Conditions Extrêmes et Matériaux : Haute Température et Irradiation

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M.Ficheux, E.Burov, G.Aquilanti, N.Trcera, V.Montouillout, L.Cormier, 'Structural evolution of high zirconia aluminosilicate glasses', J. Non-Cryst. Solids 539 120050 (2020) doi:10.1016/j.jnoncrysol.2020.120050

We report a detailed structural investigation of Ca-Na aluminosilicate glasses containing 0–20 wt% ZrO2 using X-ray absorption spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy and 27Al and 29Si NMR. The X-ray absorption spectroscopy data reveal that Zr is predominantly present in ZrO6 octahedra but a significant Zr coordination change occurs with increasing ZrO2 content. Though Al and Zr are competing to be surrounded by charge balancing cations, 27Al NMR data do not show the presence of high-coordinated Al species; thus charge-balancing cations are preferentially localized close to AlO4 tetrahedra rather than Zr polyhedra, explaining the increase in Zr coordination number that ultimately leads to limit Zr solubility in glasses. Raman and 29Si NMR data indicates that Zr atoms are linked to the silicate network with a trend for higher degree of network connectivity at high zirconia content. Change in network connectivity and in Zr environment provide insights to understand chemical durability or crystallization in glasses.