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Title: AFIP-7 Tomography – 2013 Status Report

This project seeks to assess the geometric stability of the U-Mo monolithic fuel system by evaluating the radiation-induced changes in the AFIP-7 experiment device. Neutron radiography and computed tomography (CT) provide valuable information about the post-irradiation condition of the fuel specimen. Tomographic reconstructions of the AFIP-7 fuel element will be analyzed to assess the geometric condition of the element after irradiation and provide information regarding the condition of the fuel, including gross geometric defects, bowing, twist, plate buckling, cracks, and other defects. The INL, in collaboration with Oregon State University (OSU), Missouri University of Science and Technology (Missouri S&T), and Real Time Tomography, is developing advanced neutron detector systems and tomographic reconstruction techniques to evaluate the AFIP-7 fuel element. Neutron computed tomography using the current neutron radiography technique available at the Neutron Radiography reactor (NRAD) is impractical due to the long time and high cost to produce a set of images for tomographic reconstruction. Advanced neutron radiography systems such as the micro-channel plate (MCP) detector and neutron computed radiography (CR) may reduce the time and cost of acquiring images for neutron CT. The MCP detector system tested at OSU and Missouri S&T provides neutron radiographs and has lower gamma sensitivitymore » compared to other digital acquisition image systems. However, some significant, but not prohibitive, challenges must be overcome to make its use for imaging nuclear fuel more practical. Images taken with the MCP require significant image processing to reduce distortions and correct for the dynamic detector response. Also, the small active area of the detector (~30 mm diameter) requires the collection and combination of several images of a specimen, which may become time-consuming. The MCP is tested in low gamma dose environments, but should also be tested in the gamma field at the INL. In addition to the MCP detector system, the INL is developing neutron computed radiography (CR), which uses the same foil transfer method currently employed at the NRAD, but replaces the film with a photostimulable storage phosphor imaging plate that is sensitive to the decay radiation from the activated transfer foils. Preliminary tests show that neutron CR provides lower, but comparable spatial resolution properties to film radiography images using the transfer method technique already employed at the NRAD. However, there are many factors that affect the spatial resolution of neutron CR that can be adjusted and possibly provide spatial resolution properties that exceed film radiography. The reduction in cost of neutron CR may be significant, which would make neutron imaging more appealing to programs that would benefit from this rare and valuable capability. Because transfer method neutron radiography is expensive and time-consuming, acquisition of a full set of radiographs for tomographic reconstruction is impractical. The INL is developing tomographic reconstruction techniques that require only a small set of radiographs of the AFIP-7 fuel element. These tomosynthesis techniques are tested using archived radiographs of TREAT experiments for CT as a proof of principle. These same techniques are applied to radiographs taken with an MCP detector of a mock-up of the AFIP-7 geometry. Acquisition angle should at least match the curvature of AFIP-7 plates. Lateral (in-plane) reconstruction resolution will be best when the projection angles include views at or near the desired reconstruction view angles. The ends of the fuel plates are angled at ±17.7° relative to the center of the plate. Increasing the number of projections is desirable, but given the constraint of minimizing the number of projections, the projection acquisition angle should also span at least ±17.7° to optimize the lateral resolution of the angled reconstruction planes used to visualize the gaps at the ends of the fuel plates. If possible, enough projections should be used within the initial acquisition angle of 35.4° (±17.7°) to bring the projection angular sampling closer to 1°. Further testing will determine a more specific recommendation for the number and angular distribution of neutron radiographs that will produce the highest quality tomographic reconstruction of the AFIP-7 fuel element.« less
Authors:
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. Idaho National Lab. (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
1236838
Report Number(s):
INL/EXT--13-30741
TRN: US1600288
DOE Contract Number:
AC07-05ID14517
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Idaho National Laboratory (INL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Nuclear Energy (NE)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
46 INSTRUMENTATION RELATED TO NUCLEAR SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY; 11 NUCLEAR FUEL CYCLE AND FUEL MATERIALS; URANIUM BASE ALLOYS; MOLYBDENUM ALLOYS; NEUTRON RADIOGRAPHY; COMPUTERIZED TOMOGRAPHY; PHYSICAL RADIATION EFFECTS; POST-IRRADIATION EXAMINATION; SPATIAL RESOLUTION; FUEL PLATES; COMPARATIVE EVALUATIONS; COST; MICROCHANNEL ELECTRON MULTIPLIERS; NEUTRON DETECTORS; ANGULAR DISTRIBUTION; IMAGE PROCESSING; BOWING; DEFECTS; CRACKS; RECOMMENDATIONS; SAMPLING; SENSITIVITY; STABILITY AFIP-7 Tomography