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Critical components of the Advanced Neutron Source (ANS) reactor, to be built at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), will be fabricated from 6061-T651 aluminum alloy. This alloy has been selected for its favorable neutronic, thermal, and mechanical properties. The effect of irradiation on the tensile properties and fracture toughness has been studied to allow the lifetime of these components to be estimated. Irradiations were carried out in the High Flux Isotope Reactor at ORNL at a temperature of approximately 95°C to a fluence of approximately 1026 m-2 (thermal). Testing was conducted from room temperature to 150°C. The yield and ultimate tensile strengths were increased by irradiation, and the total elongation decreased, but the fracture toughness at 26 and 95°C was not degraded by irradiation, and decreased only slightly at 150°C.
aluminum, 6061-T651, irradiation effects, fracture toughness, yield strength, ductility, mechanical properties
Development Staff Member, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN