Carbon-14 release and speciation from carbon steel in highly alkaline conditions

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Abstract

The release and the speciation of carbon species from irradiated JRQ carbon steel samples, representative of the reactor pressure vessel of Belgian nuclear power plants, were studied in a saturated portlandite aqueous solution, relevant for the Belgian Supercontainer design, as perceived for the geological disposal of high-level nuclear waste. To achieve this, we performed simple immersion and potentiostatic corrosion tests. In addition, the corrosion rate (which determines the 14C release) was estimated by measuring the release of 60Co. Gas chromatography showed that during the static corrosion test, the carbonaceous species methane, carbon dioxide, ethene, and ethane were produced. Under the hypothesis that all the carbon released from the JRQ steel was transformed into carbon-base gaseous compounds, this corresponds to a corrosion rate of approximately 100 nm/yr, which is in good agreement with literature data.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1683–1690
Number of pages8
JournalRadiocarbon
Volume60
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2018
Event2018 - CAST Final Symposium - Lyon, France

Keywords

  • carbon-14, carbon steel, corrosion, speciation, nuclear waste disposal

ID: 5374735