Inert matrices for the transmutation of actinides: fabrication, thermal properties and radiation stability of ceramic materials
Ceramic binary or ternary compounds were tested for their suitability to serve as inert matrices for transmutation of the minor actinides neptunium and americium, (ie to achieve a reduction in their quantities by irradiation in nuclear reactors without formation of new actinides from the matrix). Five materials were selected and produced without and with (241) americium. Special emphasis was put on the characterization of the materials' structure and the measurement of thermal properties. Irradiation damage was investigated by ion implantation experiments and X-ray diffraction measurements were performed on specimens as a basis for evaluating lattice parameter changes during self-irradiation by alpha-decay in future experiments. In addition, ceramic samples containing 20 weight-% uranium dioxide were produced to demonstrate that matrix materials can accept large amounts of an oxide similar to americium oxide. Thermodynamic data were collected to calculate Delta G (reaction)-curves and phase diagrams. Structural, thermal and thermodynamic aspects of all selected matrices, and the reasons for their selection are discussed.
Bibliographic Reference: Paper presented: Actinides '97, Baden-Baden (DE), September 21-26, 1997
Availability: Available from (1) as Paper EN 40583 ORA
Record Number: 199810041 / Last updated on: 1998-02-03
Original language: en
Available languages: en