Stability of Cr3C2/Cr2O3 Based Porous Ceramics in Supercritical Water

  • Author / Creator
    Dong, Ziqiang
  • This research was aimed at developing porous ceramics as well as ceramic-metal composites that can be potentially used in Gen-IV supercritical water reactors (SCWR). The research mainly includes two parts: 1) fabricating and engineering the porous ceramics and porous ceramic-metal composite; 2) Evaluating the stability of the porous ceramics in SCW environments. Reactive sintering in carbonaceous environments was used to fabricate porous Cr3C2/Cr2O3-based ceramic. A new process consisting of freeze casting and reactive sintering has also been successfully developed to fabricate highly porous Cr3C2 ceramics with multiple interconnected pores. Various amounts of cobalt powders were mixed with ceramic oxides in order to modify the porous structure and property of the porous carbide obtained by reactive sintering. The hardness of the M(Cr,Co)7C3-Co composite has been evaluated and rationalized based on the solid solution of cobalt in the ceramic phase, the composite effect of soft Co metal and the porous structure of the ceramic materials. Efforts have also been made in fabricating and evaluating interpenetrating Cr3C2-Cu composites formed by infiltrating liquid copper into porous Cr3C2. The corrosion evaluation mainly focused on assessing the stability of porous Cr3C2 and Cr2O3 under various SCW conditions. The corrosion tests showed that the porous Cr3C2 is stable in SCW at temperatures below 425°C. However, cracking and disintegrating of the porous Cr3C2 occurred when the SCW temperature increased above 425°C. Mechanisms of the corrosion attack were also investigated. The porous Cr2O3 obtained by oxidizing the porous Cr3C2 was exposed to various SCW environments. It was found that the stability of Cr2O3 was dependent on its morphology and the SCW testing conditions. Increasing SCW temperature increased the dissociation rate of the Cr2O3. Adding proper amount of Y2O3 can increase the stability of the porous Cr2O3 in SCW. It was also concluded that decreasing dissolved oxygen in SCW can increase the stability of Cr2O3 ceramics in SCW. Various advanced analytic techniques including Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), Energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS), X-ray diffraction (XRD), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and Mass spectroscopy (MS) have been used to characterize the materials involved in this research.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
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    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
  • Department
  • Specialization
    • Materials Engineering
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Zhang, Hao (Chemical and Materials Engineering)
    • Eadie, Reg (Chemical and Materials Engineering)
    • Xia, Zihui (Mechanical Engineering)
    • Han, Enhou (Institute of Metal Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences)
    • Chen, Weixing (Chemical and Materials Engineering)
    • Mitlin, David (Chemical and Materials Engineering)