Microstructure and mechanical properties of FeCrAl alloys under heavy ion irradiations

Aydogan E. , Weaver J. S. , Maloy S. A. , El-Atwani O., Wang Y. Q. , Mara N. A.

JOURNAL OF NUCLEAR MATERIALS, vol.503, pp.250-262, 2018 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 503
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.jnucmat.2018.03.002
  • Page Numbers: pp.250-262


FeCrAl ferritic alloys are excellent cladding candidates for accident tolerant fuel systems due to their high resistance to oxidation as a result of formation of a protective Al2O3 scale at high temperatures in steam. In this study, we report the irradiation response of the 10Cr and 13Cr FeCrAl cladding tubes under Fe2+ ion irradiation up to similar to 16 dpa at 300 degrees C. Dislocation loop size, density and characteristics were determined using both two-beam bright field transmission electron microscopy and on-zone scanning transmission electron microscopy techniques. 10Cr (C06M2) tube has a lower dislocation density, larger grain size and a slightly weaker texture compared to the 13Cr (C36M3) tube before irradiation. After irradiation to 0.7 dpa and 16 dpa, the fraction of <100> type sessile dislocations decreases with increasing Cr amount in the alloys. It has been found that there is neither void formation nor a' precipitation as a result of ion irradiations in either alloy. Therefore, dislocation loops were determined to be the only irradiation induced defects contributing to the hardening. Nanoindentation testing before the irradiation revealed that the average nanohardness of the C36M3 tube is higher than that of the C06M2 tube. The average nanohardness of irradiated tube samples saturated at 1.6-2.0 GPa hardening for both tubes between similar to 3.4 dpa and similar to 16 dpa. The hardening calculated based on transmission electron microscopy was found to be consistent with nanohardness measurements. (c) 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.