Doctoral Dissertations

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



Major Professor

Sheng Dai

Committee Members

Tessa Calhoun, Brian Long, Yanwen Zhang


Molten chloride salts have vast potential as heat transfer fluids with both nuclear and concentrated solar power applications. For application in energy systems, the characteristics that govern these systems must be well understood. This work focuses on inorganic molten chloride salts with a special emphasis on the experimental aspect of chemical research. Chapter 2 covers the synthetic approaches for the formation of molten chloride mixtures. Many salts can be purchased from industrial suppliers, but most must be purified therefore, Chapter 3 evaluates various methodology developed for removal of impurities in salt mixtures. Once the salt of proper content and purity is obtained it can be characterized. Chapter 4 reviews the characterization of various salts utilizing many analytical approaches. The remaining chapters focus on fluid property optimization needed for the industrial use of molten chlorides as heat transfer fluid. A novel mechanochemical synthetic route for the formation of MgCl2:KCl carnallite was instituted and is reviewed in Chapter 5. Chapter 6 reviews a novel apparatus designed to supercool chloride salts while still in the amorphous state. Magnetic nanoparticles are utilized in Chapter 7 to demonstrate the efficacy and first-time formation of an ultra-high temperature ferrofluid.

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