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Title: Methodology for Mechanical Property Testing of Fuel Cladding Using a Expanded Plug Wedge Test

An expanded plug method was developed earlier for determining the tensile properties of irradiated fuel cladding. This method tests fuel rod cladding ductility by utilizing an expandable plug to radially stretch a small ring of irradiated cladding material. The circumferential or hoop strain is determined from the measured diametrical expansion of the ring. A developed procedure is used to convert the load circumferential strain data from the ring tests into material pseudo-stress-strain curves, from which material properties of the cladding can be extracted. However, several deficiencies existed in this expanded-plug test that can impact the accuracy of test results, such as that the large axial compressive stress resulted from the expansion plug test can potentially induce the shear failure mode of the tested specimen. Moreover, highly nonuniform stress and strain distribution in the deformed clad gage section and significant compressive stresses, induced by bending deformation due to clad bulging effect, will further result in highly nonconservative estimates of the mechanical properties for both strength and ductility of the tested clad. To overcome the aforementioned deficiencies associated with the current expansion plug test, systematic studies have been conducted. By optimizing the specific geometry designs, selecting the appropriate material for the expansionmore » plug, and adding new components into the testing system, a modified expansion plug testing protocol has been developed. A general procedure was also developed to determine the hoop stress in the tested ring specimen. A scaling factor, -factor, was used to convert the ring load Fring into hoop stress , and is written as _ = F_ring/tl , where t is the clad thickness and l is the clad length. The generated stress-strain curve agrees well with the associated tensile test data in both elastic and plastic deformation regions.« less
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  1. ORNL
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Journal of Nuclear Materials; Journal Volume: 446; Journal Issue: 446
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); High Temperature Materials Laboratory
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
Country of Publication:
United States
expansion plug test; nucelar fuel cladding; hoop stress