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PROtect SiC: Framatomes Revolutionary ATF Solution for Improved Performance and Safety in LWRs

Loys Duquesne Kiran Nimishakavi Christophe Lorrette 1 
1 LTMEx - Laboratoire des Technologies des Matériaux EXtrêmes
SRMA - Service des Recherches Métallurgiques Appliquées : DEN/DMN/SRMA
Abstract : In response to Fukushima Daiichi accident, the nuclear industry across the world initiated research programs aimed at developing a new generation of safer fuel systems which will maximize safety and provide economic benefits to utilities. Framatomes strategy regarding Enhanced Accident tolerant Fuel (EATF) relies on a two-phased approach enabling the balancing of benefits with speed to market. The first phase consists of a near term evolutionary solution improving safety and fuel cycle economics while being compliant with insertion of batches by 2025. A second, longer-term solution, SiC/SiC fuel rods, aimed to offer drastic improvements during beyond design basis accidents. In order to contain radioactive material in fuel rods even in beyond-design basis accidents, where the core temperature can rise in excess of 1200°C, Framatome is developing a Silicon Carbide (SiC) based cladding solution, PROtect SiC. This advanced cladding offers high strength and reduced oxidation, along with other favorable attributes in both normal and accident conditions, thus proving to be a potential replacement to traditional zirconium based cladding. In the past year, Framatome and CEA jointly made systematic improvements to their 2014 sandwich design to address critical technical challenges such as hydrothermal corrosion, hermeticity and sealing the ends of the cladding tube. Further efforts are focused on continuing testing and evaluation of candidate solutions in test reactors. This paper outlines the irradiation testing being planned on SiC for accelerated development and implementation in the current fleet of commercial light water reactors. The plan includes loop testing of SiC fuel rods in Advanced Test Reactor ATF-2, followed by transient testing of both fresh and irradiated fuel at Transient Reactor Test facility (TREAT). Additionally, this paper presents qualitative analysis of safety benefits associated with SiC cladding in both design basis and beyond design basis accidents.
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Submitted on : Friday, November 11, 2022 - 10:00:31 PM
Last modification on : Sunday, November 13, 2022 - 3:24:24 AM


  • HAL Id : cea-03849594, version 1


Loys Duquesne, Kiran Nimishakavi, Christophe Lorrette. PROtect SiC: Framatomes Revolutionary ATF Solution for Improved Performance and Safety in LWRs. Global TOP FUEL 2019, Sep 2019, SEATTLE, United States. pp.Proceeding auteur N. ⟨cea-03849594⟩



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