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Title: Results of NDE Technique Evaluation of Clad Hydrides

This report fulfills the M4 milestone, M4FT-14IN0805023, Results of NDE Technique Evaluation of Clad Hydrides, under Work Package Number FT-14IN080502. During service, zirconium alloy fuel cladding will degrade via corrosion/oxidation. Hydrogen, a byproduct of the oxidation process, will be absorbed into the cladding and eventually form hydrides due to low hydrogen solubility limits. The hydride phase is detrimental to the mechanical properties of the cladding and therefore it is important to be able to detect and characterize the presence of this constituent within the cladding. Presently, hydrides are evaluated using destructive examination. If nondestructive evaluation techniques can be used to detect and characterize the hydrides, the potential exists to significantly increase test sample coverage while reducing evaluation time and cost. To demonstrate the viability this approach, an initial evaluation of eddy current and ultrasonic techniques were performed to demonstrate the basic ability to these techniques to detect hydrides or their effects on the microstructure. Conventional continuous wave eddy current techniques were applied to zirconium based cladding test samples thermally processed with hydrogen gas to promote the absorption of hydrogen and subsequent formation of hydrides. The results of the evaluation demonstrate that eddy current inspection approaches have the potential to detectmore » both the physical damage induced by hydrides, e.g. blisters and cracking, as well as the combined effects of absorbed hydrogen and hydride precipitates on the electrical properties of the zirconium alloy. Similarly, measurements of ultrasonic wave velocities indicate changes in the elastic properties resulting from the combined effects of absorbed hydrogen and hydride precipitates as well as changes in geometry in regions of severe degradation. However, for both approaches, the signal responses intended to make the desired measurement incorporate a number of contributing parameters. These contributing factors need to be recognized and a means to control them or separate their contributions will be required to obtain the desired information.« less
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Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Idaho National Laboratory (INL)
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Country of Publication:
United States
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE clad hydrides; nondestructuve evaluation