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Research Highlight

ORNL team receives innovation award for nuclear fuel cladding

A team led by ORNL received the 2019 Materials Performance Corrosion Innovation of the Year Award for the development and deployment of IronClad, a nuclear fuel cladding.

Topic: Nuclear Science and Technology

A team of ORNL scientists and industry partners received the 2019 Materials Performance Corrosion Innovation of the Year Award for the development and deployment of IronClad, an iron-chromium-aluminum (FeCrAl) cladding for nuclear fuel.

The team includes the Materials Science and Technology Division’s Kevin Field, Yukinori Yamamoto and Bruce Pint and the Reactor and Nuclear System Division’s Kurt Terrani. The ORNL scientists worked alongside General Electric and Global Nuclear Fuel to create an alloy that excludes zirconium, which is commonly used in light-water reactor cladding. The rapid development of the accident-tolerant fuel cladding took only six years and is now undergoing tests by industry in multiple commercial reactors.

NACE International’s Material Performance magazine presented 10 corrosion innovation awards during the CORROSION Conference & Expo in Nashville, Tennessee. The winners are chosen by a panel of corrosion-control experts.