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The NFIR-1programme was designed to investigate factors likely to affect the fission gas release behaviour of fuel rods operating under normal commercial conditions.
The factors which were investigated were:
the effect of fuel/rod design parameters, e.g., wet versus dry route pellet manufacture, fuel-clad gap size and rod pressurization,
the effect of power history i.e., IN/OUT fuel management strategy,
the effect of burn-up extension.
This was accomplished by an extensive PIE campain on 6 fuel rods irradiated to 40-64 MWd/kg under different prescribed conditions in the BR3 PWR . The examination involved non destructive mensuration and destructive examination using optical, SEM, TEM and EPMA techniques. The dataset is unique in demonstrating the effect of these variables on fuel performance.
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Keywords: clad creepdown, fission gas release, fission product distribution, pressurized water reactor.