Zirconium 702 alloy metal

Zirconium (Zr 702)
a unique material
Zirconium (also spelled zirconium) is a silver-gray, shiny heavy metal. In its pure form it is easy to process, corrosion-resistant even at high temperatures and has a very small neutron capture cross-section. In addition, zirconium offers good stability against structural damage caused by neutron irradiation and against cavitation caused by coolant flows.

The metal is mainly pure or alloyed with 1.2-1.7% tin, used for corrosion-resistant pipes, fittings and taps in the chemical industry. This special alloy is called Zircaloy. Zirconium plays an important role in reactor construction. It is used for fuel element casings and supports, for pressure vessel lining, as well as for all structural components that come into contact with neutrons. In the rocket and jet aircraft industries, zirconium is used to make combustion chambers and supply lines. Zirconium is used as a getter material in electron and X-ray tubes.

Zirconium - highly technological and versatile
The metal with the chem. Atomic number 40, zirconium, is mainly used in compounds and alloys, but also has some practical properties as a pure substance.

The zircaloy mentioned above is, for example, the main component of the shells of uranium fuel elements in nuclear power plants. Here the element is characterized by an exceptionally high capture cross-section for thermal neutrons, as well as high corrosion resistance. This makes it suitable for the construction of chemical plants and especially for special parts such as valves, pumps, pipes or heat exchangers.

Zirconium is also suitable for the construction of incandescent lamps and vacuum systems, as it reacts with small amounts of oxygen and can therefore maintain the vacuum.

Zirconium alloys have a wide variety of uses
In addition to the best-known and most widespread alloy, Zircaloy, zirconium also gives other alloys valuable properties. As an addition to steel, for example, it increases the corrosion resistance, which is why surgical instruments are often made from such alloys.

Together with niobium, a superconducting alloy is created, which retains this property even under the influence of strong magnetic fields.

Basically, the addition of zirconium stabilizes an alloy and makes it more resistant.