5 years ago

The role of hydrogen in zirconium alloy corrosion

The role of hydrogen in zirconium alloy corrosion
Hydrogen enters zirconium metal as a result of the corrosion process and forms hydrides when present in quantities above the solubility limit at a given temperature. Zircaloy-4 coupons of different thicknesses (0.4 mm-2.3 mm) but identical chemistry and processing were corroded in autoclave at 360 °C for various times up to 2800 days. Coupons were periodically removed and weighed to determine weight gain, which allows follow of the corrosion kinetics. Coupon thickness differences resulted in different volumetric concentrations of hydrogen, as quantified using hot vacuum extraction. The thinnest coupons, having the highest concentration of hydrogen, demonstrated acceleration in their corrosion kinetics and shorter transition times when compared to thicker coupons. Furthermore, it was seen that the post-transition corrosion rate was increased with increasing hydrogen concentration. Corrosion rates increased only after the terminal solid solubility (TSS) was exceeded for hydrogen in Zircaloy-4 at 360 °C. Therefore, it is hypothesized that the corrosion acceleration is caused by the formation of hydrides. Scanning electron microscope (SEM) examinations of fractured oxide layers demonstrate the oxide morphology changed with hydrogen content, with more equiaxed oxide grains in the high hydrogen samples than in those with lower hydrogen content. Additionally, locations of advanced oxide growth were correlated with locations of hydrides in the metal. A hypothesis is proposed to explain the accelerated corrosion due to the presence of the hydrides, namely that the metal, locally, is less able to accommodate oxide growth stresses and this leads to earlier loss of oxide protectiveness in the form of more frequent oxide kinetic transitions.

Publisher URL: www.sciencedirect.com/science

DOI: S0022311517308693

You might also like
Discover & Discuss Important Research

Keeping up-to-date with research can feel impossible, with papers being published faster than you'll ever be able to read them. That's where Researcher comes in: we're simplifying discovery and making important discussions happen. With over 19,000 sources, including peer-reviewed journals, preprints, blogs, universities, podcasts and Live events across 10 research areas, you'll never miss what's important to you. It's like social media, but better. Oh, and we should mention - it's free.

  • Download from Google Play
  • Download from App Store
  • Download from AppInChina

Researcher displays publicly available abstracts and doesn’t host any full article content. If the content is open access, we will direct clicks from the abstracts to the publisher website and display the PDF copy on our platform. Clicks to view the full text will be directed to the publisher website, where only users with subscriptions or access through their institution are able to view the full article.