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ASSIGNMENT NO 1
NAME: MARIA MUMTAZ ROLL NO.: 512 POST GRADUATE TRAINING PROGRAM SESSION 2011
with a half-life of about 4.0056 % 254000 years .27390 % 4510000000 years Uranium235 (U235) 0. however.468×109 years. Uranium-238 is the most stable isotope of uranium. natural uranium contains approximately 2. and traces of U-234. U-235.13×108 years. The following table contains the values for frequency and half-life time of natural uranium isotopes Isotope Frequency Half Life Time Uranium238 (U238) 99. and also 49% by 234U (since the latter is formed from the former) and about 2.2 percent uranium-235. In terms of radioactivity.0% of them by the235U. Uranium-235 has a half-life of about 7. and 49. roughly the age of the Earth.0055 percent. 48. about 49% of its alpha rays are emitted by each of 238U atom.7205 % 710000000 years Uranium234 (U234) 0.Isotopic Composition of Natural Uranium Like other elements.6 percent uranium-238.720 percent. Naturally occurring uranium is 99.2 percent uranium-234. For natural uranium. with uranium-235 (the energy producing isotope) making up about 0. and uranium-234 filling in the remainder at less than 0. uranium occurs in slightly differing forms known as isotopes. and uranium-234 has a half-life of about 2.48×105 years. These isotopes differ from each other in the number of neutron particles in the nucleus. Natural uranium as found in the Earth's crust is a mixture of three isotopes: uranium-238 (U238).2745 percent uranium-238.
preventing release of radioactive materials from the fuel to the coolant. to hold fuel rods together in fuel assemblies. and to hold fuel assemblies in place are all considered ‗core structural materials‘. embrittlement and creep. To support higher burnups. The core structural materials have to retain their functionality to maintain integrity of the fuel rods and fuel assemblies. so alloying is required. This section thus begins with cladding materials. niobium. Zirconium Alloys Zirconium is the most extensively used material for fuel cladding and assembly structure in both light and heavy water-cooled reactors. The materials used to encase the fuel in fuel rods. pressures. fuel cladding is exposed to extreme temperatures. such as dimensional change. as are the materials used in control rods and core monitoring instruments and their supporting structures. These four elements have very low neutron absorption. so they do not affect the neutron economy of the reactor. Its low neutron capture cross-section combined with relatively good corrosion and mechanical properties are among its superior advantages and led to its early use in nuclear reactors in preference to stainless steels. improved radiation resistant materials need to be developed that can withstand harsher irradiation environments and higher temperatures. and radiation levels. Consequently cladding material is the most critical in terms of performance and specification design windows. iron and chromium — with concentrations of not more than 1. is one of the most important considerations in selecting structural materials for a reactor core. Resistance to radiation damage. Zirconium and its alloys have a built-in anisotropy (directional dependence) due to their hexagonal close packed (HCP) lattice structure. resulting in direction dependent irradiation growth leading to cracking. Four major alloying elements are used — tin. Although high purity zirconium has very good corrosion resistance in water.Reactor Structure materials. it has low strength at high temperatures. . Such lattice structures can be adversely aligned during material fabrication.5%. but allow the zirconium alloy to meet the required engineering criteria for cladding and assembly components. their requirement and basic materials Core Structure: The core of a nuclear reactor is where the fuel is located and where nuclear fission reactions take place. More than other components.
the future challenge concerns applications for fuel rod cladding and fuel assembly components in fast reactors that use liquid metals as coolants. various kinds of alloyed steel or pre-stressed concrete. . V etc. and only special stainless steels can comply with these requirements. Cladding is usually used for concrete or carbon steel pressure vessels to improve their leak tightness or their resistance to corrosion. neutron scattering techniques have very high sensitivity to light impurities like hydrogen in the host matrix and thus are valuable tools to investigate these problems. fast reactors with liquid sodium coolant use austenitic steels and developments of these steels (in terms of percentage of Cr and Ni as well as the optimization of minor alloying elements such as P. Data providers should choose the appropriate option from the following multiple-choice menu: alloyed steel.Helium-vacancy interactions. hydrogen embrittlement. helium bubble formation and consequent void-swelling and dimensional changes are the important materials problems. corrosion etc. Thermal reactors Currently. Data providers should choose the appropriate option from the following multiple-choice menu: carbon steel.. W. Structural materials issues Currently operating and planned reactors use Zircaloys. Reactor vessel material Typically this is either carbon steel. alloyed steel. Some of the important issues pertain to hydrogen diffusion. Unlike other techniques. Fast reactor components operate at high temperatures (up to 750°C) and neutron irradiations (≥ 100 dpa). Si. concrete. thermal reactors use Zircaloy-4 (which has replaced Ziraloy-2) as well as ZrNb alloys. Reactor vessel cladding material It is the material that has been used for cladding the inner surface of the reactor vessel. stainless steel.Stainless Steels Although stainless steels are currently used for many core components. stainless steel. hydrides. Fast reactors Currently. austenitic/ferritic Stainless Steel.).
Data providers should choose the appropriate option from the multiple-choice menu: U metal. Zircaloy. Zr+Nb(2. Zircaloy and Inconel grid.5%). carbide compound.g. UO2/ThO2. Basically. Fuel material It is the material from which the fuel elements are made. Major materials for primary components of BWR The main components of the BWR fuel assembly are: . manganese steel.Stainless steel nozzles (upper and lower). however. Typical fuel materials are uranium metal and uranium dioxide. Magnox). UO2/PuO2. . stainless steel. zirconium alloy.Pressure channel material The specification of the material (alloy) used for the pressure channel wall should be chosen from the following multiple-choice menu: carbon steel.Fuel rod formed of Zircaloy tube and plugs. stainless steel spring. stainless steel. HTGR reactors use fuel particles coated with pyrolitic carbon and silicon carbide in two layers. or various zirconium alloys. zirconiummagnesium alloy. Data providers should choose the appropriate option from the multiple choice menu: magnesium alloy. UO2. and UO2/Er2O3. The materials for primary components of a typical BWR power plant are tabulated as under: Fuel Cladding Control Rods Moderator Coolant Pressure vessel shell Low enriched Uranium Oxide Zircaloy-2 205 Control rods of Boron Carbide Light Water Light Water Low alloy steel . there are three types of cladding – magnesium alloys (e. the material could also be a mixture of uranium dioxide and plutonium dioxide or thorium dioxide. and UO2 pellets (they may also include UO2 pellets with gadolinium). .Zircaloy water rod. Fuel clad material It is the material of the tube containing the fuel pellets or rods. stainless steel. UO2/MOX.
Al-Brass Carbon Steel General and Special Properties of Nuclear materials The general properties of a nuclear material consist of: Mechanical Strength Ductility Toughness Structural Integrity Fabricability Corrosion Resistance Heat Transfer properties Thermal properties Compatibility and Availability Cost Mechanical Strength of a material is its ability to withstand an applied stress without failure. It is characterized by the internal structure of the material flowing under shear stress.Pressure vessel cladding Loop piping Condenser tubes Containment Type 308L s. The stresses acting on the material cause deformation of the material. deformations and the forces acting on a material. stiffness and stability. mechanical strength plays an important role in selecting reactor materials. The applied stress may be tensile.s Type 304 s. while the intensity of the internal forces is called stress. and operation of a nuclear plant. construction. stiffness refers to the deformation or elongation. High mechanical strength is desirable because of its possible degradation due to radiation damage and the need to contain the radioactive liquids and fuel. Therefore. and stability refers to the ability to maintain its initial configuration. Preventing release of radioactive fission products is a major concern in the design. Deformation of the material is called strain. An example is when a piece of metal is drawn into a wire. High degrees of ductility occur due to metallic . Strength of materials is a subject which deals with loads. or shear. Ductility is the physical property of a material where it is capable of sustaining large permanent changes in shape without breaking. compressive. The strength of any material relies on three different type of analytical method: strength. A load applied to a mechanical member will induce internal forces within the member called stresses. where strength refers to the load carrying capacity.s Al-Bronze.
Availability is the ease with which material can be obtained and its cost. Structural engineers must ensure their designs satisfy given design criteria. For a constant amount of heat transfer. Material toughness is defined as the amount of energy per volume that a material can absorb before rupturing. Therefore. Fabricability is a measure of the ease with which a material can be worked and made into desirable shapes and forms. therefore. building sway must not cause discomfort to the occupants).g. desirable heat transfer properties in the selection of reactor materials.g. predicated on safety (e. fabricability is an important consideration in the manufacturing of these components. cost is an important factor in the selection of plant materials. A major portion of the cost is for plant material. Special properties of a nuclear material include: Neutronic properties Induced radioactivity Irradiation stability Chemical interaction Particle interdiffusion Ease of fuel reprocessing . Toughness requires a balance of strength and ductility. especially those used as core cladding and heat exchanger tubes are a major consideration. structures must not collapse without due warning) or serviceability and performance (e. It is also defined as the resistance to fracture of a material when stressed. Capital costs for building a typical nuclear facility can be millions of dollars. Toughness is the ability of a material to absorb energy and plastically deform without fracturing. Good heat transfer properties are desirable from the fuel boundary to the coolant in order that the heat produced will be efficiently transferred. Structural integrity deals with the analysis and design of structures that support or resist loads.bonds. a degraded heat transfer characteristic requires higher fuel temperature. which is not desirable. Many components of a nuclear reactor have very complicated shapes and forms and require very close tolerances. which are found predominantly in metals and leads to the common perception that metals are ductile in general. Therefore.
Otherwise the neutron balance in the core becomes disturbed and the nuclear reactor may terminate. for a neutron to interact with the fuel to fission out. Neutron activation is the main form of induced radioactivity. bubbles are formed and the density decreases which results in volumetric instability of the material. The nuclear materials should be designed in such a way that they can be easily handled for fuel reprocessing. Neutrons that have been slowed down through a neutron moderator (thermal neutrons) are more likely to be captured by nuclei than fast neutrons. which happens when free neutrons are captured by nuclei. Because free neutrons disintegrate within minutes outside of an atomic nucleus. Some nuclear properties should have a property of particle interdiffusion. Thermal Cyclic Growth It refers to the dimensional changes due to the repeated heating and cooling process. nuclear reactions. it should have the capability to inerdiffuse into the fuel and should not be reflected or scattered. Otherwise they will react with other materials any may cause corrosion and other problems. Irradiation Swelling It is the volumetric instability by induced inert gases. Most radioactivities does not induce other material to become radioactive. This new heavier isotope can be stable or unstable (radioactive) depending on the chemical element involved. For example. . structure materials must have a small thermal neutron absorption cross section. and high-energy reactions (such as in cosmic radiation showers or particle accelerator collisions). in thermal neutron reactors. Due to the gases like He or Kr. For example. Irradiation Creep It is the deformation due to slow and steady load at high temperatures and intense environments. Induced radioactivity occurs when a previously stable material has been made radioactive by exposure to specific radiation. neutron radiation can be obtained only from nuclear disintegrations.Neutronic properties include microscopic level neutron interactions of the materials. The nuclear material should not be chemically reactive.
e. the slope of the elastic (linear) portion of the curve is a property used to characterize materials and is known as the Young's modulus.Irradiation Growth It is defined as the irradiation induced changes in dimension in the absence of an applied stress. i. Stress Strain Diagram: The stress–strain curve is a graphical representation of the relationship between stress. elongation. derived from measuring the load applied on the sample. derived from measuring the deformation of the sample. compression. It is of concern both for fuel cladding and nuclear reactor structural components such as pressure tubes and calandria tubes. Stress–strain curve showing typical yield behavior for nonferrous alloys. Stress (σ) is shown as a function of strain (ε) 1: True elastic limit 2: Proportionality limit 3: Elastic limit 4: Offset yield strength . or distortion. The area under the elastic portion of the curve is known as the modulus of resilience. The slope of stress-strain curve at any point is called the tangent modulus. and strain.
Stress-strain diagram of a medium-carbon structural steel The area up to the yield point is termed the modulus of resilience. The diagram shown below is that for a medium-carbon structural steel. The stress-strain diagram differs in form for various materials. Metallic engineering materials are classified as either ductile or brittle materials. whereas brittle materials has a relatively small strain up to the point of rupture like cast iron and concrete. which are the same as stress or modulus of elasticity.Suppose that a metal specimen be placed in tension-compression-testing machine. A ductile material is one having relatively large tensile strains up to the point of rupture like structural steel and aluminum. and the total area up to fracture is termed the modulus of toughness. the normal stress and the strain can be obtained. 13. Knowing the original cross-sectional area and length of the specimen.05 mm/mm is frequently taken as the dividing line between these two classes. these are shown in Fig. The term ―resilience‖ alludes to the concept that up to the point of yielding. the total elongation over the gauge length is measured at each increment of the load and this is continued until failure of the specimen takes place. An arbitrary strain of 0. The term ―modulus‖ is used because the units of strain energy per unit volume are N-m/m3 or N/m2. As the axial load is gradually increased in increments. the material is unaﬀected by the .
But when the strain exceeds the yield point. The modulus of resilience is then the quantity of energy the material can absorb without suﬀering damage. . Similarly.applied stress and upon unloading will return to its original shape. Materials showing good impact resistance are generally those with high moduli of toughness. the modulus of toughness is the energy needed to completely fracture the material. so that some residual strain will persist even after unloading. the material is deformed irreversibly.
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