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Title: High-flux plasma exposure of ultra-fine grain tungsten

Here we examine the response of an ultra-fine grained (UFG) tungsten material to high-flux deuterium plasma exposure. UFG tungsten has received considerable interest as a possible plasma-facing material in magnetic confinement fusion devices, in large part because of its improved resistance to neutron damage. However, optimization of the material in this manner may lead to trade-offs in other properties. Moreover, we address two aspects of the problem in this work: (a) how high-flux plasmas modify the structure of the exposed surface, and (b) how hydrogen isotopes become trapped within the material. The specific UFG tungsten considered here contains 100 nm-width Ti dispersoids (1 wt%) that limit the growth of the W grains to a median size of 960 nm. Metal impurities (Fe, Cr) as well as O were identified within the dispersoids; these species were absent from the W matrix. To simulate relevant particle bombardment conditions, we exposed specimens of the W-Ti material to low energy (100 eV), high-flux (> 10 22 m -2 s -1) deuterium plasmas in the PISCES-A facility at the University of California, San Diego. To explore different temperature-dependent trapping mechanisms, we considered a range of exposure temperatures between 200 °C and 500 °C. For comparison,more » we also exposed reference specimens of conventional powder metallurgy warm-rolled and ITER-grade tungsten at 300 °C. Post-mortem focused ion beam profiling and atomic force microscopy of the UFG tungsten revealed no evidence of near-surface bubbles containing high pressure D2 gas, a common surface degradation mechanism associated with plasma exposure. Thermal desorption spectrometry indicated moderately higher trapping of D in the material compared with the reference specimens, though still within the spread of values for different tungsten grades found in the literature database. Finally, for the criteria considered here, these results do not indicate any significant obstacles to the potential use of UFG tungsten as a plasma-facing material, although further experimental work is needed to assess material response to transient events and high plasma fluence.« less
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [3] ;  [4] ;  [4] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-CA), Livermore, CA (United States)
  2. Univ. of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA (United States)
  3. Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT (United States)
  4. Shizuoka Univ., Shizuoka (Japan)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 0263-4368; PII: S0263436815303334
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
International Journal of Refractory and Hard Metals
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: International Journal of Refractory and Hard Metals; Journal ID: ISSN 0263-4368
Research Org:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-CA), Livermore, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
Country of Publication:
United States
OSTI Identifier:
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1359210