Mixed Oxide Fuel Fabrication Research and Development
J. Teague, A. Neuman
Mixed Oxide (MOX) fuel was prepared and analyzed by the Los Alamos National Laboratory Fuels Technology team. The objective of this project was to resolve technical issues associated with applying the large experience base of making MOX with reactor grade plutonium to the fabrication of MOX using surplus weapons-grade plutonium. MOX feed material blended at a ratio of 95 wt% Pu oxide and then pressed at a range of pressures was analyzed to determine the process parameters required to meet programmatic specifications. Green and sintered densities were compared to determine the range of pressures necessary to yield the final sintered density requirements. In addition, sintered density was compared with diametrical shrinkage to establish a baseline range of pressures and sintering conditions. Experiments have shown that the feed material can be pressed at a range of pressures resulting in only small changes in sintered density.
This abstract was presented at the 32nd Annual Midyear Meeting, "Creation and Future Legacy of Stockpile Stewardship Isotope Production, Applications, and Consumption", Sealed Sources, Recycling, and Transmutation Session, 1/24/1999 - 1/27/1999, held in Albuquerque, NM.