Lifetime embrittlement of reactor core materials

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Over a core lifetime, the reactor materials Zircaloy-2, Zircaloy-4, and hafnium may become embrittled due to the absorption of corrosion- generated hydrogen and to neutron irradiation damage. Results are presented on the effects of fast fluence on the fracture toughness of wrought Zircaloy-2, Zircaloy-4, and hafnium; Zircaloy-4 to hafnium butt welds; and hydrogen precharged beta treated and weld metal Zircaloy-4 for fluences up to a maximum of approximately 150 x 10{sup 24} n/M{sup 2} (> 1 Mev). While Zircaloy-4 did not exhibit a decrement in K{sub IC} due to irradiation, hafnium and butt welds between hafnium and Zircaloy-4 are susceptible ... continued below

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38 p.

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Kreyns, P.H..; Bourgeois, W.F.; Charpentier, P.L.; Kammenzind, B.F.; Franklin, D.G. & White, C.J. August 1, 1994.

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  • Bettis Atomic Power Laboratory
    Publisher Info: Bettis Atomic Power Lab., West Mifflin, PA (United States)
    Place of Publication: West Mifflin, Pennsylvania

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Description

Over a core lifetime, the reactor materials Zircaloy-2, Zircaloy-4, and hafnium may become embrittled due to the absorption of corrosion- generated hydrogen and to neutron irradiation damage. Results are presented on the effects of fast fluence on the fracture toughness of wrought Zircaloy-2, Zircaloy-4, and hafnium; Zircaloy-4 to hafnium butt welds; and hydrogen precharged beta treated and weld metal Zircaloy-4 for fluences up to a maximum of approximately 150 x 10{sup 24} n/M{sup 2} (> 1 Mev). While Zircaloy-4 did not exhibit a decrement in K{sub IC} due to irradiation, hafnium and butt welds between hafnium and Zircaloy-4 are susceptible to embrittlement with irradiation. The embrittlement can be attributed to irradiation strengthening, which promotes cleavage fracture in hafnium and hafnium-Zircaloy welds, and, in part, to the lower chemical potential of hydrogen in Zircaloy-4 compared to hafnium, which causes hydrogen, over time, to drift from the hafnium end toward the Zircaloy-4 end and to precipitate at the interface between the weld and base-metal interface. Neutron radiation apparently affects the fracture toughness of Zircaloy-2, Zircaloy-4, and hafnium in different ways. Possible explanations for these differences are suggested. It was found that Zircaloy-4 is preferred over Zircaloy-2 in hafnium-to- Zircaloy butt-weld applications due to its absence of a radiation- induced reduction in K{sub IC} plus its lower hydrogen absorption characteristics compared with Zircaloy-2.

Physical Description

38 p.

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INIS; OSTI as DE96011413

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  • 11. international symposium on zirconium in the nuclear industry, Garmisch-Partenkirchen (Germany), 11-14 Sep 1995

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  • Other: DE96011413
  • Report No.: WAPD-T--3046
  • Report No.: CONF-950926--2
  • Grant Number: AC11-93PN38195
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 276975
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc666484

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  • August 1, 1994

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  • June 29, 2015, 9:42 p.m.

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  • Nov. 23, 2015, 4:37 p.m.

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Kreyns, P.H..; Bourgeois, W.F.; Charpentier, P.L.; Kammenzind, B.F.; Franklin, D.G. & White, C.J. Lifetime embrittlement of reactor core materials, article, August 1, 1994; West Mifflin, Pennsylvania. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc666484/: accessed December 16, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.