This paper presents a microstructural study of a surveillance test specimen from the Loviisa-1 reactor in Finland, which is a Russian-type pressurized water reactor (VVER-440), after initial irradiation to a neutron fluence of 2.5 × 1019 n/cm2 (E > 1 MeV), post-irradiation annealing at 475 °C for 100 h and re-irradiation to three different fluences up to 2.7 × 1019 n/cm2. Atom probe tomography (APT) and positron annihilation spectroscopy (PAS) were used to characterize the test specimens. APT results showed the formation of Cu-rich solute clusters (SCs) during the initial irradiation and their subsequent coarsening during annealing. After re-irradiation, a small number of SCs formed once again. The hardening due to the SCs was estimated using the Russell-Brown model based on the APT results, and was in good agreement with the measured hardening after the initial irradiation and post-irradiation annealing. In contrast, during the first-step of re-irradiation, the estimated hardening due to the SCs was smaller than the measured hardening. This suggested that the hardening after re-irradiation was due to some microstructure other than the observed SCs. This difference was attributed to newly-formed matrix defects during re-irradiation, which was supported by the PAS results. However in subsequent steps of re-irradiation, the hardening was almost constant.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Nuclear and High Energy Physics
- Materials Science(all)
- Nuclear Energy and Engineering