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Report No.
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PIE technologies for the study of stress corrosion cracking of reactor structural materials

Ugachi, Hirokazu; Nakano, Junichi; Nemoto, Yoshiyuki; Kondo, Keietsu; Miwa, Yukio; Kaji, Yoshiyuki; Tsukada, Takashi; Kizaki, Minoru; Omi, Masao; Shimizu, Michio

Irradiation assisted stress corrosion cracking (IASCC) is one of the critical concerns when stainless steel components have been in service in the light water reactors (LWRs) for a long period. In general, IASCC can be reproduced on the materials irradiated over a certain threshold fluence level of fast neutron by the post-irradiation examinations (PIEs) at hot laboratories. On the other hand, recently in the Japanese boiling water reactor (BWR) power plants, many incidents of stress corrosion cracking (SCC) of structural material such as the reactor core shrouds and primary loop recirculation (PLR) system piping were reported. In order to investigate the cause of SCC, PIEs at hot laboratories were carried out on the sample material extracted from BWR power plants. SCC studies require various kind of PIE techniques, because the SCC is caused by a complicated synergistic effects of stress and chemical environment on material that suffered degradations by irradiation and/or thermal aging. In this paper, we describe the PIE techniques adopted recently for our SCC studies, especially the crack growth measurement, uniaxial constant load (UCL) tensile test method, in-situ observation during slow strain rate test (SSRT) and several metallurgical test techniques using the FEtype transmission electron microscopy (FE-TEM), focused ion beam (FIB) processing technique, three Dimensional Atom Probe (3DAP) analysis and atomic force microscopy (AFM).

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