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Development of a Modeling Approach to Describe Thermal Conductivity of Prototypic Sic-sic Tubes for Lwr Fuel Cladding

by Jose' D Arregui Mena, Takaaki Koyanagi, Hsin Wang, Yutai Kato
Publication Type
ORNL Report
Publication Date

SiC-SiC composites are a promising material intended to be used as a for fuel cladding for Light Water Reactors (LWRs). This material has a high steam oxidation resistance, high strength and low neutron cross section. Thermal conductivity is one of the most important physical properties for assessing the performance of SiC based fuel cladding. However, there is a significant lack of data for tube materials because measurement is challenging owing to the specimen geometry. This report summarizes the modeling methodology, experimental methodologies and software that will be used to study the thermal conductivity of different SiC-SiC composite tubes. The proposed experiments described here, are directed to create a baseline of thermal conductivity values to validate experimental simulations. In order to obtain the thermal conductivity of these materials the Laser Flash Analysis (LFA) will be implemented to obtain the thermal diffusivity of flat and sections of round shape specimens. Thermal diffusivity experiments will be complemented by Finite Element Method (FEM) simulations and a branch of this methodology known as Image-Based Finite Element Method (IBFEM). The FEM simulations will help to identify the possible limitations of experimental measurements in round shape specimens and verify the results of experiments in flat shape samples. The results of the IBFEM will help to quantify the possible effects of porosity in SiC-SiC composites. The findings of the aforementioned activities will be also applied to SiC-SiC neutron irradiated tube samples in order to capture the damage produced by this ageing mechanism.