|About this Abstract
||Materials Science & Technology 2020
||Advanced Characterization of Materials for Nuclear, Radiation, and Extreme Environments
||Unveiling High Temperature Damage Mechanisms via In-situ Digital Image Correlation of Chromium-coated Zirconium-based Fuel Claddings
||David Roache, Alex Jarama, Clifton Bumgardner, Frederick Heim, Morgan Price, Xiaodong Li
|On-Site Speaker (Planned)
Coated nuclear fuel claddings offer a promising, near-term solution to address the demand for next-generation, accident-tolerant fuel systems and possess superior mechanical properties and greater oxidation resistance compared to current cladding technology, allowing for improved performance during beyond design-basis accident conditions. Here, we unveil the high temperature failure mechanisms of chromium-coated zirconium alloys at temperatures up to 1200°C using a novel mechanical test rig coupled with in-situ three-dimensional digital image correlation and acoustic emissions sensing to monitor spatial strain and crack initiation / propagation during cladding expansion. Ex-situ optical and scanning electron microscopy were used to characterize crack propagation at various levels of strain and temperature, and a 2D fracture model was created to assess the effects of temperature and crack size on cladding fracture energy. We observed evolving fracture mechanisms beginning at temperatures as low as 300 °C, which will carry significant implications for their use in reactor environments.
||Planned: Publication outside of MS&T