Structural Materials Division
We investigate the behavior of materials exposed to energetic particle irradiation. The work contributes to the program NUSAFE (Nuclear Waste Management, Safety and Radiation Research) of the Helmholtz Association, it is tightly integrated in international collaboration.
Neutron irradiation provokes the formation and long-term evolution of nm-scale defects such as dislocation loops and solute atom clusters. These defects give rise to hardening accompanied by a reduced fracture resistance of reactor pressure vessel steels of running nuclear power plants. Materials for advanced reactor concepts will be exposed to higher operation temperatures and higher doses of neutron irradiation.
The overall objectives of our research are to elucidate the mechanisms of irradiation-induced damage in Fe-based structural materials and to assess the resulting changes of the mechanical properties.
We work on two main directions:
The new insight substantially contributes to the scientific background for the safety assessment of nuclear reactors. The work is embedded in the Euratom projects SOTERIA, MATISSE and M4F.
A close cooperation with the Fundamentals and Simulation Group provides additional insight to the processes at the nm scale via atomistic simulation.