Molybdenum and Tungsten for Nuclear Fuel Processing Applications

mola_boat_110_5x4.jpgInitial processing to chemically separate and recover fissionable plutonium from irradiated nuclear fuel has changed dramatically based on today’s requirements for nuclear fuel production. Zirconium and uranium raw materials can be easily and safely converted into finished components for nuclear fuel production.

With nearly a century of powder metallurgy expertise, H.C. Starck is constantly at the forefront of technological advancement, and innovative research and development of new products together with our industry partners.

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Providing both build-to-print components and design assistance, H.C. Starck provides tungsten, molybdenum, and tantalum products to leading industries: energy, aerospace, and defense.

Molybdenum-Lanthana (MoLa) Alloys

H.C. Starck’s research team has developed and fabricated molybdenum-lanthana (MoLa) alloy components for high temperature sintering of nuclear fuels.

ODS MoLa contains lanthanum oxide (0.3 wt %, 0.6 wt. % and 1.1 wt. % lanthana) and is an oxide-dispersion strengthened material that contains a mixture of molybdenum with a very fine array or dispersion of lanthanum oxide particles. ODS MoLa has extraordinary resistance to recrystallization, improved ductility, and high-temperature formability.

These materials are applied in environments requiring dimensional stability and strength at temperatures above the capabilities of either pure molybdenum metal or TZM alloy.

As a global leader in the manufacturer of radiation shielding high density tungsten alloys, H.C. Starck offers complex-shaped components with density ranging from 17.2 to 18.5g/cc per customer design.

Tungsten Alloy Products:

K1700, K1701, K1750, K1800, K1801, K1850
HPM1700, HPM1701, HPM1750, HPM1800, HPM1801, HPM1850

Kulite® and HPM Tungsten Alloys

H.C. Starck supplies the long established Kulite® tungsten alloys from the U.S. (Table 1) and HPM tungsten alloys from Germany (Table 2).

Table 1 - Kulite® tungsten alloys (K1700 thru K1850)

Alloy
Designation

K1700
K1701
K1750
K1800
K1801
K1850
Tungsten content
(%)
(%)
90
90
92.5
95
95
97
Density
(g/cm3)
17
17
17.5
18
18
18.5

(lb/in3)
0.61
0.61
0.63
0.65
0.65
0.67
Hardness
(Rc)
23
22
24
25
24
26
Ultimate Tensile Strength
(psi)
125,000
110,000
125,000
125,000
110,000
120,000

(N/mm2)
860
760
860
860
760
830
Yield Strength
(psi)
85,000
80,000
90,000
90,000
85,000
95,000

(N/mm2)
590
550
620
620
590
660
Elongation
(% in 1 inch)
12
4
10
8
2
6
Modulus of Elasticity
(psi x 106)
45
40
46
48
45
50

(kN/mm2)
310
280
320
330
310
345
Magnetic Properties

slight
none
slight
slight
none
slight
Magnetic Permeability
(µ)
>1.05
<1.05
>1.05
>1.05
<1.05
>1.05
Thermal Expansion Coefficient
(x10-6/oC)(20oC-500oC)
5.1
5.4
4.9
4.8
5.0
4.8
Thermal Conductivity
(cgs)
.20
.23
.24
.27
.32
0.26
Electrical Conductivity
(% IACS)
11
14
12
15
16
16
MIL-T-21014(D)
class
1
1
2
3
3
4
ASTM B777
class
1
1
2
3
3
4

Exceeds requirements of the following specifications: MIL-T-21014, ASTM B777 and AMS 7725.

Table 2 - HPM tungsten alloys

Typical properties of tungsten composite materials

Inspection
criterion

HPM
1700
HPM
1710
HPM
1701
HPM
1705
HPM
1750
HPM
1750
sheet
Tungsten content
%
90.0
90.0
90.0
90.0
92.5
92.5
Density
g/cm³
17.0 ± 0.2
17.0 ± 0.2
17.0 ± 0.2
17.3 ± 0.2
17.5 ± 0.2
17.6 ± 0.2
Hardness
HV 30
≤ 320
≤ 320
≤ 320
≤ 360
≤ 325
≤ 460
Tensile strength
(typical value)
MPa
850
850
670
900
840
870
Minimal yield strengt
MPa
520
520
520
520
520
520
Elongation
(typical value)
%
12
12
3
8
14
16
Young’s modulus
(average value)
GPa
320
320
300
330
340
340
Median coefficient of linear thermal expansion
20 – 100 °C
10-6/K
6.1
6.3
6.0
4.5
5.5
5.5
20 – 300 °C
10-6/K
6.2
6.5
6.2
5.1
5.7
5.7
20 – 450 °C
10-6/K
6.3
6.6
6.4
5.3
5.8
5.8
Thermal conductivity
W/mK
≥70
≥70
≥90
≥70
≥75
≥75
Electrical conductivity (average value)
%IACS
MS/m
11
6.4
11
6.4
14
8.1
13
7.5
12
6.9
12
6.9
Specific electrical resistance
(average value)
µΩm

0.16
0.16
0.12
0.13
0.15
0.15
Permeability µ

> 1.05
> 1.05
< 1.05
> 1.05
> 1.05
> 1.05


Inspection criterion

HPM 1751
HPM 1760
HPM 1800
HPM 1810
HPM 1801
HPM 1850
HPM 1850W
Tungsten content
%
92.5
92.5
95.0
95.0
95.0
97.0
97.0
Density
g/cm³
17.5 ± 0.2
17.6 ± 0.2
18.0 ± 0.2
18.0 ± 0.2
18.0 ± 0.2
18.5 ± 0.2
18.5 ± 0.2
Hardness
HV 30
≤ 325
≤ 325
≤ 332
≤ 332
≤ 332
≤ 340
≤ 340
Tensile strength
(typical value)
MPa
690
870
830
830
700
830
890
Minimal yield strengt
MPa
520
520
520
520
520
520
520
Elongation
(typical value)
%
3
16
14
14
2
12
12
Young’s modulus
(average value)
GPa
330
340
370
370
330
380
380
Median coefficient of linear thermal expansion
20 – 100 °C
10-6/K
5.7
5.5
4.9
5.2
5.4
5.1
4.8
20 – 300 °C
10-6/K
5.8
5.8
5.1
5.3
5.5
5.1
4.9
20 – 450 °C
10-6/K
5.9
5.9
5.2
5.5
5.6
5.2
5.0
Thermal conductivity
W/mK
≥85
≥75
≥80
≥80
≥85
≥75

≥80
Electrical conductivity (average value)
%IACS
MS/m
15
8.5
12
6.9
13
7.7
13
7.7
15
9.0
16
9.3
16
9.3
Specific electrical resistance
(average value)
µΩm

0.12
0.15
0.14
0.14
0.11
0.10
0.10
Permeability µ

< 1.05
> 1.05
> 1.05
> 1.05
< 1.05
> 1.05
> 1.05




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