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Title: Characterization of commercial proton exchange membrane materials after exposure to beta and gamma radiation

Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) type electrolysis cells have a potential use for tritium removal and heavy water upgrading. AECL is currently exposing various commercial PEM materials to both gamma (Cobalt-60 source) and beta (tritiated water) radiation to study the effects of radiation on these materials. This paper summarizes the testing methods and results that have been collected to date. The PEM materials that are or have been exposed to radiation are: Nafion 112, 212, 117 and 1110. Membrane characterization pre- and post- exposure consists of non-destructive inspection (FTIR, SEM/XPS), mechanical (tensile strength, percentage elongation, and modulus), electrical (resistance), or chemical (ion-exchange capacity - IEC). It has appeared that the best characterization techniques to compare exposed versus unexposed membranes were IEC, ultimate tensile strength and percent elongation. These testing techniques are easy and cheap to perform. The non-destructive tests, such as SEM and FTIR did not provide particularly useful information on radiation-induced degradation. Where changes in material properties were measured after radiation exposure, they would be expected to result in poorer cell performance. However, for modest γ-radiation exposure, all membranes showed a slight decrease in cell voltage (better performance). In contrast, the one β-radiation exposed membrane did show the expected increasemore » in cell voltage. The counterintuitive trend for γ-radiation exposed membranes is not yet understood. Based on these preliminary results, it appears that γ- and β-radiation exposures have different effects.« less
Authors:
; ; ; ; ; ;  [1] ; ;  [2]
  1. Canadian Nuclear Laboratories, Chalk River, ON (Canada)
  2. Tyne Engineering Inc., Burlington, ON (Canada)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22429737
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Fusion Science and Technology; Journal Volume: 67; Journal Issue: 2; Conference: TRITIUM 2013: 10. International Conference on Tritium Science and Technology, Nice Acropolis (France), 21-25 Oct 2013; Other Information: Country of input: France; 7 refs.
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
07 ISOTOPES AND RADIATION SOURCES; 70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION TECHNOLOGY; ATOMIC ENERGY OF CANADA LTD; COBALT 60; ELECTRIC CONDUCTIVITY; ELECTROLYSIS; ELECTRONS; ELONGATION; FOURIER TRANSFORM SPECTROMETERS; GAMMA RADIATION; HEAVY WATER; ION EXCHANGE; MEMBRANES; NONDESTRUCTIVE TESTING; PERFORMANCE; POSITRONS; PROTONS; SCANNING ELECTRON MICROSCOPY; TENSILE PROPERTIES; TRITIUM; TRITIUM OXIDES; X-RAY PHOTOELECTRON SPECTROSCOPY