Microstructure of 50 year old SCK•CEN BR1 research reactor fuel

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Abstract

The BR1 research reactor at SCK•CEN, Mol (Belgium) has a graphite core matrix loaded with fuel rods consisting of a natural uranium slug in an aluminum cladding. Fabrication reports show the application of a so-called AlSi bonding layer and an U(Al,Si)3 anti-diffusion layer on the natural uranium fuel slug to limit the interaction between the uranium fuel and aluminum cladding. The BR1 reactor is in operation since 1956 and still contains its original fuel rods. After more than 50 years irradiation at low temperature, the integrity of some of the fuel rods is investigated. The microstructure of the fuel, bonding and anti-diffusion layer and cladding is analysed using optical microscopy (OM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and electron microprobe analysis (EPMA).

Details

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe RERTR-2007 International Meeting on reduced enrichment for research and test reactors
Place of PublicationArgonne, Illinois, United States
Publication statusPublished - 23 Sep 2007
EventThe RERTR-2007 International meeting on reduced enrichment for research and test reactors - Prague, Czech Republic
Duration: 23 Sep 200727 Sep 2007

Conference

ConferenceThe RERTR-2007 International meeting on reduced enrichment for research and test reactors
Country/TerritoryCzech Republic
CityPrague
Period2007-09-232007-09-27

Keywords

  • Research reactor fuel natural uranium BR1

ID: 204065