Experimental Simulation of Neutron Irradiation Damage in Reactor Pressure Vessel Steels
Degradation of reactor pressure vessel (RPV) steels due to neutron irradiation embrittlement is directly related to safety and life of the nuclear power plant (NPP). In order to ensure structural integrity and safe operation of NPP, surveillance programs are conducted to monitor and predict the changes in RPV materials. Availability of irradiated specimen from RPV or irradiation of specimens under simulated conditions of RPV for conducting fracture toughness tests remains a major problem in surveillance programs. In order to resolve this problem, various methods are adopted to experimentally simulate the effect of neutron irradiation on mechanical behavior of RPV steels using electron irradiation, thermal aging, strain hardening, combined quenching and hardening and pre-straining combined with heat treatment. This paper presents a review of the existing research on experimental simulation of neutron irradiation damage through various methodologies and discusses the future scope of their application in plant safety and life assessment of RPV’s.
M.H. Aliabadi, Qingfen Li, Li Li and F.-G. Buchholz
F. Hashmi et al., "Experimental Simulation of Neutron Irradiation Damage in Reactor Pressure Vessel Steels ", Key Engineering Materials, Vols. 324-325, pp. 1189-1192, 2006