Abstract Time-dependent strain accumulation in Zircaloy-4 was evaluated at 294 K, i.e., homologous temperature (T/Tm, where Tm is the melting temperature) of 0.14, to ascertain the mechanical response in fuel cladding material, even at the time of storage. Although diffusion processes are suppressed, considerable strain accumulation was observed at less than 0.2% offset stress. Transmission electron microscopy and electron backscattered diffraction analyses were used to investigate the dominant microstructural mechanism. Results showed that the heterogeneous dislocation structure generated strain accumulation, where straightly aligned dislocation arrays on the prismatic plane move freely and few deformation twins were formed in the grain interior. Furthermore, few dislocation tangles were observed because the slip systems were limited to one. Therefore, Zircaloy-4 shows weak work-hardening at the low homologous temperature because of the fewer interactions among dislocations, leading to unexpected strain accumulation under constant load conditions.
- Nuclear power generation
- Room temperature
- Strain accumulation
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Nuclear and High Energy Physics
- Materials Science(all)
- Nuclear Energy and Engineering