J. J. Crovisier and J. Honnorez  discuss an article by W. W. Maggs, “Mg May Protect Waste Under Glass” [Maggs, 1988] summarizing work by A. Barkatt (Catholic University, Washington, D.C.), B. P. Glass (University of Delaware, Newark), and S. Alterescu and J. A. O'Keefe (NASA/GSFC, Greenbelt, Md.). We found that seawater is orders of magnitude less corrosive t h an fresh water in attacking tektite glass; traced the protective effect to the presence of magnesium, at a level of about 1.3 g/L in seawater; and suggested that the effect might be useful in protecting nuclear waste glasses from corrosion.
Crovisier and Honnorez first make the point that the rate of corrosion of glass is, in principle, a function of the ratio of surface area 5 to the effective volume V. This concept, which is usually discussed in American literature under the name of S/V effects, is discussed by Crovisier and Honnorez in terms of the “permeability of the environment.” These effects have been carefully considered throughout our work (see, for example, Barkatt et al. [19867rsqb;). It turns out that in the sea the effective S/V is so small that the effects referred to by Crovisier and Honnorez can be ignored.
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