Note on the use of silica-free glasses for handling anhydrous hydrogen fluoride and uranium hexafluoride

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Material Information

Title:
Note on the use of silica-free glasses for handling anhydrous hydrogen fluoride and uranium hexafluoride
Series Title:
United States. Atomic Energy Commission. MDDC ;
Physical Description:
3 p. ill. : ; 27 cm.
Language:
English
Creator:
Grosse, Aristid V
Columbia University
U.S. Atomic Energy Commission
Publisher:
Technical Information Division, Oak Ridge Directed Operations
Place of Publication:
Oak Ridge, Tenn
Publication Date:

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Uranium hexafluoride   ( lcsh )
Uranium fluorides -- Purification   ( lcsh )
Uranium -- Purification   ( lcsh )
Genre:
federal government publication   ( marcgt )
technical report   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )

Notes

Restriction:
"Date Declassified: June 13, 1947"
Statement of Responsibility:
by Aristid V. Grosse.
General Note:
Manhattan District Declassified Code
General Note:
"Date of Manuscript: September 1945"

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
aleph - 005023979
oclc - 277772813
System ID:
AA00009277:00001


This item is only available as the following downloads:


Full Text

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MDDC 1040


UNITED STATES ATOMIC ENERGY COMMISSION







NOTE ON THE USE OF SILICA-FREE GLASSES
FOR HANDLING ANHYDROUS HYDROGEN FLUORIDE AND URANIUM HEXAFLUORIDE



by
Aristid V. Grosse




Columbia University ;





U vS DEPOSItOr


This document consists of 3 pages
Date of Manuscript: September 1945
Date Declassified: Tune 13.1947


This document is issued for official use.
Its issuance does not constitute authority
to declassify copies or versions of the
same or similar content and title
and by the same author (s).



Technical Information Division, Oak Ridge Directed Operations
Oak Ridge, Tennessee


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NOTE ON THE USE OF SILICA-FREE GLASSES
FOR HANDLING ANHYDROUS HYDROGEN FLUORIDE AND URANIUM HEXAFLUORIDE


By Aristid V. Grosse


In trying to locate silica-free glasses, we came across the silica-free aluminum phosphate
glasses, invented by Mr. A. Pincus of the American Optical Company, in Southbrldge, Massachusetts.
A perfectly clear colorless cylinder of this glass, 43.4 mm in diameter and 7.9 mm thick, weigh-
ing 30.8721 grams (D= 2.64 g.,'cm') was immersed for 2.5 hours in boiling pure anhydrous hydrogen
fluoride (from the Harshaw Chemical Company), contained in a copper beaker. After this treatment
the loss in weight was only 8.3 mg or the
8.3
rate of solubility = 0.1 mg, cm' of surface and hour
34.5 2.5
The glass remained perfectly clear and transparent. Under the same conditions, ordinary glass is
completely corroded and becomes opaque.
Further experiments on subjecting such glass to the continuous and simultaneous action of both
gaseous and liquid hydrogen fluoride, at room temperatures, showed their remarkable corrosion
resisting properties. Thus the dream of every fluorine chemist to have a transparent and practically
usable material forwork with hydrogen fluoride is now realized.

A similar experiment was performed with uranium hexafluoride. A flat cylinder of the silica-
free glass was sealed, without precautions (that is, HF and SiF, present!) with excess of UFF in a
Pyrex tube. This tube was heated for 5 1 4 hours to 97-1000C, in a boiling water bath. Liquid UF,
covered part of the test piece. On opening the glass tube, which was badly corroded, it was found
that the silica-free glass remained unchanged and stayed perfectly clear.

REACTION VESSEL WITH SILICA-FREE GLASS
-While efforts were being made to produce glass tubing and other glassware from this new glass,
we built a cylindrical reaction vessel using silica-free glass as one side of the vessel.
It was made by drilling out a hole in a copper block; another hole was drilled to permit cooling
this block with either ice or dry ice. A condenser, two valve openings, at top and bottom, and a
thermometer well were provided. Additional details can be gathered from Figure 1, showing the top,
side, and front views respectively, of this vessel.
The silica-free glass plate was arranged as shown in Figure 2. The rim of the plate was lying
flat on the polished clean metal surface of the ledge. The narrow space between the plate and the
copper walls was filled with dry precipitated and powdered calcium fluoride. This fluoride has the
property of swelling somewhat in the presence of HF. The annular space was then filled with two
carefully cut-to-fit rings of butyl rubber. These were pressed down evenly by a wedge ring, which
in turn was pressed down by metal ring A, by means of six hexagon bolts.
For experiments with hydrogen fluoride, the copper block was first insulated, the cooling hole
filled with ordinary ice, and the condenser cooled by surrounding a section with a belt of dry ice
chips. Gaseous anhydrous HF was then admitted through a copper tube into the condenser until the


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Figure 1. Silica-free glass reaction vessel.


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S. desired amoumn collected. Various chemicals could then be added and their reactions in or with HF
: ;.!.",readily observed through the clear glass.
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SThus ka ctclusion reached tediously, previously, namely that uranium hexalluoride has a very
small solubility in anhydrous hydrogen fluoride, could be checked in a matter of seconds by observing
S. a crystal of US sink in an excess of boiling HF and dissolve to only a small extent.

; ACI.NOWLDGMENTS
:This vork was cairisd out in January 1941 at the Department of Physics of Columbia University.
I, t was not submitted for publication earlier in view of National Security considerations.
.Acknowledgments are due to Mr. A. Pincus of the American Optical Company for samples of
ii,..'' ca-free glass, to Dr. H. C. Urey for his continuous interest and to Mr. Sam Cooie, senior machin-
it. ::tPof the Department of Physics, for the construction of the reaction vessel.








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