Silicon carbide polytype characterisation in coated fuel particles by Raman spectroscopy and 29Si magic angle spinning NMR

López-Honorato, E. and Brigden, C. T. and Shatwell, R.A. and Zhang, H. and Farnan, I. and Xiao, P. and Guillermier, P. and Somers, J. (2013) Silicon carbide polytype characterisation in coated fuel particles by Raman spectroscopy and 29Si magic angle spinning NMR. Journal of Nuclear Materials, 433 (1-3). pp. 199-205. DOI

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The silicon carbide layer of a batch of as-produced TRISO (tristructural isotropic) coated fuel particles with zirconia kernels was characterised by Raman spectroscopy and magic angle spinning nuclear magnetic resonance (MAS-NMR). The techniques were evaluated as a probe for the evolution of SiC local structure as a function of chemical vapour deposition processing. Nuclear magnetic resonance resolved 29Si resonances for multiple hexagonal or cubic silicon local environments, consistent with a mixture of 6H, 15R and 4H polytypes, within a majority (36%) 3C–SiC target structure. Polarised Raman spectroscopy by contrast, showed some evidence of hexagonal and cubic local environments but no evidence for clearly defined hexagonal or orthorhombic polytypes. It was clear from the Raman that there was significant scattering from q > 0 regions of the Brillouin zone, consistent with a loss of translational symmetry associated with stacking faults. Simulation and TEM images suggested that the signals observed in Raman and NMR correspond closer to a random arrangement of SiC layers in which structures similar to the various polytypes occur over short distances. As NMR is a probe of local environment, the signals obtained were similar to those that would come from a mixture of crystallites, each of a well-defined polytype. The NMR data was analysed quantitatively by fitting the spectra of known polytypes and by using a simple model to represent the random arrangement of layers in a heavily faulted crystal.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 2012AREP; IA64;
Subjects: 03 - Mineral Sciences
Divisions: 03 - Mineral Sciences
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Nuclear Materials
Volume: 433
Page Range: pp. 199-205
Identification Number:
Depositing User: Sarah Humbert
Date Deposited: 21 Dec 2012 13:29
Last Modified: 23 Jul 2013 10:05

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