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Synthesis, characterisation and preliminary corrosion behaviour assessment of simulant Fukushima nuclear accident fuel debris

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  24 January 2020

Clémence Gausse*
Affiliation:
NucleUS Immobilisation Science Laboratory, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, The University of Sheffield, United Kingdom
Calum W. Dunlop
Affiliation:
NucleUS Immobilisation Science Laboratory, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, The University of Sheffield, United Kingdom
Aidan A. Friskney
Affiliation:
NucleUS Immobilisation Science Laboratory, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, The University of Sheffield, United Kingdom
Martin C. Stennett
Affiliation:
NucleUS Immobilisation Science Laboratory, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, The University of Sheffield, United Kingdom
Neil C. Hyatt
Affiliation:
NucleUS Immobilisation Science Laboratory, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, The University of Sheffield, United Kingdom
Claire L. Corkhill
Affiliation:
NucleUS Immobilisation Science Laboratory, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, The University of Sheffield, United Kingdom
*Corresponding
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Abstract

Nuclear fuel debris generated at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant during the loss of coolant accident in 2011, still resides within the reactor units, constantly cooled by water. Until it is retrieved, the fuel debris will corrode, releasing radioactive elements into the coolant water and the ground surrounding the reactors. To predict the corrosion behaviour of these materials, and to establish parameters for experiments with U-containing and real fuel debris, the corrosion of two surrogate fuel debris materials, with a composition of Ce(1-x)ZrxO2 (x = 0.2 and 0.4), was investigated. Materials were synthesised by a wet chemistry route and pellets were sintered at 1700°C in air atmosphere. Due to the slow corrosion kinetics, aggressive conditions were applied, and corrosion experiments were performed in 9 mol.L-1 HNO3 under static conditions. The incorporation of Zr into the structure of Ce reduced the normalised dissolution rate; from (3.75 ± 0.15) × 10-6 g.m-2.d-1 to (4.96 ± 0.28) × 10-6 g.m-2.d-1 for RL(Ce) of Ce0.8Zr0.2O2 and Ce0.6Zr0.4O2, respectively.

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Articles
Copyright
Copyright © Materials Research Society 2020

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Synthesis, characterisation and preliminary corrosion behaviour assessment of simulant Fukushima nuclear accident fuel debris
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