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Title: Radiation-Induced Changes in Quartz, A Mineral Analog of Nuclear Power Plant Concrete Aggregates

Quartz single-crystal samples consisting of α-quartz crystal structure were neutron irradiated to fluences of 5 × 10 18, 4 × 10 19, and 2 × 10 20 n/cm 2 (E > 0.1 MeV) at two temperatures (52 and 95 °C). The changes in the α-quartz phase as a function of these two conditions (temperature and fluence) were studied using X-ray powder diffraction (XRD), Raman spectroscopy, and transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and the results acquired using these complementary techniques are presented in a single place for the first time. XRD studies showed that the lattice parameters of α-quartz increased with increasing neutron flux. The lattice growth was larger for the samples that were neutron irradiated at 52 °C than at 95 °C. Moreover, an amorphous content was determined in the quartz samples neutron irradiated at 4 × 10 19 n/cm 2, with the greater amount being in the 52 °C irradiated sample. Complete amorphization of quartz was observed at a fluence of 2 × 10 20 n/cm 2 (E > 0.1 MeV) using XRD and confirmed by TEM characterization and Raman spectroscopic studies. In conclusion, the cause for α-quartz lattice expansion and sample amorphization was also explored using XRD and Ramanmore » spectroscopic studies.« less
ORCiD logo [1] ; ORCiD logo [1] ;  [2]
  1. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Materials Science & Technology Division
  2. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). Nuclear Security and Isotope Technology Division; Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States). Bredesen Center for Interdisciplinary Research and Graduate Education
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Inorganic Chemistry
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 57; Journal Issue: 6; Journal ID: ISSN 0020-1669
American Chemical Society (ACS)
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Nuclear Energy (NE)
Country of Publication:
United States
OSTI Identifier: