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Title: Finite element simulation of gap opening between cladding tube and spacer grid in a fuel rod assembly using crystallographic models of irradiation growth and creep

A physically-based crystal plasticity framework for modeling irradiation growth and creep is interfaced with the finite element code ABAQUS in order to study the contact forces and the gap evolution between the spacer grid and the cladding tube as a function of irradiation in a representative section of a fuel rod assembly. Deformation mechanisms governing the gap opening are identified and correlated to the texture-dependent material response. Thus, in the absence of coolant flow-induced vibrations, these simulations predict the contribution of irradiation growth and creep to the gap opening between the cladding tube and the springs and dimples on the spacer grid. The simulated contact forces on the springs and dimples are compared to available experimental and modeling data. Various combinations of external loads are applied on the springs and dimples to simulate fuel rods in the interior and at the periphery of the fuel rod assembly. Furthermore, we found that loading conditions representative (to a first order approximation) of fuel rods at the periphery show higher gap opening. This is in agreement with in-reactor data, where rod leakages due to the synergistic effects of gap opening and coolant flow-induced vibrations were generally found to occur at the periphery ofmore » the fuel rod assembly.« less
Authors:
 [1] ;  [1]
  1. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States). Materials Science and Technology Division
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-16-26727
Journal ID: ISSN 0029-5493; TRN: US1700644
Grant/Contract Number:
AC52-06NA25396
Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Nuclear Engineering and Design
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 315; Journal Issue: C; Journal ID: ISSN 0029-5493
Publisher:
Elsevier
Research Org:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Nuclear Energy (NE)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
42 ENGINEERING; 36 MATERIALS SCIENCE
OSTI Identifier:
1352418
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1397925