Temperature-transient-to-burst tests were performed on irradiated Type 316 stainless steel cladding. Special attention was paid to control the atmosphere for specimen preparation and testing to avoid possible change in the chemical state of the fission products which remained inside the fueled specimens. Under the controlled atmosphere, the burst temperature of the irradiated fueled cladding was not degraded at lower stress level by the ‘fuel adjacency effect (FAE)’. The so-called fuel adjacency effect was suspected to be caused, at least in part, by an atmospheric effect during post-irradiation examination.
The transient burst temperatures of Type 316 stainless steels were fairly insensitive to the material conditions in a controlled testing environment, although the onset of swelling acted to decrease the failure temperature. Results were also presented for irradiated advanced austenitic stainless steel and ferritic/martensitic steel cladding.