Preliminary investigation of plate-type molybdenum disilicide fuel elements for an air-cycle nuclear reactor

Maxwell, W. A.

Flat, plate-type elements, 3.5 by 0.5 by 0.070 inches in size and containing 10 percent elemental natural uranium, were produced by hot pressing. The elements were acid-treated to remove surface uranium and then coated with an alumina glaze. Such an element remained stable and did not lose detectable quantities of fission fragments in a 400-hour treatment at 1800 degrees F in a flux of 5 X 10 to the 11th power neutrons per square centimeter per second. Such elements are conveniently produced and, dependent on design and on the successful resolution of problems such as thermal shock, offer a possible method of increasing air-cycle element temperatures and related performance.

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