Description: Interdiffusion and microstructural development in the U-Mo-Al system was examined using solid-tosolid diffusion couples consisting of U-7wt.%Mo, U-10wt.%Mo and U-12wt.%Mo vs. pure Al, annealed at 600°C for 24 hours. The influence of Si alloying addition (up to 5 wt.%) in Al on the interdiffusion microstructural development was also examined using solid-to-solid diffusion couples consisting of U-7wt.%Mo, U-10wt.%Mo and U-12wt.%Mo vs. pure Al, Al-2wt.%Si, and Al-5wt.%Si annealed at 550°C up to 20 hours. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and electron probe microanalysis (EPMA) were employed to examine the development of a very fine multiphase intermetallic layer. In ternary U-Mo-Al diffusion couples annealed at 600°C for 24 hours, interdiffusion microstructure varied of finely dispersed UAl3, UAl4, U6Mo4Al43, and UMo2Al20 phases while the average composition throughout the interdiffusion zone remained constant at approximately 80 at.% Al. Interdiffusion microstructure observed by SEM/TEM analyses and diffusion paths drawn from concentration profiles determined by EPMA appear to deviate from the assumption of “local thermodynamic equilibrium,” and suggest that interdiffusion occurs via supersaturated UAl4 followed by equilibrium transformation into UAl3, U6Mo4Al43, UAl4 and UMo2Al20 phases. Similar observation was made for U-Mo vs. Al diffusion couples annealed at 550°C. The addition of Si (up to 5 wt.%) in Al significantly reduced the thickness of the intermetallic layer by changing the constituent phases of the interdiffusion zone developed in U-Mo vs. Al-Si diffusion couples. Specifically, the formation of (U,Mo)(Al,Si)3 with relatively large solubility for Mo and Si, along with UMo2Al20 phases was observed along with disappearance of U6Mo4Al43 and UAl4 phases. Simplified understanding based on U-Al, U-Si, and Mo-Si binary phase diagrams is discussed in the light of the beneficial effect of Si alloying addition.
Date: November 1, 2009
Creator: D. D. Keiser, Jr.; Perez, E.; Yao, B. & Sohn, Y. H.
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