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Electron re-emission Mössbauer study of the oxidation of metallic iron in oxygen

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The results of an electron re-emission Mössbauer (ERM) spectroscopy study of the oxidation of metallic Fe at temperatures from 150 to 500°C in pure oxygen (\({\text{p}}_{{\text{O}}_{\text{2}} } \approx {\text{ }}10\) Torr) are presented. The oxidized samples were prepared from a metallic Fe sample enriched to 70% in the Mössbauer isotope Fe57 and the oxidation kinetics were determined volumetrically. Scanning electron microscopy was employed to characterize the morphology of the oxide films. The hematite, magnetite, and total-oxide thicknesses were determined from the ERM spectra using a theory recently developed in this laboratory, and the results were found to agree well with the measured oxygen content of the oxide films. For Fe and Fe-base alloys it is shown that the ERM technique is most useful in the oxide-thickness range of approximately 20–3000 Å within that range, oxide-phase identifications and thickness determinations are perhaps more readily determined by ERM spectroscopy than by any competing technique. In particular, the ERM measurement is nondestructive, and no supplementary measurements (such as surface-roughness determinations) or special sample preparations (such as oxide-film stripping) are required

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Huffman, G.P., Podgurski, H.H. Electron re-emission Mössbauer study of the oxidation of metallic iron in oxygen. Oxid Met 10, 377–401 (1976).

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Key words

  • oxidation
  • iron
  • Mössbauer
  • electron re-emission
  • ERM spectroscopy