at rates up to 10/sup 8/ K/s. Experiments are discussed for powders of a Cu-Zr alloy compacted in the usual way at 16 GPa and melted by shocking to 60 GPa. 12 refs.
Date: August 1, 1987
Creator: Nellis, W.J.; Gourdin, W.H. & Maple, M.B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Radiation Induced Stress Relaxation in Silicone and Polyurethane Elastomers

Description: Many different materials are used in the National Ignition Facility, NIF, located at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, LLNL. Some of these are exposed to significant doses of ionizing radiation. Two elastomers are of special interest because they are used in sealing applications with long expected lifetimes. These are LPU4, a polyurethane formulated at LLNL, and Dow Corning DC93-500, a silicone RTV elastomer. In 2004 a program to determine the impact of ionizing radiation on the stress relaxation and compression set characteristics of these two elastomers was undertaken. Since the materials are used in continuous compression and must reliably seal, the primary test utilized was a stress relaxation test. This test provides insight into the ability of a seal to remain functional in a static seal. The test determines how much residual force remains after a certain period of time under compression. The temperature and absorbed radiation dose can dramatically impact this property. In this study the only independent environmental variable studied is the effect of radiation at ambient temperatures. Two levels of radiation exposure were studied, 1 MRad, and 10 MRad. One of the independent test parameters is the compression deflection during storage and in this test the value used was 25%. The need for a compression retention mechanism ruled out radiation exposure in the compressed direction since the high atomic number materials for that device would block the radiation. Therefore, an annular ring was chosen for the specimen shape. The procedures are, as closely as possible, based on ASTM D 6147-97. Since the data is readily obtained at the end of the stress relaxation test, the samples were also evaluated for compression set. Compression set is the essentially permanent deformation incurred in a seal after the seal is compressed for some period of time and then unloaded. Though this ...
Date: August 22, 2007
Creator: Spellman, G; Gourdin, W; Jensen, W; Pearson, M & Fine, I
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Mechanical engineering note - safety analysis of molten uranium/water interaction in the uranium foundry furnace

Description: This Engineering Note describes the development of the accident criteria used the basis for the design of the uranium foundry vacuum vessel. The results of this analysis provide input into other safety notes that investigate how well the uranium containment boundary will maintain its integrity during the design basis accident. The preventative measures that have been designed into the system to minimize the potential to produce a flammable gas mixture are described. The system response is designed for consistency with applicable sections of the LLNL Health and Safety Manual, as well as the Mechanical engineering Safety Design Standards.
Date: August 19, 1999
Creator: Gourdin, W H & Sze, J
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Boron and hydrogen in Ni{sub 3}Al: Part 2, Mechanical testing of bicrystals

Description: To provide a sensitive measurement of the effect of boron segregation on the strength and ductility of Ni{sub 3}Al grain boundaries, bicrystal tensile tests were performed on small specimens of boron doped Ni{sub 76}Al{sub 24} cut from extremely large-grained boules. Five specimens with the same ``random`` or low-symmetry grain boundary (disorientations measured by means of backscattered Kikuchi patterns) and two specimens with a second random grain boundary were tested in quenched and slow-cooled conditions. Duplicate tests performed in a low (7 ppM) water-vapor environment showed that the fracture mode and the stress and strain at fracture are altered by environmental embrittlement at individual, partially strengthened grain boundaries.
Date: January 4, 1994
Creator: Johnson, P. E.; Gourdin, W.; Gonis, A.; Kioussis, N. & Vaudin, M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The influence of tungsten alloying on the mechanical properties of tantalum

Description: In mechanical tests of tantalum-tungsten alloys with nominal tungsten contents between 0 and 10 wt % for strain rates between 0.000016 and 6800s{sup {minus}1} and temperatures between 77 and 400 K, the addition of tungsten noticeably reduces the strain-rate dependence of the flow stress of tantalum near yield. It also subtly alters the strain-rate behavior of the work hardening, making it more like that of copper, an fcc metal. These effects are reflected in the limiting strains for uniform plastic deformation calculated from our flow curves. For unalloyed tantalum, the instability strain appears to drop dramatically for strain rates in excess of approximately 0.005s{sup {minus}1}, whereas for tungsten bearing alloys, it remains unchanged or increases slightly. Tungsten alloys may therefore be preferable to unalloyed tantalum in applications that demand substantial ductility at high rates of strain. We briefly discuss possible mechanisms for plastic flow in tantalum and how they might be affected by tungsten additions to produce the effects we observe.
Date: February 3, 1994
Creator: Gourdin, W. H.; Lassila, D. H.; LeBlanc, M. M. & Shields, A. L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Effect of boron and hydrogen on the electronic structure of Ni{sub 3}Al

Description: Using first-principles electronic structure calculations based on the Linear-Muffin-Tin Orbital (LMTO) method, we have investigated the effects of interstitial born and hydrogen on the electronic structure of the Ll{sub 2} ordered intermetallic Ni{sub 3}Al. When it occupies an octahedral interstitial site entirely coordinated by six Ni atoms, we find that boron enhances the charge distribution found in the strongly-bound ``pure`` Ni{sub 3}Al crystal: Charge is depleted at Ni and Al region. Substitution Al atoms for two of the Ni atoms coordinating the boron, however, reduces the interstitial charge density between atomic planes. In contrast to boron, hydrogen appears to deplete the interstitial charge, even when fully coordinated by Ni atoms. We suggest that these results are broadly consistent with the notion of boron as a cohesion enhancer and hydrogen as an embrittler.
Date: November 19, 1993
Creator: Kioussi, N.; Watanabe, H.; Hemker, R. G.; Gourdin, W.: Gonis, A. & Johnson, P. E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Density Changes in Plutonium Observed from Accelerated Aging Using Pu-238 Enrichment

Description: In support of Stockpile Stewardship activities, accelerated aging tests on a plutonium alloy enriched with 7.3 atomic percentage of {sup 238}Pu is underway using dilatometry at 35, 50, and 65 C and immersion density measurements of material stored at 50 C. Changes in density are expected from radiation damage in the lattice and helium in-growth. After twenty-five equivalent years of aging, the dilatometry data shows that the alloys at 35 C have expanded in volume by 0.11% to 0.12% and have started to exhibit a near linear expansion behavior primarily caused by the helium accumulation. The average He-to-vacancy ratio from tested specimens was determined to be around 2.3. The model for the lattice damage and helium in-growth accurately represents the volume swelling at 35 C. The density converted from the dilatometry corresponds well to the decreasing density trend of reference plutonium alloys as a function of time.
Date: October 19, 2005
Creator: Chung, B W; Thompson, S R; Woods, C H; Hopkins, D J; Gourdin, W H & Ebbinghaus, B B
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Impurity effects on bonding charge in Ni{sub 3}Al

Description: We have studied the effect of B and H on the charge density in Ni{sub 3}Al employing first-principles electronic structure calculations based on the FLMTO method. The changes in the electronic structure induced by B result from hybridization of d states of the nearest neighbor Ni atoms with adjacent B-{ital PP} states. Thus, boron prefers to occupy Ni-rich octahedral interstices [X(7)]. Boron greatly enhances the intraplanar metallic bonding between the Ni atoms, enhances the interplanar bonding between the NiAl layers in [001] direction, and reduces the bonding-charge directionality near the Ni(3) atoms. It is concluded that B acts to increase crystal cohesion. Hydrogen enhances the bonding-charge directionality near Ni(3) atoms and has virtually no interstitial charge enhancement, suggesting that H does not promote local cohesion. When both B and H are present, the dominant changes in the electronic structure induced by B and H seems to have little effect.
Date: May 14, 1996
Creator: Sun, Sheng N.; Kioussis, N.; Lim, Say-Peng; Gonis, A. & Gourdin, W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department