In the race for a carbon-free future, the nuclear industry is sparing no safeguard in its advanced reactor designs. In the aftermath of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident, research has ramped up for developing accident tolerant fuels.
Accident tolerant fuels reduce the chance of releasing fission products at high temperatures, and one potential breakthrough in optimizing accident tolerance and performance is through the use of 3D fabrication. Some advanced fuels might theoretically enable nuclear reactors to run at higher power levels.
“The group’s research definitely advances the search for accident-tolerant fuel, by adding an additional barrier to fission products while also maintaining high fuel density,” he said. “Their core innovation is coming up with a manufacturable fuel concept that adds a layer of defense against the release of radioactive fission products in an accident.”