Application of Thermodynamic and Kinetic Parameters of the V-O-Na System to the Sodium Corrosion of Vanadium-Base Alloys
The compatibility problem with liquid sodium is the primary limitation for the use of vanadium-base alloys as a fuel cladding in a sodium-cooled fast-breeder reactor. While there is considerable disagreement in the reported corrosion behavior of candidate alloys,(1–4) the importance of nonmetallic impurities (O, N, H, and C) in sodium on the predominant corrosion processes is generally recognized. Much of the disagreement can be attributed to the inability to measure these impurities with the required degree of accuracy. The oxygen concentrations in sodium frequently encountered in experimental systems that are used in corrosion studies are too low to be measured accurately by present chemical methods (e.g., mercury amalgamation and vacuum distillation). Furthermore, oxygen concentrations determined from Na2O solubility data at cold-trap temperatures are often inaccurate because of 1) oxide depletion from the cold trap to a value below the equilibrium solubility, 2) insufficient rate of supply of oxygen to the main loop from a bypass cold trap, and 3) a nonequilibrium oxygen concentration in sodium with respect to Na2O saturation at the temperature of the cold trap.
KeywordsOxygen Concentration Distribution Coefficient Cold Trap Oxide Film Formation Oxygen Solution
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