Irradiation behavior of ground U(Mo) fuel with and without Si added to the matrix

Ann Leenaers, Sven Van den Berghe, Wouter Van Renterghem, Francois Charollais, Patrick Lemoine, Christophe Jarousse, Anton Rohrmoser, Winfried Petry

    Research outputpeer-review


    In the framework of the IRIS-TUM irradiation program, several full size, flat dispersion fuel plates containingground U(Mo) fuel kernels in an aluminum matrix, with and without addition of silicon (2.1 wt.%), have been irradiated in the OSIRIS reactor. The highest irradiated fuel plate (with an Al–Si matrix) reached a local maximum burnup of 88.3% 235U LEU-equivalent and showed a maximum thickness increase of 323 lm (66%) but remained intact. This paper reports the post irradiation examination results obtained on four IRIS-TUM plates. The evolution of the fission gas behavior in this fuel type from homogeneously dispersed nanobubbles to the eventual formation of large but apparently stable fission gas bubbles at the interface of the interaction layer and the fuel kernel is illustrated. It is also shown that the observed moderate, but positive effect of Si as inhibitor for the U(Mo)–Al interaction is related to the dispersion of this element in the interaction layer, although its concentration is very inhomogeneous and appears to be too low to fully inhibit interaction layer growth.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)41-52
    JournalJournal of Nuclear Materials
    Issue number1
    StatePublished - Apr 2011

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