Chemical Aspects of Molten-Fluoride-Salt Reactor Fuels

  • Lane J
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The search for a liquid for use at high temperature and low pressure in a fluid-fueled reactor led to the choice of either fluoride or chloride because of the requirement of radiation stability and solubility of appreciable quantities of uranium and thorium . The chloride (based on the Cl 137 isotope) are most suitable for fast reactor use, but the low thermal-neutron absorption cross section of fluorine makes the fluoride a uniquely desirable choice for a high-temperature fluid-fueled reactor in the thermal or epithermal neutron region. Since for most molten-salt reactor considered to date the required concentration of UF4 and ThF4 have been moderately low, the molten-salt mixtures can be considered, to a first approximation, as base or solvent salt mixture, to which the fissionable or fertile fluoride are added . For the fuel, the relatively small amount of UF4 required make the corresponding binary or ternary mixture of the diluent nearly controlling with regard to physical properties such as the melting point .

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  • James A. Lane

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