INNUMAT – Innovative Structural Materials for Fission and Fusion
INNUMAT aims to develop innovative structural materials for nuclear applications and put them on track towards qualification for fission lead-cooled and molten salt fast reactors as well as fusion DEMO. For fission applications high entropy alloys (HEAs), a new class of materials with a vast development potential and very promising properties, as well as alumina forming austenitic (AFA) steels, already identified as prospective structural materials for Gen IV and Small Modular Reactors (SMR), are in the main focus.
Additionally, advanced material solutions for fission and fusion applications are considered as well, in particular weld overlay and coated 15-15Ti for lead-cooled fast reactors (LFR), among others MYRRHA and ALFRED, and coated Eurofer and advanced oxide dispersion strengthened (ODS) steel for fusion DEMO.
Some of these structural materials are of potential applicability also outside the nuclear field, e.g., HEAs and AFA steels in concentrated solar power (CSP) and coated steels in H2 confinement and CSP. The project is thus cross-cutting in nature because of the target applications, as well as because of the accelerated methodologies for materials discovery, screening and qualification that it pursues, applied at different technology readiness levels (TRLs).
To achieve the objectives and ambitions pursued by the different research tracks a work package structure was devised to cover the entire route generally required to develop new structural materials and to qualify them for a desired nuclear application, starting with a high-throughput development process, over to extensive characterization of the material behaviour under application relevant conditions, and through to fast qualification procedure considering nuclear codes and standards.
The advanced materials characterization and modelling play an important role in the evaluation of the mechanical behavior and thermal stability at high temperature of the new materials by combining experiments (conventional and advanced) and modelling activities. In this context, the Fraunhofer IZFP is involved in the materials characterization of new improved materials coated Eurofer and coated 15-15Ti for future fission and fusion reactors respectively. Advanced nondestructive ultrasonic and thermographic inspection methods will be applied to the coated materials Eurofer and 15-15Ti, for detection and characterization of high-temperature aging-related damage.
The INNUMAT consortium is highly interdisciplinary and complementary and gathers important European and some non-European institutions in the fields of nuclear energy. It consists in 36 participants from 10 European and 5 non-European countries.
This project has received funding from the European Union`s Horizon EURATOM 2021 NRT-01 nuclear research and training program under grant agreement No. 101061241.