|About this Abstract
||2022 TMS Annual Meeting & Exhibition
||Mechanical Behavior and Degradation of Advanced Nuclear Fuel and Structural Materials
||Phase-field Simulations of Fission Gas Bubbles in High Burnup UO2 to Inform Engineering-scale Fuel Performance Modeling
||Larry Aagesen, David Andersson, Sudipta Biswas, Michael Cooper, Kyle Gamble, Wen Jiang
|On-Site Speaker (Planned)
To improve the economics of commercial nuclear energy generation, U.S. utilities are currently seeking licensing approval to operate UO2 fuel to higher burnups. One significant safety issue that must be addressed to obtain approval is the potential for fine fragmentation/pulverization of the fuel during a loss-of-coolant accident (LOCA). It has been hypothesized that pulverization is caused by the rapid increase of pressure in fission gas bubbles in the high burnup region of the fuel during a LOCA. To better understand this phenomenon, a novel phase-field model of the fission gas bubble microstructure in UO2 has been developed and implemented in Idaho National Laboratory (INL)'s Marmot application for phase-field simulation of nuclear materials. Simulations of the bubble response to steady-state and transient conditions were conducted, and the results were used to inform a mechanistic model of pulverization in BISON, INL’s fuel performance simulation code.