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Title: Irradiation Testing of Ultrasonic Transducers

Ultrasonic technologies offer the potential for high accuracy and resolution in-pile measurement of a range of parameters, including geometry changes, temperature, crack initiation and growth, gas pressure and composition, and microstructural changes. Many Department of Energy-Office of Nuclear Energy (DOE-NE) programs are exploring the use of ultrasonic technologies to provide enhanced sensors for in-pile instrumentation during irradiation testing. For example, the ability of single, small diameter ultrasonic thermometers (UTs) to provide a temperature profile in candidate metallic and oxide fuel would provide much needed data for validating new fuel performance models. Other efforts include an ultrasonic technique to detect morphology changes (such as crack initiation and growth) and acoustic techniques to evaluate fission gas composition and pressure. These efforts are limited by the lack of existing knowledge of ultrasonic transducer material survivability under irradiation conditions. For this reason, the Pennsylvania State University (PSU) was awarded an Advanced Test Reactor National Scientific User Facility (ATR NSUF) project to evaluate promising magnetostrictive and piezoelectric transducer performance in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Research Reactor (MITR) up to a fast fluence of at least 1021 n/cm2 (E> 0.1 MeV). The goal of this research is to characterize magnetostrictive and piezoelectric transducer survivability duringmore » irradiation, enabling the development of novel radiation tolerant ultrasonic sensors for use in Material and Test Reactors (MTRs). As such, this test will be an instrumented lead test and real-time transducer performance data will be collected along with temperature and neutron and gamma flux data. The current work bridges the gap between proven out-of-pile ultrasonic techniques and in-pile deployment of ultrasonic sensors by acquiring the data necessary to demonstrate the performance of ultrasonic transducers.« less
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Publication Date:
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Resource Relation:
Conference: 2013 3rd International Conference on Advancements in Nuclear Instrumentation, Measurement Methods and Their Applications, June 23-27, 2013, Marseille, France, 1-7
IEEE, Piscatway, NJ, United States(US).
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
In-Pile Instrumentation, Material and Test Reactors, Ultrasonic Transducers, high-temperature sensors, harsh-environment sensors