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  1. In order to improve the accident tolerance of light water reactor (LWR) fuel, alternative cladding materials have been proposed to replace the currently used zirconium (Zr)-based alloys. Of these materials, there is a particular focus on iron-chromiumaluminum (FeCrAl) alloys because they exhibit slower oxidation kinetics in high-temperature steam than Zr-alloys. This should decrease the energy release due to oxidation and slow cladding consumption in the presence of high temperature steam. These alloys should also exhibit increased “coping time” in the event of an accident scenario by improving the mechanical performance at high temperatures, allowing greater flexibility to achieve core cooling.more » As a continuation of the development of these alloys, in-reactor irradiation testing of FeCrAl cladded fuel rods has started. In order to provide insight on the possible behavior of these fuel rods as they undergo irradiation in the Halden Boiling Water Reactor, engineering analysis has been performed using FeCrAl material models implemented into the BISON fuel performance code. This milestone report provides an update on the ongoing development of modeling capability to predict FeCrAl cladding fuel performance and to provide an early look at the possible behavior of planned in-reactor FeCrAl cladding experiments. In particular, this report consists of two separate analyses. The first analysis consists of fuel performance simulations of IFA-796 rod 4 and two segments of rod 3. These simulations utilize previously implemented material models for the C35M FeCrAl alloy and UO2 to provide a bounding behavior analysis corresponding to variation of the initial fuel cladding gap thickness within the fuel rod. The second analysis is an assessment of the fuel and cladding stress states after modification of the fuel creep model that is currently implemented in the BISON fuel performance code. Effects from modifying the fuel creep model were identified for the BISON simulations of the IFA-796 rod 4 experiment, but show that varying the creep model (within the range investigated here) only provide a minimal increase in the fuel radius and maximum cladding hoop stress. Continued investigation of fuel behavioral models will include benchmarking the modified fuel creep model against available experimental data, as well as an investigation of the role that fuel cracking will play in the compliance of the fuel. Correctly calculating stress evolution in the fuel is key to assessing fuel behavior up to gap closure and the subsequent deformation of the cladding due to PCMI. The inclusion of frictional contact should also be investigated to determine the axial elongation of the fuel rods for comparison with data from this experiment.« less
  2. The objective of this work is to understand the accumulation of radiation damage created by primary knock-on atoms (PKAs) of various energies, at 300 K and for a dose rate of 10-4 dpa/s in bulk tungsten using the object kinetic Monte Carlo (OKMC) method.
  3. Exposure of metallic structural materials to irradiation environments results in significant microstructural evolution, property changes and performance degradation, which limits the extended operation of current generation light water reactors and restricts the design of advanced fission and fusion reactors [1-8]. This effect of irradiation on materials microstructure and properties is a classic example of an inherently multiscale phenomenon, as schematically illustrated in Figure 1a. Pertinent processes range from the atomic nucleus to structural component length scales, spanning more than 15 orders of magnitude. Time scales bridge more than 22 orders of magnitude, with the shortest being less than a femtosecondmore » [1,8]. Further, the mix of radiation-induced features formed and the corresponding property degradation depend on a wide range of material and irradiation variables. This emphasizes the importance of closely integrating models with high-resolution experimental characterization of the evolving radiation- damaged microstructure, including measurements performed in-situ during irradiation. In this article, we review some recent successes through the use of closely coordinated modeling and experimental studies of the defect cluster evolution in irradiated body-centered cubic materials, followed by a discussion of outstanding challenges still to be addressed, which are necessary for the development of comprehensive models of radiation effects in structural materials.« less
  4. Under the anticipated operating conditions for demonstration magnetic fusion reactors beyond ITER, structural materials will be exposed to unprecedented conditions of irradiation, heat flux, and temperature. While such extreme environments remain inaccessible experimentally, computational modeling and simulation can provide qualitative and quantitative insights into materials response and complement the available experimental measurements with carefully validated predictions. For plasma facing components such as the first wall and the divertor, tungsten (W) has been selected as the best candidate material due to its superior high-temperature and irradiation properties. In this paper we provide a review of recent efforts in computational modeling ofmore » W both as a plasma-facing material exposed to He deposition as well as a bulk structural material subjected to fast neutron irradiation. We use a multiscale modeling approach –commonly used as the materials modeling paradigm– to define the outline of the paper and highlight recent advances using several classes of techniques and their interconnection. We highlight several of the most salient findings obtained via computational modeling and point out a number of remaining challenges and future research directions« less
  5. The topic of this communication pertains to defect formation in irradiated solids such as plasma-facing tungsten submitted to helium implantation in fusion reactor com- ponents, and nuclear fuel (metal and oxides) submitted to volatile ssion product generation in nuclear reactors. The purpose of this progress report is to describe ef- forts towards addressing the prediction of long-time evolution of defects via continuum cluster dynamics simulation. The di culties are twofold. First, realistic, long-time dynamics in reactor conditions leads to a non-dilute di usion regime which is not accommodated by the prevailing dilute, stressless cluster dynamics theory. Second, long-time dynamics callsmore » for a large set of species (ideally an in nite set) to capture all possible emerging defects, and this represents a computational bottleneck. Extensions beyond the dilute limit is a signi cant undertaking since no model has been advanced to extend cluster dynamics to non-dilute, deformable conditions. Here our proposed approach to model the non-dilute limit is to monitor the appearance of a spatially localized void volume fraction in the solid matrix with a bell shape pro le and insert an explicit geometrical bubble onto the support of the bell function. The newly cre- ated internal moving boundary provides the means to account for the interfacial ux of mobile species into the bubble, and the growth of bubbles allows for coalescence phenomena which captures highly non-dilute interactions. We present a preliminary interfacial kinematic model with associated interfacial di usion transport to follow the evolution of the bubble in any number of spatial dimensions and any number of bubbles, which can be further extended to include a deformation theory. Finally we comment on a computational front-tracking method to be used in conjunction with conventional cluster dynamics simulations in the non-dilute model proposed.« less
  6. The objective of this work is to study the damage accumulation in pure tungsten (W) subjected to neutron bombardment with a primary knock-on atom (PKA) spectrum corresponding to the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR), using the object kinetic Monte Carlo (OKMC) method.

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"Wirth, Brian"

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