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Title: Thermal conductivity of self-ion irradiated nanocrystalline zirconium thin films

Thermomechanical stability and high thermal conductivity are important for nuclear cladding material performance and reliability, which degrade over time under irradiation. The literature suggests nanocrystalline materials as radiation tolerant, but little or no evidence is present from thermal transport perspective. In this study, we irradiated 10 nm grain size zirconium thin films with 800 keV Zr + beam from a 6 MV HVE Tandem accelerator to achieve various doses of 3 × 10 10 to 3.26 × 10 14 ions/cm 2, corresponding to displacement per atom (dpa) of 2.1 × 10 –4 to 2.28. Transmission electron microscopy showed significant grain growth, texture evolution and oxidation in addition to the creation of displacement defects due to the irradiation. The specimens were co-fabricated with micro-heaters to establish thermal gradients that were mapped using infrared thermometry. An energy balance approach was used to estimate the thermal conductivity of the specimens, as function of irradiation dosage. As a result, up to 32% reduction of thermal conductivity was measured for the sample exposed to a dose of 2.1 dpa (3 × 10 14 ions/cm 2).
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ; ORCiD logo [1]
  1. Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park, PA (United States)
  2. Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 0040-6090; PII: S0040609017305291
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Thin Solid Films
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 638; Journal Issue: C; Journal ID: ISSN 0040-6090
Research Org:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Nuclear Energy (NE)
Country of Publication:
United States
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; Thermal conductivity; Ion irradiation; Nanocrystalline metal; Transmission electron microscopy (TEM)
OSTI Identifier: