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Thermodynamic properties of Ln-O (Ln = La, Pr, Nd) solid solutions and their deoxidation by molten salt electrolysis

Okabe, TH and Waseda, Y and Hirota, K and Jacob, KT (1998) Thermodynamic properties of Ln-O (Ln = La, Pr, Nd) solid solutions and their deoxidation by molten salt electrolysis. In: The Mining and Materials Processing Institute of Japan, 114 (11). pp. 813-818.

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Abstract

The lanthanide metals lanthanum, praseodymium and neodymium containing 2,200, 2,600, 1,850 mass ppm oxygen, respectively, were deoxidized to 20-30 ppm level at 1,073 K by an electrochemical method. The metal to be deoxidized was used as the cathode in an electrolysis cell which consisted of a graphite anode and molten CaCl2 electrolyte. The calcium metal produced at the cathode by electrolysis effectively deoxidized the lanthanide metal. Calcium oxide produced by deoxidation, dissolved in the melt. The liberation of carbon monoxide/dioxide at the anode was found to prevent accumulation of oxygen in the melt. For a quantitative discussion of the limits of deoxidation achievable by this technique, a thermodynamic investigation of the lanthanide-oxygen (Ln-O ; Ln = La, Pr, Nd) solid solutions was conducted. The lanthanide metal, yttrium and titanium samples were immersed in calcium-saturated CaCl2 melt, containing a small quantity of dissolved CaO, at 1,093 K. The oxygen potential of the melt and the Ln-O solid solutions were obtained from the oxygen content of yttrium samples at equilibrium, and the known thermodynamic properties of yttrium-oxygen solid solution. The results were confirmed by using Y/Y2O3 equilibrium to control the oxygen potential of the molten salt reservoir. The oxygen affinity of the metals was found to decrease in the order : Y > Ti > Nd > Pr > La. The deoxidation results are consistent with the thermodynamic properties of the RE-O solid solutions.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Rare earth metals;Lanthanum;Praseodymium;Neodymium;Oxygen; Thermodynamics;Deoxidation;Purification;Electrochemistry
Department/Centre: Division of Mechanical Sciences > Materials Engineering (formerly Metallurgy)
Date Deposited: 01 Mar 2012 06:09
Last Modified: 01 Mar 2012 06:09
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ernet.in/id/eprint/42695

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