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2D simulation of hydride blister cracking during a RIA transient with the fuel code ALCYONE

Jérôme Sercombe 1, * Thomas Helfer 1 Eric Federici 1 David Leboulch 2 Thomas Le Jolu 2 Arthur Hellouin de Ménibus 2 Christian Bernaudat 3
* Corresponding author
1 LSC - Laboratoire de Simulation du Comportement des Combustibles
SESC - Service d'Etudes de Simulation du Comportement du combustibles : DEN/DEC/SESC
2 LC2M - Laboratoire d'Etude du Comportement Mécanique des Matériaux
SRMA - Service des Recherches Métallurgiques Appliquées : DEN/DMN/SRMA
Abstract : This paper presents 2D generalized plain strain simulations of the thermo-mechanical response of a pellet fragment and overlying cladding during a RIA transient. A fictitious hydride blister of increasing depth (25 to 90% of the clad thickness) is introduced at the beginning of the calculation. When a predetermined hoop stress is exceeded at the clad outer surface, radial cracking of the blister is taken into account in the simulation by a modification of the mechanical boundary conditions. The hoop stress criterion is based on Finite Element simulations of laboratory hoop tensile tests performed on highly irradiated samples with a through-wall hydride blister. The response of the remaining clad ligament (beneath the cracked blister) to the pellet thermal expansion is then studied. The simulations show that plastic strains localize in a band orientated at $\sim$45°to the radial direction, starting from the blister crack tip and ending at the clad inner wall. This result is in good agreement with the ductile shear failures of the clad ligaments observed post-RIA transients. Based on a local plastic strain failure criterion in the shear band, ALCYONE simulations are then used to define the enthalpy at failure in function of the blister depth.
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Jérôme Sercombe, Thomas Helfer, Eric Federici, David Leboulch, Thomas Le Jolu, et al.. 2D simulation of hydride blister cracking during a RIA transient with the fuel code ALCYONE. EPJ N - Nuclear Sciences & Technologies, EDP Sciences, 2016, 2, pp.22. ⟨10.1051/epjn/2016016⟩. ⟨cea-01350715⟩

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