Étude du comportement du stéarate du zinc en température et sous irradiation - impact sur les propriétés de lubrification

Abstract : The manufacturing of nuclear fuels UO2-30%PuO2 for the Gen IV nuclear reactors is based on the use of plutonium coming from MOX (Mixed OXides) fuel recycling from actual reactor. This plutonium would contain a few quantities of fissionable isotopes and a significant amount (x30) of 238Pu compared to initial Pu. This isotope possesses a strong alpha activity and a great thermal power. The manufacturing process which consists in powders pressing will use zinc stearate, an additive used as lubricant. The aim of this PhD is to study the behaviour in temperature and under irradiation of this compound. An effect of temperature increasing and thermal ageing has been observed on crystallographic properties with a material amorphisation and a deterioration of lubricant properties from 110°C. Radiolytic degradation of zinc stearate has been studied through the analysis of gases produced by alpha radiation at the contact of PuO2 powders or by external radiation by helions, with the support of chemical analysis of irradiated solid. Gaz production yields are calculated and enable establishment of a radiolysis mechanism. It has been showed that impact of radiolysis on lubricant properties is less important than temperature effect. The coupling of degradations has a synergic effect, with a deterioration of lubricant properties observed at lower temperature compared to non-irradiated material. From these results, recommendations for use of zinc stearate have been proposed.
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Jérémy Gracia. Étude du comportement du stéarate du zinc en température et sous irradiation - impact sur les propriétés de lubrification. Mécanique des matériaux [physics.class-ph]. Ecole nationale supérieure d'arts et métiers - ENSAM, 2017. Français. ⟨NNT : 2017ENAM0028⟩. ⟨tel-01800050⟩

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