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Thermodynamic study of the chlorine content of stainless steel

Königsberger, E.ORCID: 0000-0002-4606-0741, Spahiu, K. and Herschend, B. (2021) Thermodynamic study of the chlorine content of stainless steel. Metallurgical and Materials Transactions B: Process Metallurgy and Materials Processing Science .

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No thermodynamic data for the solution of Cl in ferrous alloys were found in the literature. This is in accord with recent Accelerator Mass Spectroscopy (AMS) analyses which showed that Cl contents in stainless steel (SS) are in the order of a few ppb. However, based on older chemical analyses of Cl in the order of 100 ppm, SS that has been irradiated with thermal neutrons in nuclear reactors is considered a major source of the long-lived 36Cl isotope in nuclear waste. In this study, the potential Cl contamination of SS originating from production and refinement processes is investigated. Unlike ferrous alloys, blast-furnace and steelmaking slags can dissolve significant amounts of Cl. The equilibrium distribution of Cl species between slags and gas phase was calculated for various steelmaking processes using the FactSage 7.2 software and databases. The results showed that despite the high volatility of metal chlorides at high temperatures, significant fractions of Cl can be retained in the slag phase even at 1600 °C. Chloride may also be incorporated in non-metallic inclusions originating from secondary refining. Based on these results and on several further assumptions, various scenarios for explaining, and also avoiding, Cl contamination of steel are discussed.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Mathematics, Statistics, Chemistry and Physics
Publisher: Springer Boston
Copyright: © 2021 Springer Nature Switzerland AG.
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