Preparation of Boron by Pyrolytic Decomposition of Boron Tribromide

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Date

2016

Authors

Lim, Emily Thomas

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Cocks, Franklin H
Simmons, Walter N

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Abstract

The national shortage of helium-3 has made it critical to develop an alternative to helium-3 neutron detectors. Boron-10, if it could be produced in macroscopic alpha-rhombohedral crystalline form, would be a viable alternative to helium-3. This work has determined the critical parameters needed for the preparation of alpha-rhombohedral boron by the pyrolytic decomposition of boron tribromide on tantalum wire. The primary parameters that must be met are wire temperature and feedstock purity. The minimum purity level for boron tribromide was determined to be 99.999% and it has been found that alpha-rhombohedral boron cannot be produced using 99.99% boron tribromide. The decomposition temperature was experimentally tested between 830°C and 1000°C. Alpha-rhombohedral boron was found at temperatures between 950°C and 1000°C using 99.999% pure boron tribromide.

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Citation

Lim, Emily Thomas (2016). Preparation of Boron by Pyrolytic Decomposition of Boron Tribromide. Master's thesis, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/12350.

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