Chemical compound

Zirconium(IV) fluoride (ZrF4) is an inorganic chemical compound. It is a component of ZBLAN fluoride glass. It is insoluble in water. It is the main component of fluorozirconate glasses.

Three crystalline phases of ZrF4 have been reported, α (monoclinic), β (tetragonal, Pearson symbol tP40, space group P42/m, No 84) and γ (unknown structure). β and γ phases are unstable and irreversibly transform into the α phase at 400 °C.[2]

Zirconium fluoride is used as a zirconium source in oxygen-sensitive applications, e.g. metal production.[3] Zirconium fluoride can be purified by distillation or sublimation.[4]

Conditions/substances to avoid are: moisture, active metals, acids and oxidizing agents.

Zirconium fluoride in a mixture with other fluorides is a coolant for molten salt reactors. In the mixture with sodium fluoride it is a candidate coolant for the Advanced High-Temperature Reactor.

Together with uranium salt, zirconium fluoride can be a component of fuel-coolant in molten salt reactors. Mixture of sodium fluoride, zirconium fluoride, and uranium tetrafluoride (53-41-6 mol.%) was used as a coolant in the Aircraft Reactor Experiment. A mixture of lithium fluoride, beryllium fluoride, zirconium fluoride, and uranium-233 tetrafluoride was used in the Molten-Salt Reactor Experiment. (Uranium-233 is used in the thorium fuel cycle reactors.)

References

  1. ^ "Zirconium compounds (as Zr)". Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health Concentrations (IDLH). National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).
  2. ^ Paul L. Brown; Federico J. Mompean; Jane Perrone; Myriam Illemassène (2005). Chemical thermodynamics of zirconium. Gulf Professional Publishing. p. 144. ISBN 0-444-51803-7.
  3. ^ "Zirconium fluoride". American Elements. Retrieved 2009-07-07.
  4. ^ "Method for preparing ultra-pure zirconium and hafnium tetrafluorides. United States Patent 4578252". Retrieved 2009-07-07.