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Title: Surface Erosion of Plasma-Facing Materials Using an Electrothermal Plasma Source and Ion Beam Micro-Trenches

Abstract

Erosion characteristics of tungsten-alternative plasma-facing materials (PFMs) were tested under high heat flux conditions in the electrothermal plasma source facility at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The PFMs of interest are high-purity β-3C chemical vapor deposition silicon carbide (SiC) and the MAX phases Ti 3SiC 2 and Ti 2AlC [MAX = chemical formula M n+1AX n, where M is an early transition metal (such as Ti or Ta), A is an A-group element (such as Si or Al), and X is carbon or nitrogen]. Additionally, an erosion analysis method was developed using a combination of focused ion beam microscopy and scanning electron microscopy, carving micro-trench geometries into polished sample surfaces. Samples of SiC, Ti 3SiC 2, and Ti 2AlC were exposed to the electrothermal plasma source alongside tungsten and monocrystalline silicon. Samples were exposed to a Lexan polycarbonate (C 16H 14O 3) electrothermal plasma stream in a He environment, at a specified impact angle, with infrared camera diagnostics. Edge localized mode–relevant heat fluxes of 0.9 to 1 GW/m 2 over 1-ms discharges were generated on the target surfaces. Tungsten samples exhibited pronounced melt-layer formation and deformation, with measured molten pits 2 to 10 μm in diameter and melt-layer depths of upmore » to 7 μm deep. Surface erosion rates for Ti 3SiC 2 and Ti 2AlC ranged from 80 to 775 μm/s and 85 to 470 μm/s, respectively. Both MAX phases exhibited extreme surface fracture and material ejection, with damage depths past 4 μm for Ti 2AlC and 11 μm for Ti 3SiC 2. Lastly, SiC displayed the best performance, in one case surviving 15 consecutive electrothermal plasma exposures with an average erosion rate of about 29 μm/s and no surface fracturing. SiC erosion rates ranged from 23 to 128 μm/s.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [2]; ORCiD logo [2]; ORCiD logo [2]; ORCiD logo [2]; ORCiD logo [3]; ORCiD logo [1]
  1. North Carolina State Univ., Raleigh, NC (United States)
  2. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
  3. Drexel Univ., Philadelphia, PA (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Fusion Energy Sciences (FES) (SC-24)
OSTI Identifier:
1528684
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC05-00OR22725
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Fusion Science and Technology
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: Fusion Science and Technology; Journal ID: ISSN 1536-1055
Publisher:
American Nuclear Society
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; 70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION TECHNOLOGY; Plasma-facing material; ion beam; MAX phase ceramics; silicon carbide; erosion

Citation Formats

Coburn, Jonathan D., Gebhart, T. E., Parish, Chad M., Unterberg, Ezekial, Canik, John, Barsoum, M W., and Bourham, Mohamed. Surface Erosion of Plasma-Facing Materials Using an Electrothermal Plasma Source and Ion Beam Micro-Trenches. United States: N. p., 2019. Web. doi:10.1080/15361055.2019.1623570.
Coburn, Jonathan D., Gebhart, T. E., Parish, Chad M., Unterberg, Ezekial, Canik, John, Barsoum, M W., & Bourham, Mohamed. Surface Erosion of Plasma-Facing Materials Using an Electrothermal Plasma Source and Ion Beam Micro-Trenches. United States. doi:10.1080/15361055.2019.1623570.
Coburn, Jonathan D., Gebhart, T. E., Parish, Chad M., Unterberg, Ezekial, Canik, John, Barsoum, M W., and Bourham, Mohamed. Wed . "Surface Erosion of Plasma-Facing Materials Using an Electrothermal Plasma Source and Ion Beam Micro-Trenches". United States. doi:10.1080/15361055.2019.1623570.
@article{osti_1528684,
title = {Surface Erosion of Plasma-Facing Materials Using an Electrothermal Plasma Source and Ion Beam Micro-Trenches},
author = {Coburn, Jonathan D. and Gebhart, T. E. and Parish, Chad M. and Unterberg, Ezekial and Canik, John and Barsoum, M W. and Bourham, Mohamed},
abstractNote = {Erosion characteristics of tungsten-alternative plasma-facing materials (PFMs) were tested under high heat flux conditions in the electrothermal plasma source facility at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The PFMs of interest are high-purity β-3C chemical vapor deposition silicon carbide (SiC) and the MAX phases Ti3SiC2 and Ti2AlC [MAX = chemical formula Mn+1AXn, where M is an early transition metal (such as Ti or Ta), A is an A-group element (such as Si or Al), and X is carbon or nitrogen]. Additionally, an erosion analysis method was developed using a combination of focused ion beam microscopy and scanning electron microscopy, carving micro-trench geometries into polished sample surfaces. Samples of SiC, Ti3SiC2, and Ti2AlC were exposed to the electrothermal plasma source alongside tungsten and monocrystalline silicon. Samples were exposed to a Lexan polycarbonate (C16H14O3) electrothermal plasma stream in a He environment, at a specified impact angle, with infrared camera diagnostics. Edge localized mode–relevant heat fluxes of 0.9 to 1 GW/m2 over 1-ms discharges were generated on the target surfaces. Tungsten samples exhibited pronounced melt-layer formation and deformation, with measured molten pits 2 to 10 μm in diameter and melt-layer depths of up to 7 μm deep. Surface erosion rates for Ti3SiC2 and Ti2AlC ranged from 80 to 775 μm/s and 85 to 470 μm/s, respectively. Both MAX phases exhibited extreme surface fracture and material ejection, with damage depths past 4 μm for Ti2AlC and 11 μm for Ti3SiC2. Lastly, SiC displayed the best performance, in one case surviving 15 consecutive electrothermal plasma exposures with an average erosion rate of about 29 μm/s and no surface fracturing. SiC erosion rates ranged from 23 to 128 μm/s.},
doi = {10.1080/15361055.2019.1623570},
journal = {Fusion Science and Technology},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {2019},
month = {6}
}

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