Thermally induced radial cracking in fuel element pellets

Y. Sumi*, L. M. Keer, S. Nemat-Nasser

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


An investigation is made of the fracture properties of cylindrical nuclear fuel pellets. Using concepts from linear elastic fracture analysis and considering the stability of patterns of interacting cracks, the propagation of radial surface cracks into a cylindrical fuel column under the influence of thermal loading is studied. It is found that irrespective of the number of symmetrically placed cracks, only two cracks on opposite sides will tend to propagate until they coalesce. The nature of the crack growth until failure deduced from concepts of stability is discussed in detail. Numerical results using data for a typical advanced core fuel rod with mixed-carbide [UC + PuC] fuel, are given.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)147-159
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Nuclear Materials
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Jan 1981
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • General Materials Science
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering


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