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Report No.
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Rock-like oxide fuels and their burning in LWRs

Yamashita, Toshiyuki; Kuramoto, Kenichi; Akie, Hiroshi  ; Nakano, Yoshihiro ; Shirasu, Noriko  ; Nakamura, Takehiko ; Kusagaya, Kazuyuki*; Omichi, Toshihiko*

Research on the plutonium rock-like oxide (ROX) fuels and their once-through burning in light water reactors has been performed to establish an option for utilizing and disposing effectively the excess plutonium. The ROX fuel is a sort of the inert matrix fuels and consists of mineral-like compounds such as yttria stabilized zirconia, spinel and corundum. A particle-dispersed fuel was devised to reduce damage by heavy fission fragments. Some preliminary results on swelling, fractional gas release and microstructure change for five ROX fuels were obtained from the irradiation test and successive post-irradiation examinations. Inherent disadvantages of the Pu-ROX fuel cores could be improved by adding 238U or 232Th as resonant materials, and all improved cores showed a nearly the same characteristics as the conventional UO2 core during transient conditions. The threshold enthalpy of the ROX fuel rod failure was found to be comparable to the fresh UO2 rod by pulse-irradiation tests simulating reactivity initiated accident conditions.

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Category:Nuclear Science & Technology

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