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Title: Experimental Study on Surrogate Nuclear Fuel Rods under Reversed Cyclic Bending

Abstract

The mechanical behavior of spent nuclear fuel (SNF) rods under reversed cyclic bending or bending fatigue must be understood to evaluate their vibration integrity in a transportation environment. This is especially important for high-burnup fuels (>45 GWd/MTU), which have the potential for increased structural damage. It has been demonstrated that the bending fatigue of SNF rods can be effectively studied using surrogate rods. In this investigation, surrogate rods made of stainless steel (SS) 304 cladding and aluminum oxide pellets were tested under load or moment control at a variety of amplitude levels at 5 Hz using the Cyclic Integrated Reversible-Bending Fatigue Tester developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The behavior of the rods was further characterized using flexural rigidity and hysteresis data, and fractography was performed on the failed rods. The proposed surrogate rods captured many of the characteristics of deformation and failure mode observed in SNF, including the linear-to-nonlinear deformation transition and large residual curvature in static tests, PPI and PCMI failure mechanisms, and large variation in the initial structural condition. Rod degradation was measured and characterized by measuring the flexural rigidity; the degradation of the rigidity depended on both the moment amplitude applied and the initial structural conditionmore » of the rods. It was also shown that a cracking initiation site can be located on the internal surface or the external surface of cladding. Finally, fatigue damage to the bending rods can be described in terms of flexural rigidity, and the fatigue life of rods can be predicted once damage model parameters are properly evaluated. The developed experimental approach, test protocol, and analysis method can be used to study the vibration integrity of SNF rods in the future.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [1]
  1. ORNL
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Nuclear Energy (NE)
OSTI Identifier:
1355876
DOE Contract Number:
AC05-00OR22725
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: Symposium on Fatigue and Fracture Test Planning, Test Data Acquisitions and Analysis, San Antonio, TX, USA, 20160504, 20160505
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
Spent nuclear fuels; vibration integrity; surrogate rods; reversed bending; cyclic fatigue; cladding failure

Citation Formats

Wang, Hong, and Wang, Jy-An John. Experimental Study on Surrogate Nuclear Fuel Rods under Reversed Cyclic Bending. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1520/STP159820160051.
Wang, Hong, & Wang, Jy-An John. Experimental Study on Surrogate Nuclear Fuel Rods under Reversed Cyclic Bending. United States. doi:10.1520/STP159820160051.
Wang, Hong, and Wang, Jy-An John. Sun . "Experimental Study on Surrogate Nuclear Fuel Rods under Reversed Cyclic Bending". United States. doi:10.1520/STP159820160051.
@article{osti_1355876,
title = {Experimental Study on Surrogate Nuclear Fuel Rods under Reversed Cyclic Bending},
author = {Wang, Hong and Wang, Jy-An John},
abstractNote = {The mechanical behavior of spent nuclear fuel (SNF) rods under reversed cyclic bending or bending fatigue must be understood to evaluate their vibration integrity in a transportation environment. This is especially important for high-burnup fuels (>45 GWd/MTU), which have the potential for increased structural damage. It has been demonstrated that the bending fatigue of SNF rods can be effectively studied using surrogate rods. In this investigation, surrogate rods made of stainless steel (SS) 304 cladding and aluminum oxide pellets were tested under load or moment control at a variety of amplitude levels at 5 Hz using the Cyclic Integrated Reversible-Bending Fatigue Tester developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The behavior of the rods was further characterized using flexural rigidity and hysteresis data, and fractography was performed on the failed rods. The proposed surrogate rods captured many of the characteristics of deformation and failure mode observed in SNF, including the linear-to-nonlinear deformation transition and large residual curvature in static tests, PPI and PCMI failure mechanisms, and large variation in the initial structural condition. Rod degradation was measured and characterized by measuring the flexural rigidity; the degradation of the rigidity depended on both the moment amplitude applied and the initial structural condition of the rods. It was also shown that a cracking initiation site can be located on the internal surface or the external surface of cladding. Finally, fatigue damage to the bending rods can be described in terms of flexural rigidity, and the fatigue life of rods can be predicted once damage model parameters are properly evaluated. The developed experimental approach, test protocol, and analysis method can be used to study the vibration integrity of SNF rods in the future.},
doi = {10.1520/STP159820160051},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Sun Jan 01 00:00:00 EST 2017},
month = {Sun Jan 01 00:00:00 EST 2017}
}

Conference:
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  • We studied behavior of surrogate nuclear fuel rods made of Zircaloy-4 (Zry-4) cladding with alumina pellets under reversed cyclic bending. Tests were performed under load or moment control at 5 Hz, and an empirical correlation was established between rod fatigue life and amplitude of the applied moment. Fatigue response of Zry-4 cladding was further characterized by using flexural rigidity. Degradation of flexural rigidity was shown to depend on the moment applied and the prefatigue condition of specimens. Pellet-to-pellet interface (PPI), pellet-to-cladding interface (PCI), and pellet condition all affect surrogate rod failure. Bonding/debonding of PPI/PCI and pellet fracturing contribute to surrogatemore » rod bending fatigue. Also, the effect of sensor spacing on curvature measurement using three-point deflections was studied; the method based on effective specimen gauge length is effective in sensor spacing correction. Finally, we developed the database and gained understanding in this study such that it will serve as input to analysis of SNF vibration integrity.« less
  • Testing high-burnup spent nuclear fuel (SNF) presents many challenges in areas such as specimen preparation, specimen installation, mechanical loading, load control, measurements, data acquisition, and specimen disposal because these tasks are complicated by the radioactivity of the test specimens. Research and comparison studies conducted at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) resulted in a new concept in 2010 for a U-frame testing setup on which to perform hot-cell reversible bending fatigue testing. Subsequently, the three-dimensional finite element analysis and the engineering design of components were completed. In 2013 the ORNL team finalized the upgrade of the U-frame testing setup and themore » integration of the U-frame setup into a Bose dual linear motor test bench to develop a cyclic integrated reversible-bending fatigue tester (CIRFT). A final check was conducted on the CIRFT test system in August 2013, and the CIRFT was installed in the hot cell in September 2013 to evaluate both the static and dynamic mechanical response of SNF rods under simulated loads. The fatigue responses of Zircaloy-4 (Zry-4) cladding and the role of pellet pellet and pellet clad interactions are critical to SNF vibration integrity, but such data are not available due to the unavailability of an effective testing system. While the deployment of the developed CIRFT test system in a hot cell will provide the opportunity to generate the data, the use of a surrogate rod has proven quite effective in identifying the underlying deformation mechanism of an SNF composite rod under an equivalent loading condition. This paper presents the experimental results of using surrogate rods under CIRFT reversible cyclic loading. Specifically, monotonic and cyclic bending tests were conducted on surrogate rods made of a Zry-4 tube and alumina pellet inserts, both with and without an epoxy bond.« less
  • The chemical structure of a methane counterflow diffusion flame and of the same flame doped with 1000 ppm (molar) of either jet fuel or a 6-component jet fuel surrogate was analyzed experimentally, by gas sampling via quartz microprobes and subsequent GC/MS analysis, and computationally using a semi-detailed kinetic mechanism for the surrogate blend. Conditions were chosen to ensure that all three flames were non-sooting, with identical temperature profiles and stoichiometric mixture fraction, through a judicious selection of feed stream composition and strain rate. The experimental dataset provides a glimpse of the pyrolysis and oxidation behavior of jet fuel in amore » diffusion flame. The jet fuel initial oxidation is consistent with anticipated chemical kinetic behavior, based on thermal decomposition of large alkanes to smaller and smaller fragments and the survival of ring-stabilized aromatics at higher temperatures. The 6-component surrogate captures the same trend correctly, but the agreement is not quantitative with respect to some of the aromatics such as benzene and toluene. Various alkanes, alkenes and aromatics among the jet fuel components are either only qualitatively characterized or could not be identified, because of the presence of many isomers and overlapping spectra in the chromatogram, leaving 80% of the carbon from the jet fuel unaccounted for in the early pyrolysis history of the parent fuel. Computationally, the one-dimensional code adopted a semi-detailed kinetic mechanism for the surrogate blend that is based on an existing hierarchically constructed kinetic model for alkanes and simple aromatics, extended to account for the presence of tetralin and methylcyclohexane as reference fuels. The computational results are in reasonably good agreement with the experimental ones for the surrogate behavior, with the greatest discrepancy in the concentrations of aromatics and ethylene. (author)« less
  • Abstract not provided.