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Since 1996, this project has been focused on the local assessment of mechanical properties of non-irradiated and irradiated fuels with micro-acoustic and micro-indentation methods. In 1999, a study by acoustic microscopy concerning the influence of volume fraction porosity (in the range 1 to 7 %) on the elastic properties of non-irradiated fuel has been performed. Other measurements on non-stochiometric samples containing Erbium and Cerium, and on irradiated pellets have proved all the potentiality of the micro-acoustic approach. This paper deals first with a resume of the micro-acoustic activities and with the improvement of the experimental ultrasonic device recently introduced in a hot cell of the Institute for Transuranium Elements of Karlsruhe in order to get more local characterization and/or to operate on tiny samples. Secondly, measurements on very porous samples, including simulated fuels and irradiated UO(2) pellets, are presented and discussed.

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Authors: LAUX D, Universit? Montpellier, LAIN, Montpellier (FR);DESPAUX G, Universit? Montpellier, LAIN, Montpellier (FR);BARON D, EDF/DER, Division Recherches et D?veloppement, Moret, Loing (FR);SPINO J, ITU, Institute of Transuranium Elements, Karlsruhe (DE)
Bibliographic Reference: An oral report given at: The 7th International Conference on CANDU Fuel. Held in: Kingston, Ontario (CA), 23-27 September 2001
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