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Title: SEM Characterization of the High Burn-up Microstructure of U-7Mo Alloy

During irradiation, the microstructure of U-7Mo evolves until at a fission density near 5x1021 f/cm3 a high-burnup microstructure exists that is very different than what was observed at lower fission densities. This microstructure is dominated by randomly distributed, relatively large, homogeneous fission gas bubbles. The bubble superlattice has collapsed in many microstructural regions, and the fuel grain sizes, in many areas, become sub-micron in diameter with both amorphous fuel and crystalline fuel present. Solid fission product precipitates can be found inside the fission gas bubbles. To generate more information about the characteristics of the high-fission density microstructure, three samples irradiated in the RERTR-7 experiment have been characterized using a scanning electron microscope equipped with a focused ion beam. The FIB was used to generate samples for SEM imaging and to perform 3D reconstruction of the microstructure, which can be used to look for evidence of possible fission gas bubble interlinkage.
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Conference: Research Reactor Fuel Management Conference,Ljubljana Slovenia,03/30/2014,04/03/2014
Research Org:
Idaho National Laboratory (INL)
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Country of Publication:
United States
11 NUCLEAR FUEL CYCLE AND FUEL MATERIALS fuel; irradiation; nuclear; uranium