Thermal stability of oxidized ultrathin Li films on TZM for plasma facing components

O. Fasoranti, E. T. Ostrowski, B. E. Koel

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7 Scopus citations


For improved understanding of the behavior of Li plasma facing components (PFCs) in the presence of oxygen impurities, we report on the thermal stability of ultrathin (up to 1.0 nm) LiOx films on a titanium-zirconium-molybdenum (TZM) alloy substrate over the temperature range of 310–1400 K. LiOx films were prepared by either post-oxidation of Li films or Li films deposited on an oxygen-precovered TZM surface. Thermal stability of these films was studied using a combination of temperature programmed desorption (TPD), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and low-energy ion scattering (LEIS). For post-oxidized Li films, TPD showed that no Li desorption occurred until temperatures above 620 K, and then Li desorbed from the surface via at least three desorption peaks. The O 1s XPS spectra on the post-oxidized films at 310 K indicate the formation of lithium oxide (Li2O) and peroxide/hydroxide (Li2O2/LiOH). The peroxide/hydroxide converts to oxide after heating to 680 K with no desorption of Li or O2, and then this film decomposes to liberate Li into the gas phase while leaving oxygen at the TZM surface. Heating the LiOx films to 1070 K led to a solid-state reaction with surface Mo atoms of the substrate to form a condensed binary lithium molybdenum oxide (LixMoOy) phase, which upon further heating decomposed to liberate gas phase binary lithium molybdenum oxide species. Li deposition on an oxygen-precovered TZM surface formed a complex, highly stable, oxygen rich, Li-O-Mo interfacial oxide. Li desorption from multilayer Li films on oxygen-precovered TZM surfaces occurred in a metallic Li multilayer peak and three other oxide-derived peaks. These results support the improved thermal stability of oxidized lithium as compared to metallic Li and have implications for Mo impurity transport into the plasma at high temperatures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number152587
JournalJournal of Nuclear Materials
StatePublished - Jan 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • General Materials Science
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering


  • Lithium
  • TZM
  • molybdenum
  • plasma facing components
  • thin films


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