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Home   /   Post Doctorat   /   Modeling the corrosion behavior of stainless steels in a nitric acid media with temperature

Modeling the corrosion behavior of stainless steels in a nitric acid media with temperature

Engineering sciences Materials and applications


Controlling the aging of equipment materials (mainly stainless steel) of the spent nuclear fuel reprocessing plant is the subject of constant attention. This control requires a better understanding of the corrosion phenomena of steels by nitric acid (oxidizing agent used during the recycling stages), and ultimately through their modeling.
The materials of interest are Cr-Ni austenitic stainless steels, with very low carbon content. A recent study on Si-rich stainless steel, which was developed with the aim of improving the corrosion resistance of these steels with respect to highly oxidizing environments [1 , 2 ]; showed that the corrosion of this steel was thermally activated between 40 °C and 142 °C with different behavior below and above the boiling temperature (107 °C) of the solution [3]. Indeed, between 40°C and 107°C, the activation energy is 77 kJ/mol and above boiling point, it is much lower and is worth 20 kJ/mol. This difference may be due to a lower energy barrier or a different kinetically limited step.
The challenge of this post-doctoral subject is to have a predictive corrosion model depending on the temperature (below and beyond boiling). With this objective, it will be important to analyze and identify the species involved in the corrosion process (liquid and gas phase) as a function of temperature but also to characterize the boiling regimes. This model will be able to explain the difference in activation energies of this Si-rich steel below and above the boiling temperature of a concentrated nitric acid solution but will also make it possible to optimize the processes of the factory where temperature and/or heat transfer play an important role.


Département de Recherche sur les Matériaux et la Physico-chimie pour les énergies bas carbone
Service de recherche en Corrosion et Comportement des Matériaux
Laboratoire d’Etude de la Corrosion Non Aqueuse
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