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Thermophysical Properties of Multiphase Borosilicate Glass-Ceramic Waste Forms

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Abstract

Multiphase borosilicate glass-ceramics represent one candidate to contain radioactive nuclear waste separated from used nuclear fuel. In this work, the thermophysical properties from room temperature to 1273 K were investigated for four different borosilicate glass-ceramic compositions containing waste loadings from 42 to 60 wt% to determine the sensitivity of these properties to waste loading, as-fabricated microstructure, and potential evolutions in microstructure brought about by temperature transients. The thermal expansion, specific heat capacity, thermal diffusivity, and thermal conductivity are presented. The impact of increasing waste loading is shown to have a small but measurable effect on the thermophysical properties between the four compositions, contrasted to a much greater impact observed when transitioning from predominantly crystalline to amorphous systems. Thermal cycling below 1273 K was not found to measurably impact the thermophysical properties of the compositions investigated here.

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