Research Papers

Assessment of Candidate Fuel Cladding Alloys for the Canadian Supercritical Water-Cooled Reactor Concept

[+] Author and Article Information
D. Guzonas

Chalk River Laboratories, Canadian Nuclear Laboratories,
Chalk River, ON K0J 1J0, Canada
e-mail: david.guzonas@cnl.ca

M. Edwards

Chalk River Laboratories, Canadian Nuclear Laboratories,
Chalk River, ON K0J 1J0, Canada
e-mail: matthew.edwards@cnl.ca

W. Zheng

CanmetMATERIALS, Natural Resources Canada,
183 Longwood Road South, Hamilton, ON L8P 0A5, Canada
e-mail: Wenyue.Zheng@NRCan-RNCan.gc.ca

Manuscript received May 27, 2015; final manuscript received August 14, 2015; published online December 9, 2015. Assoc. Editor: Thomas Schulenberg.

ASME J of Nuclear Rad Sci 2(1), 011016 (Dec 09, 2015) (8 pages) Paper No: NERS-15-1098; doi: 10.1115/1.4031502 History: Received May 27, 2015; Accepted August 29, 2015

Selecting and qualifying a fuel cladding material for the Canadian supercritical water-cooled reactor (SCWR) concept remains the most significant materials challenge to be overcome. The peak cladding temperature in the Canadian SCWR concept is predicted to be as high as 800°C. While advanced materials show promise for future deployment, currently, the best options available are austenitic stainless steels and nickel-based alloys. Many of these alloys were extensively studied for use as fuel cladding materials in the 1960s, as part of programs to develop nuclear superheated steam reactors. After extensive out-of-pile testing and consideration of the existing data, five alloys (347 SS, 310 SS, Alloy 800H, Alloy 625, and Alloy 214) were selected for more detailed assessment using a combination of literature surveys and targeted testing to fill in major knowledge gaps. Wherever possible, performance criteria were developed for key materials properties. This paper summarizes the methodology used for the assessment and presents the key results, which show that 310 SS, Alloy 800H, and Alloy 625 would all be expected to give acceptable performance in the Canadian SCWR concept.

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Fig. 1

Canadian SCWR fuel channel horizontal cross section (right) and vertical cross section (left), showing central flow tube, fuel elements, wire wrap, inner liner tube, insulator tube, outer liner tube, and pressure tube

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Fig. 2

Weight change as a function of density for A286, 304 SS, 310 SS, and Alloy 625 exposed to 600°C SCW for 1000 hr

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Fig. 3

Weight gain as a function of exposure time data for Alloy 800H exposed to SCW at 500–800°C; data from Table 1. The solid line is a linear least-squares fit to the data; the dashed line is the predicted weight gain based on Eq. (8)

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Fig. 4

Arrhenius plot for Alloy 800H for the linear (long-term) portion of the weight change data




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