Fracture-mechanical properties of neutron irradiated ITER specification tungsten

A. Caganidze, A. Chauhan, Hans-Christian Schneider, Dmitry Terentyev, Gitte Borghmans, Jarir Aktaa

    Research outputpeer-review


    The work focuses on the investigation of the influence of neutron irradiation on the fracture mechani- cal properties of ITER specification-conform, stress-relieved tungsten bar. The irradiation of miniaturized Three-Point Bend specimens was performed inside the fuel channel of the Material Test High Flux BR2 reactor of SCK • CEN in Mol. An irradiation damage dose close to 1 dpa (in tungsten) was achieved at 800 °C with active temperature cooling and constant on-line temperature monitoring. Thick-wall stainless steel capsules were implemented for shielding the thermal neutrons in order to reduce Re transmuta- tion down to ~2 at.% (and 0.2 at.% Os). The quasi-static fracture mechanical experiments were carried out following ASTM E399 aiming at the determination of plane strain fracture toughness K Ic . The post irradiation examination of the specimens irradiated at 800 °C reveals severe material embrittlement. At T test = T irr = 800 °C, a deformation free brittle fracture is observed. The fractographic investigations show a mixture of brittle transgranular cleavage and intergranular fracture. With increasing the test tempera- ture above 10 0 0 °C, the fracture mode is changed from the brittle to a ductile one. Blunting of the notch tip leads to a suppression of the crack initiation and propagation and consequently no failure of the spec- imens was observed up to severe deflection levels. In some cases, however, a ductile crack growth with a characteristic dimple formation was identified, in addition. Based on the obtained results, the Ductile to Brittle Transition Temperature shift induced by the neutron irradiation at 800 °C is evaluated to be 600-625 °C.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number152761
    Pages (from-to)1-8
    Number of pages8
    JournalJournal of Nuclear Materials
    StatePublished - 8 Jan 2021

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