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Title: Materials for Consideration in Standardized Canister Design Activities.

This document identifies materials and material mitigation processes that might be used in new designs for standardized canisters for storage, transportation, and disposal of spent nuclear fuel. It also addresses potential corrosion issues with existing dual-purpose canisters (DPCs) that could be addressed in new canister designs. The major potential corrosion risk during storage is stress corrosion cracking of the weld regions on the 304 SS/316 SS canister shell due to deliquescence of chloride salts on the surface. Two approaches are proposed to alleviate this potential risk. First, the existing canister materials (304 and 316 SS) could be used, but the welds mitigated to relieve residual stresses and/or sensitization. Alternatively, more corrosion-resistant steels such as super-austenitic or duplex stainless steels, could be used. Experimental testing is needed to verify that these alternatives would successfully reduce the risk of stress corrosion cracking during fuel storage. For disposal in a geologic repository, the canister will be enclosed in a corrosion-resistant or corrosion-allowance overpack that will provide barrier capability and mechanical strength. The canister shell will no longer have a barrier function and its containment integrity can be ignored. The basket and neutron absorbers within the canister have the important role of limiting themore » possibility of post-closure criticality. The time period for corrosion is much longer in the post-closure period, and one major unanswered question is whether the basket materials will corrode slowly enough to maintain structural integrity for at least 10,000 years. Whereas there is extensive literature on stainless steels, this evaluation recommends testing of 304 and 316 SS, and more corrosion-resistant steels such as super-austenitic, duplex, and super-duplex stainless steels, at repository-relevant physical and chemical conditions. Both general and localized corrosion testing methods would be used to establish corrosion rates and component lifetimes. Finally, it is unlikely that the aluminum-based neutron absorber materials that are commonly used in existing DPCs would survive for 10,000 years in disposal environments, because the aluminum will act as a sacrificial anode for the steel. We recommend additional testing of borated and Gd-bearing stainless steels, to establish general and localized corrosion resistance in repository-relevant environmental conditions.« less
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Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Sandia National Laboratories (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Nuclear Energy (NE), Fuel Cycle Technologies (NE-5)
Country of Publication:
United States