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TENUE SOUS IRRADIATION DE SUPERMIROIRS POUR GUIDES DE NEUTRONS

Abstract : The aim of this work is to study the aging of NiCx/Ti supermirror multilayers used in neutron guides under thermal neutron irradiation. These multilayers allow an increase of the apparent critical angle of total reflection by creating constructive interferences. Neutrons fluxes are thus increased in neutron guides made with a supermirror coating. Thin films of one and ten bilayers have been deposited on a silicon and a borosilicate glass substrate. We have then studied the evolution of their optical, structural and mechanical properties after irradiation and annealing. After irradiation, a decrease in neutron reflectivity has been observed, due to the interdiffusion of both materials : this phenomenon was particularly important in the coatings deposited on a glass substrate. X-ray diffraction and X-ray absorption spectroscopy have shown that the structural evolutions of both nickel and titanium do not depend on the substrate. Nickel layers remain face-centered cubic after treatment, whereas the initially hexagonal closed-packed titanium becomes face-centered cubic with a texture in the [111] direction. This phase transformation has been attributed to the formation of a TiH compound containing as much as 50% hydrogen. Despite these structural changes, stress relaxation has occurred after irradiation in our layers. On the contrary, the mean stress that we have determined in previous samples, elaborated in another laboratory, has increased after irradiation. Comparison of both results shows that stress evolution is linked to the deposition conditions. As stress remains almost unchanged after annealing, we may conclude that only irradiation defects, and not heating, lead to stress evolution. Our samples being very similar to real neutron guides, we can extend the results we have obtained in this work to real supermirrors.
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Kalyana N'Guy-Maréchal. TENUE SOUS IRRADIATION DE SUPERMIROIRS POUR GUIDES DE NEUTRONS. Physique [physics]. Université Paris Sud - Paris XI, 1997. Français. ⟨tel-00229746⟩

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