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Caesium volatilisation in borosilicate glasses: a multinuclear magnetic resonance study

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The evaporation of Cs from caesium borosilicate glasses with variable melting times has been quantified using inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectroscopy and 133Cs NMR spin echo intensities. Caesium is shown to be lost as an oxide or in elemental form, not as a borate or silicate compound. The composition change is associated with a decrease in the fraction of four-coordinated boron, as measured by 11B MAS NMR, and regular changes in the 133Cs NMR peak position. Distinct behaviour of the two tetrahedral boron NMR peaks suggests that some degree of phase separation may also occur after long heating times. These results on a simplified model for a nuclear waste glass show that NMR can play a role in determining structural changes due to elemental volatility, and provide valuable information on which solutions to this problem may be based.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 2009

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