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Tempering of 2.25 Cr-1 Mo Steel and HT-9 Steel to Reduce Liquid-Metal-Induced Embrittlement Susceptibility in 17Li-83Pb Liquid

Glen R. Edwards, Kent A. Jones, Steven F. Halvorson

Fusion Science and Technology

Volume 10 / Number 2 / September 1986 / Pages 243-252


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Recent inertial confinement fusion reactor designs utilize liquid 17Li-83Pb blankets to absorb the neutron and thermal fluxes. One of the crucial concerns of these designs is the compatibility of structural alloys with this lithium-lead alloy, especially because of this liquid's possible propensity for embrittling materials. Current candidate pressure vessel steels for liquid lithium or lithium-lead containment are the Cr-Mo steels such as HT-9 (12 Cr-1 Mo), 2.25 Cr-1 Mo, and niobium-stabilized 2.25 Cr-1 Mo. This investigation was therefore aimed at characterizing the lithium-lead embrittlement susceptibility of the weldments of these steels subjected to a 17Li-83Pb liquid. Results of these embrittlement studies have shown that as-welded heat-affected zones of low phosphorus and sulfur 2.25 Cr-1 Mo, niobium-stabilized 2.25 Cr-1 Mo, and HT-9 steels all exhibit liquid-metal-induced embrittlement susceptibility when subjected to a 17Li-83Pb liquid. The embrittlement, however, was found to be very dependent on post-weld heat treatment. Normally extensive post-weld heat treatments greatly ameliorate the 17Li-83Pb embrittlement, rendering these steels acceptable for 17Li-83Pb containment.

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