Prediction of minimum UO/sub 2/ particle size based on thermal stress initiated fracture model. [LMFBR] [electronic resource].
- Cambridge, Mass. : Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1976.
Oak Ridge, Tenn. : Distributed by the Office of Scientific and Technical Information, U.S. Dept. of Energy.
- Physical Description:
- Pages: 93 : digital, PDF file
- Additional Creators:
- Massachusetts Institute of Technology
United States. Department of Energy. Office of Scientific and Technical Information
- An analytic study was employed to determine the minimum UO/sub 2/ particle size that could survive fragmentation induced by thermal stresses in a UO/sub 2/-Na Fuel Coolant Interaction (FCI). A brittle fracture mechanics approach was the basis of the study whereby stress intensity factors K/sub I/ were compared to the fracture toughness K/sub IC/ to determine if the particle could fracture. Solid and liquid UO/sub 2/ droplets were considered each with two possible interface contact conditions; perfect wetting by the sodium or a finite heat transfer coefficient. The analysis indicated that particles below the range of 50 microns in radius could survive a UO/sub 2/-Na fuel coolant interaction under the most severe temperature conditions without thermal stress fragmentation. Environmental conditions of the fuel-coolant interaction were varied to determine the effects upon K/sub I/ and possible fragmentation. The underlying assumptions of the analysis were investigated in light of the analytic results. It was concluded that the analytic study seemed to verify the experimental observations as to the range of the minimum particle size due to thermal stress fragmentation by FCI. However the method used when the results are viewed in light of the basic assumptions indicates that the analysis is crude at best, and can be viewed as only a rough order of magnitude analysis. The basic complexities in fracture mechanics make further investigation in this area interesting but not necessarily fruitful for the immediate future.
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