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Thin Film Coatings


Thin Film Coatings for the Technologies of Hydrogen Isotope Permeation Through Metallic Membranes and for the Protection of Structural Materials

Tech Area / Field

  • CHE-IND/Industrial Chemistry and Chemical Process Engineering/Chemistry

8 Project completed

Registration date

Completion date

Senior Project Manager
Lapidus O V

Leading Institute
VNIIEF, Russia, N. Novgorod reg., Sarov

Supporting institutes

  • St Petersburg State University of Telecommunications, Russia, St Petersburg\nSt Petersburg State University / Institute of Physics, Russia, St Petersburg


  • Open University, UK, Walton Hall\nNational Institute for Fusion Science, Japan, Gifu-ken\nUniversity of Tokyo / School of Engineering, Japan, Tokyo

Project summary

The main goal of this Project consist in developing of technologies of, and in working out of recommendations for, the employment of thin (from monolayer up to several micrometer thickness) coatings for the purposes of membrane techniques to evacuate and recycle D/T fuel mixture in controlled fusion devices and for the protection of structural materials that operate in media containing hydrogen isotopes.

The chief tasks of the Project are:

- Studying of the effects of thin nonmetallic films on the permeation (including superpermeation) and accumulation in metals of thermal and suprathermal hydrogen isotope particles. Examining of the mechanisms of hydrogen isotope transport in "gas - nonmetal film - metal" systems and of their correlation with an atomic and electronic structure of the surface.
- Extending on tritium of the results obtained for protium and deuterium both earlier and in the course of the implementation of this Project.
- Developing of approaches towards the employment of superpermeable membranes to control the fuel mixture circulation and recycling in fusion machines
- Investigating of the effects of thin film coatings on the mechanical strength and durability of materials at their operation in media containing hydrogen isotopes, including the case of high (up to 1000 at.) tritium pressures.
- Developing of mathematical approaches and computer codes to calculate hydrogen isotope accumulation and permeation in laminated metal - coating systems.
- Compiling of data bases on the interaction of thermal and suprathermal hydrogen isotope particles with metals and structural materials having thin film coatings.

The final products of the Project will be:

- Recommendations on, and technologies of, employment of thin film coatings for the fabrication of superpermeable membranes to evacuate and recycle hydrogen isotopes in fusion machines, and for the protection of structural materials from the detrimental effects of hydrogen isotope inventory.
- Laboratory mock-up systems, including experimental setups operating with tritium, to simulate controlled recycling of hydrogen and its isotopes in fusion machines.
- Data bases on the interactions of hydrogen isotopes, including tritium, with metals and structural materials having thin film coatings.

The organizations interested in the Project implementation may be:

- Those engaged in the development of the prospective controlled fusion devices (ITER, LHD, etc.).
- Designers of installations for the production of highest purity hydrogen, including the hydrogen energetics development.
- Branches of industries and energetics employing structural parts, joints and components operating in hydrogen or hydrogen-containing media.

International Collaboration

Continuation of the already existing collaboration with the National Institute of Fusion Science (Nagoya, Japan), The University of Tokyo (Japan) and Ecole Polytechnique (France) is envisaged in the frameworks of this Project, and a collaboration with the Queen's University (Belfast, UK) is supposed to be established. The collaboration is supposed to touch studies of the physical aspects of interphase processes in hydrogen - metal systems as well as applied researches in the field of controlled fusion engineering. Of particular importance may be the application of the Project results for an active control of D/T fuel fluxes in Large Helical Device (LHD) near Nagoya (Japan), whose start of operation is planned for 1998. Application of the Project results on superpermeable membranes by EURATOM is also envisaged in the frameworks of its controlled fusion programs.

The practice is supposed to be continued of inviting of Russian participants of the Project to stage joint experiments on hydrogen particle permeation and inventory in the foreign partner laboratories with the use of their facilities and equipment. Specimens fabricated and technologies developed in the course of the Project implementation are supposed to be tested in the foreign partner institutions in view of a possible practical employment in the future. Regular exchange of information, including arranging of joint workshops, is also planned.