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Effects of Calcium Impurities on the Degradation ofβ″Alumina Utilized in Sodium-Sulfur Cells

Sun Chengwen Deng Qin Cao Jiadi Liu Lingen and Lin Zuxiang (Shanghai Institute of Ceramics,Academia Sinica)  
The effects of calcium impurities in beta″-alumina solid electrolytes on the de-gradation of beta″-alumina utilized in sodiumsulfur cells were studied.After thecells were in failure,calcium impurities on the surfaces of beta″-alumina ceramicstubes between two eletrodes were easily detected by EPMA.Significant calcium impuri-ties were discovered upon the beta″-alumina inner surface,that is a beta″-alumina/sodium interface in sodium-sulfur cell.it can be shown that calcium impurities lessthan 60 ppm in the sulfur electrods are not detrimental unable to cause an increasein cell discharge resistance with time of cycling during initial stage.But calcium im-purities,incorporated into beta″-alumina solid electrolytes,can lead to serious degra-dation in both conductivity and strength of beta″-alumina in the sodium-sulfur cells.Some mechanisms for the increase in resistance of beta″-alumina electrolyte withtime of cycling in the sodium-sulfur cell and also leading to earlier failure due tocalcium impurities have been discussed.
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