Thermal creep properties of virgin and irradiated cladding tubes made of Ti-stabilised DIN 1.4970 (15-15Ti) austenitic stainless steel

Research outputpeer-review


This paper presents assessments performed on a large database of virgin material and irradiated material thermal creep data from uniaxial and pressurised DIN 1.4970 Ti-stabilised austenitic stainless steel i.e. EN X10NiCrMoTiB15–15 or ‘15-15Ti’ cladding tubes. The data base incorporates multi-heat data from uniaxial and bi-axial (internal pressure) creep tests conducted during the fast reactor R&D program of the DeBeNe (Deutschland-Belgium-Netherlands) consortium between the 1960s to the late 1980s together with more recent data, for example, from the European projects MATTER and PATRICIA and the EERA JPNM pilot project TASTE. The data comprises of a virgin material data base and a data base with irradiated creep data. The virgin material data comprises of time-to-rupture and time-to-0.2% creep strain in a temperature range of 600–800°C and covers a large range of stresses. The irradiated data base has less data and does not cover all material heats tested for the virgin material properties. The irradiation conditions are also different depending on the test reactor specifics and the irradiation campaign targets. The attained ‘irradiation damage’ in displacements per atom (DPA) for the irradiated materials range from 0.1 up to 38.1. Un-irradiated ‘reference material’ models for tensile strength and creep strength are constructed from the current-state of the art literature data and more recent results from the Sandvik 24% cold worked 1515–Ti cladding tube currently used as the main material batch studied at SCK CEN. The tensile strength model is used throughout the paper for normalizing creep strengths by the tensile properties, needed when applying the Wilshire (WE) creep model. Time factors (TF), stress factors (SF) and temperature ratio factors (TRF) are calculated for different material states for describing the impact of heat treatments, (virgin and irradiated) and irradiation conditions. This initial study targets to give estimates for the thermal creep properties of cladding tubes with a cold work range of 16–24% in a non-annealed state, as it is the preferred option for future designs according to the state-of-the art knowledge base. However, the main bulk of the available data on irradiated material is on claddings with a cold work range of 0-16% with and without annealing and at various levels of irradiation damage, thus leading to the need for estimation by interpolation and extrapolation assuming that irradiation damage levels and trends, e.g. time reduction factors found on a lower cold worked material can also be applied on materials with higher cold work levels. The results of the assessments clearly show relative strength differences between chosen material heats and heat treatments and has enabled constructing simple multilinear models for estimating the life of irradiated material. The models show that low creep test temperatures (and irradiation temperatures), low stress levels, low levels of cold work and high irradiation doses are increasing the detrimental difference between the specific material condition and the reference material. Also, it was found that the general level of life reduction (time factor TF and stress factor SF) for irradiation damaged material failure, in relation to the reference material failure, roughly coincides the corresponding values of time to 0.2% creep strain for virgin material. The estimated ‘failure creep temperature limits’ for 30 000 hours of service are studied and compared for both virgin and irradiated materials at a reference stress level of 1/3 of the tensile strength (at temperature).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)284-293
Number of pages10
JournalMaterials At High Temperatures
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2024


This project has received funding from the Euratom research and training programme 2019-2020 under grant agreement No 945077.

FundersFunder number
Horizon Europe945077
Horizon Europe

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Ceramics and Composites
    • Condensed Matter Physics
    • Mechanics of Materials
    • Mechanical Engineering
    • Metals and Alloys
    • Materials Chemistry

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