Title: The behaviour under irradiation of molybdenum matrix for inert matrix fuel containing americium oxide (CerMet concept)*
Citation: JOURNAL OF NUCLEAR MATERIALS vol. 465 p. 820-834
Publication Year: 2015
JRC N°: JRC92581
ISSN: 0022-3115
URI: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022311515301069
DOI: 10.1016/j.jnucmat.2015.07.021
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: Americium is a strong contributor to the long term radiotoxicity of high activity nuclear waste. Transmutation by irradiation in nuclear reactors or Accelerator Driven System (ADS, subcritical reactors dedicated to transmutation) of long-lived nuclides like 241Am is therefore an option for the reduction of radiotoxicity of waste packages to be stored in a repository. In order to safely burn americium in a fast reactor or ADS, it must be incorporated in a matrix that could be metallic (CerMet target) or ceramic (CerCer target). One of the most promising matrix to incorporate Am is molybdenum. In order to address the issues (swelling, stability under irradiation, gas retention and release) of using Mo as matrix to transmute Am, two irradiation experiments have been conducted recently at the High Flux Reactor (HFR) in Petten (The Netherland) namely HELIOS and BODEX. The BODEX experiment is a separate effect test, where the molybdenum behaviour is studied without the presence of fission products using 10B to “produce” helium, the HELIOS experiment included a more representative fuel target with the presence of Am and fission product. This paper covers the results of Post Irradiation Examination (PIE) of the two irradiation experiments mentioned above where molybdenum behaviour has been deeply investigated as possible matrix to transmute americium (CerMet fuel target). The behaviour of molybdenum looks satisfying at operating temperature but at high temperature (above 1000 °C) more investigation should be performed.
JRC Directorate:Energy, Transport and Climate

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