Formation and corrosion of a 410 SS/ceramic composite.
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This study addressed the possible use of alloy/ceramic composite waste forms to immobilize metallic and oxide waste streams generated during the electrochemical reprocessing of spent reactor fuel using a single waste form. A representative composite material was made to evaluate the microstructure and corrosion behavior at alloy/ceramic interfaces by reacting 410 stainless steel with Zr, Mo, and a mixture of lanthanide oxides. Essentially all of the available Zr reacted with lanthanide oxides to generate lanthanide zirconates, which combined with the unreacted lanthanide oxides to form a porous ceramic network that filled with alloy to produce a composite puck. Alloy present in excess of the pore volume of the ceramic generated a metal bead on top of the puck. The alloys in the composite and forming the bead were both mixtures of martensite grains and ferrite grains bearing carbide precipitates; FeCrMo intermetallic phases also precipitated at ferrite grain boundaries within the composite puck. Micrometer-thick regions of ferrite surrounding the carbides were sensitized and corroded preferentially in electrochemical tests. The lanthanide oxides dissolved chemically, but the lanthanide zirconates did not dissolve and are suitable host phases. The presence of oxide phases did not affect corrosion of the neighboring alloy phases.
Grain boundaries; Interfaces
Nuclear fuel reprocessing