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Mechanical failure of high-burnup fuel rods with stress-relieved annealed and recrystallized M-MDA cladding under reactivity-initiated accident conditions

Mihara, Takeshi ; Udagawa, Yutaka  ; Sugiyama, Tomoyuki ; Amaya, Masaki  

To evaluate the effects of the hydride morphology and initial temperature of fuel cladding on the pellet-cladding mechanical interaction failure under reactivity-initiated accident (RIA) conditions, RIA-simulated experiments were performed on high-burnup fuels with stress-relieved annealed (SR) and recrystallized (RX) M-MDA$$^{TM}$$ cladding at room and high ($$sim$$ 280$$^{circ}$$C) temperatures. The results demonstrated that the failure-limit trend of RX-cladded fuels being lower than that of SR-cladded fuels for a similar hydrogen content holds up to at least about 700 wtppm. The observation of the fracture surfaces of failed RX cladding suggests a contribution of radially-oriented hydrides to the crack formation and/or penetration, which coincides with the aforementioned failure-limit trend. The temperature effect, namely the failure-limit rise at a high temperature, is evident irrespective of the hydride morphology, while the degree of the temperature effect decreases as the hydrogen content increases.

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Category:Nuclear Science & Technology

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