Physics and Technology of Nuclear Materials - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780080326016, 9781483150574

Physics and Technology of Nuclear Materials

1st Edition

Authors: Ioan Ursu
eBook ISBN: 9781483150574
Imprint: Pergamon
Published Date: 1st January 1985
Page Count: 540
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Physics and Technology of Nuclear Materials presents basic information regarding the structure, properties, processing methods, and response to irradiation of the key materials that fission and fusion nuclear reactors have to rely upon. Organized into 12 chapters, this book begins with selectively several fundamentals of nuclear physics. Subsequent chapters focus on the nuclear materials science; nuclear fuel; structural materials; moderator materials employed to ""slow down"" fission neutrons; and neutron highly absorbent materials that serve in reactor's power control. Other chapters explore the cooling agents; fluids carrying the energy to its final stage of conversion into electric power; thermal and biological shielding materials; some outstanding reactor components; and irradiated fuel reprocessing. The last two chapters deal with nuclear material quality inspection by destructive and non-destructive methods, and specific materials envisaged for use in future thermonuclear reactors. This monograph will be helpful for a wide range of specialists wishing to gear their research and development, education, and other activities toward the field of nuclear power and nuclear technology.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1. Elements of Nuclear Reactor Physics

1.1. Structure of Atomic Nuclei. Binding Energy

1.2. Nuclear Transformations

1.3. Nuclear Fission

1.4. The Nuclear Reactor

1.4.1. Chain Fission Reaction

1.4.2. Structure and Characteristics of a Nuclear Reactor

1.4.3. Classification of Reactors. Types of Reactors

1.5. Isotopic Enrichment of Nuclear Materials


Chapter 2. Structure and Properties of Materials

2.1. Microscopic Structure of Materials

2.1.1. Structure of Crystalline Solids

2.1.2. Phase Transitions

2.2. Lattice Defects

2.2.1. Types of Defects

2.2.2. Point Defects

2.2.3. Dislocations and Creep

2.3. Influence of Physical and Chemical Aggressiveness on Material Properties

2.4. Material Constants

2.5. Influence of Processing on Material Properties

2.6. Irradiation Effects on Materials

2.6.1. Neutron Effect

2.6.2. Thermal and Displacement Spikes

2.6.3. Other Types of Interaction

2.6.4. Mobility and Annihilation of Defects

2.6.5. Methods to Limit the Irradiation Effects

2.6.6. Alterations in Material Properties

2.6.7. Testing Materials at Irradiation

2.7. Selecting Materials of Nuclear Interest


Chapter 3. Fuel Materials

3.1. Uranium

3.1.1. Properties

3.1.2. Processing Methods

3.1.3. Dimensional Stability

3.1.4. Uranium Alloys and Compounds

3.1.5. Uranium Enrichment in 235U

3.2. Plutonium

3.2.1. Properties

3.2.2. Processing Methods

3.2.3. Dimensional Stability

3.2.4. Corrosion Behavior

3.2.5. Plutonium Compounds

3.3. Thorium

3.3.1. Properties

3.3.2. Processing Methods

3.3.3. Dimensional Stability under Irradiation

3.3.4. Corrosion Behavior

3.3.5. Thorium Alloys and Compounds



Chapter 4. Structural Materials

4.1. General

4.2. Aluminum

4.2.1. Processing Methods

4.2.2. Properties

4.2.3. Irradiation Effects

4.2.4. Corrosion Resistance

4.3. Zirconium

4.3.1. Manufacturing Techniques

4.3.2. Corrosion Resistance

4.3.3. Zirconium Alloys

4.3.4. Irradiation Effects on Zirconium and Its Alloys

4.3.5. Hydrogen Absorption and Diffusion

4.4. Stainless Steels

4.4.1. Properties

4.4.2. Irradiation Effects

4.5. Ferritic Steels

4.5.1. Properties

4.5.2. Irradiation Behavior

4.6. Magnesium Alloys

4.7. Other Structural Materials

4.8. Neutron Irradiation-Induced Changes in the Mechanical Properties of Structural Materials



Chapter 5. Moderator Materials

5.1. General

5.2. Nuclear Graphite

5.2.1. Properties

5.2.2. Corrosion Resistance

5.2.3. Irradiation Effects

5.2.4. Preparation of Nuclear Graphite

5.3. Natural (Light) Water

5.3.1. Water Activation

5.3.2. Activation of Impurities

5.3.3. Water Radiolysis

5.4. Heavy Water

5.4.1. Irradiation Properties and Effects

5.4.2. Heavy Water Production

5.5. Beryllium

5.5.1. Properties

5.5.2. Corrosion Resistance

5.5.3. Irradiation Effects

5.6. Metal Hydrides


Chapter 6. Materials for Reactor Reactivity Control

6.1. General

6.2. Reactor Control and Shut-Down Systems

6.3. Boron-Based Control Materials

6.4. Cadmium-Based Alloys

6.5. Hafnium

6.6. Rare Earths-Based Control Materials


Chapter 7. Coolant Materials

7.1. General

7.2. Removal of Heat from Nuclear Reactors

7.3. Gaseous Coolants

7.3.1. Carbon Dioxide

7.3.2. Helium

7.3.3. Nitrogen Oxide N2O4

7.4. Liquid Coolants

7.4.1. Light Water and Heavy Water

7.4.2. Organic Liquids

7.4.3. Liquid Metals

7.4.4. Molten Salts


Chapter 8. Shielding Materials

8.1. General

8.2. Radiation Effects on Shielding Materials

8.3. Shields

8.3.1. Thermal Shielding Materials

8.3.2. Biological Shielding Materials


Chapter 9. Nuclear Fuel Elements

9.1. Design of Fuel Elements

9.1.1. Irradiation-Induced Phenomena in Fuel Elements

9.1.2. Temperature Distribution in Fuel Elements

9.1.3. Structural Changes in Fuel

9.1.4. Fission Gas Release

9.1.5. Fission Gas Pressure

9.1.6. Fuel Swelling

9.1.7. Mechanical Behavior of Fuel and Clad during Irradiation

9.2. Classification of Fuel Elements

9.2.1. Metallic Fuel Elements

9.2.2. Ceramic Fuel Elements

9.2.3. Ceramic Fuel Elements for Fast Reactors

9.2.4. Dispersed Fuel Elements

9.3. Manufacture of Fuel Elements

9.3.1. Manufacture of Metallic Fuel Elements

9.3.2. Manufacture of Ceramic Fuel Elements

9.3.3. Manufacture of Dispersed Fuel Elements

9.3.4. Manufacture of Fuel Elements for Fast Reactors


Chapter 10. Nuclear Material Recovery from Irradiated Fuel and Recycling

10.1. General

10.2. Role and Tasks of Nuclear Material Recovery and Recycling

10.3. Classification of Irradiated Fuel Reprocessing Methods

10.4. Solvent Extraction

10.4.1. Basic Principles of Metal Separation by Extraction

10.4.2. Nature and Chemical Function of Extraction Solvents

10.4.3. Solvent Diluents and Their Role

10.4.4. Solvent Stability

10.3. Uranium and Plutonium in aqueous Solution

10.6. Solvent Extraction Processes

10.6.1. The Redox Process

10.6.2. The Butex Process

10.6.3. The Purex Process

10.6.4. The Thorex Process

10.7. Equipment for Solvent Extraction

10.7.1. Continuous Exchange Extractors

10.7.2. Separate Column Plants

10.7.3. Selection Criteria for Extraction Equipment

10.8. Industrial-scale Implementation of the Solvent Extraction Methods for Reprocessing of the Irradiated Nuclear Fuel Resulting from Nuclear Power Plants

10.8.1. General

10.8.2. General Description of the Process

10.8.3. Specifications for Final Products

10.8.4. Losses in the Process — Admitted Values

10.9. Radioactive Wastes

10.9.1. Classification

10.9.2. Gaseous Wastes

10.9.3. Liquid Wastes

10.9.4. Solid Wastes

10.9.5. Organic Liquid Wastes

10.10.Irradiated Fuel Transport

10.11.Irradiated Fuel Storage

10.12.Recycling of the Recovered Fissile Materials

10.12.1. Plutonium Recycling

10.12.2. Plutonium Isotope Composition and Related Radioprotection Problems

10.12.3. Uranium Recycling

10.12.4. Choice of Matrix Material for Manufacture of Dispersed Fuels


Chapter 11. Quality Control of Nuclear Materials

11.1. General

11.2. Non-Destructive Control Methods

11.2.1. Visual Methods

11.2.2. Thermal Methods

11.2.3. Liquid Penetrant Methods

11.2.4. Magnetic Particle Methods

11.2.5. Defectoscopic Methods with Penetrant Radiations

11.2.6. Ultrasonic Methods

11.2.7. Eddy Current Methods

11.2.8. Tightness Inspection

11.3. Destructive Control Methods

11.3.1. Composition

11.3.2. Mechanical Properties

11.3.3. Metallographical Methods

11.3.4. Monitoring of Corrosion Effects

11.4. Quality Control in the Manufacture of Nuclear Fuel Elements

11.5. Irradiation Effects Inspection of Nuclear Materials

11.5.1. Non-Destructive Testing

11.5.2. Destructive Testing

11.6. Safeguards of Nuclear Materials

11.6.1. Safeguards of Nuclear Fuel Cycle

11.6.2. Inspection Methods in the Nuclear Fuel Cycle


Chapter 12. Materials for Fusion Reactors

12.1. Thermonuclear Fusion Reaction

12.2. Physical Processes in Fusion Reactors

12.2.1. Basic Processes

12.2.2. Fusion Reactor Projects

12.3. Fuel Materials

12.3.1. Fuel Cycle

12.3.2. Tritium

12.3.3. Fuel Supply

12.3.4. Fuel Materials for Hybrid Reactors

12.4. Materials for Blanket and Cooling System

12.4.1. Lithium

12.4.2. Lithium Compounds and Their Properties

12.4.3. Beryllium

12.4.4. Corrosion Caused by Liquid Lithium and Its Molten Salts

12.5. Structural Materials

12.5.1. Refractory Metals and Their Alloys

12.5.2. Steels

12.5.3. Nickel-Based Alloys

12.5.4. Aluminum-Based Materials

12.5.5. Carbon-Based Materials

12.5.6. Other Materials

12.6. Materials for Magnetic Devices

12.6.1. Superconducting Materials

12.6.2. Cryogenic Materials

12.7. Specific Problems of Material Irradiation

12.7.1. Erosion of the Combustion Chamber Wall Surface

12.7.2. Influence of Irradiation on the Properties of Superconducting Materials

12.7.3. Radioactive Materials


Appendix 1 Equivalence of Some Usual Measurements Units to Those in the International System (IS)

Appendix 2 Characteristics of Major Reactor Types

Appendix 3 Fuel Material Enrichment for Various Types of Reactors

Appendix 4 Electronic Configuration of Elements

Appendix 5 Some Properties of Elements

Appendix 6 Irradiation Testing of Structural Materials for CANDU - 600 Nuclear Power Station

Appendix 7 Neutron Cross-Sections

Appendix 8.I. Quality Requirements for Heavy Water Used as Moderator in Nuclear Reactors

8.II Measurement Methods and Performances in Determining Deuterium Concentration in Hydrogen, H2O, NH3 and H2S

8.III Measurement Methods and Current Performances for the Determination of the H2/N2 Ratio in Gaseous Phase, in the 3:1 Range

8.IV Turbine Flowmeters

Appendix 9 The Main Fission Products of Thermal Neutrons-Irradiated Uranium, Which Determine the Fuel Radioactivity

Appendix 10 Crystalline Structures and Magnetic Properties of Some Uranium Compounds

Appendix 11 Properties of Materials, of Chief Interest in Fuel Element Design

Appendix 12 Nuclear Reactors Types and Net Electric Power, as Registered at the International Atomic Energy Agency

Appendix 13 Hydrometallurgy of Uranium

Appendix 14 Nuclear Fuel Cycles



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About the Author

Ioan Ursu