I currently have 100 grams of lithium hydride powder that needs to be held in a solid form. Initially, I was considering using cement, however, the moisture require converts the lithium hydride to lithium hydroxide. What would another moisture-free agent be that I could use for this task?

If it helps, the lithium hydride and the solidifying agent are to be used for neutron moderation.

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    $\begingroup$ How strong does the solid have to be, and what elements would be compatible, in terms of neutron cross-section?Paraffin wax has just H and C, but is not very strong. Seal it in polyethylene or polypropylene? $\endgroup$ Commented Jan 27, 2019 at 23:12
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    $\begingroup$ From what I remember, molten $\ce{LiH}$ is just poured under inert atmosphere into a container of the appropriate form, which is sealed later (or used in bulk – in aerospace industry). But it seems like you need some sort of a homogeneous solid matrix to keep $\ce{LiH}$ intact under ambient conditions, is it true? $\endgroup$
    – andselisk
    Commented Jan 27, 2019 at 23:20
  • $\begingroup$ Yes, you are correct. $\endgroup$
    – t1r3d
    Commented Jan 27, 2019 at 23:26

1 Answer 1


If the LiH needs to be exposed to ambient conditions, it should be enclosed is a moisture-impermeable container, e.g., a glass ampoule which is closed off. Glass can be blown quite thin - but then you need to be quite careful. As DrMoishe suggested, PE or PP would be good, but I'm thinking of it as a closed tube, not as a binder.


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