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Nuclear materials

Nuclear energy production requires materials that are very resistant under demanding environment: temperature, pressure and irradiation field. These materials act as barriers and their structural properties are investigated with emphasis on mechanical performance, durability, plasticity and stability. The symposium J includes sessions dealing with materials ranging from structural components of fission thermal or fast reactors, fuel materials to waste forms. Production of these materials at the industrial level is discussed on the basis of economical and safety considerations. Macro – properties such as quality, thermodynamics thermophysical and mechanical as well as micro-structural analysis are studied from the atomic scale to the materials within a multi-scale approach.


The component materials for Gen II and III, as well as for Gen IV reactors are tested for their behaviour under irradiation with particles (neutrons, protons, deutons …) of high energy and large flux. These are structural materials such as alloys (steels) or composites (cercer, cermet …) or are the coolant e.g. liquid metals or molten salts. The session concerns the R&D for high temperature gas reactors and molten salt reactors.

The fuels consist of solids (or liquids) with their components (homogeneous/heterogeneous, matrices, fissiles, burnable poisons, fertiles and additives). These fuel materials (oxides, nitrides, carbides, silicides / solid, or fluoride, chloride / liquid  …) are presented in a comprehensive way with emphasis of their intrinsic properties (thermal conductivity, high melting points). The new accident tolerant fuels and the inert matrix fuels shall be discussed in specific sub sessions. This section also includes liquid fuels such as molten fluorides (thermal) or chlorides (fast) for the molten salt reactors. Other liquids may also be investigated if acceptable. Again key properties such as melting points, thermal capacity, … are discussed in this session.

The waste forms must finally be recognized for their stability, durability, low solubility or leachability over geological time scale. The research includes materials such as homogeneous amorphous (glass) crystalline (spent UO2 fuels) or heterogeneous (Synroc, spent MOX fuel).

In all cases irradiation with accelerator guide the investigators in choosing optimal components prior irradiation in reactor. The challenge this century will be to work with much reliable and robust materials that make their use safer in nuclear system. Specific attention shall be given on the cost in Energy (EJ) during their production and their performance in term of retention of contaminants. The symposium shall contribute in enhancing the safety of the nuclear systems.

Hot topics to be covered by the symposium:

  • Green uranium/thorium mining
  • Extraction U from seawater
  • Green fuel production (energy cheaper routes)
  • ‘Stronger’ structural materials
  • Liquid fuel reactor components
  • New nuclear industrial applications
  • More performing waste forms
  • Integrated Computational Materials Engineering
  • Education in Nuclear Materials

Tentative list of invited speakers:

  • Eva Uribe – Sandia National Laboratories, USA: the proliferation resistance of the Th fuel cycle
  • Lumin Wang – Nuclear Engineering at University of Michigan, USA: Status of Nuclear Energy in China
  • Mark Sarsfield - NNL, Penrith, UK: Americium in Mars mission
  • Elsa  Merle-Lucotte - INP, Genoble, France: Impact of molten salt reactor materials on its performance
  • David Leblanc - Terrestrial energy Toronto, Canada: SMR-MSR Small modular- Molten salt reactor

Tentative list of scientific committee members:

  • Christine Delafoy, Framatom, France
  • Peng Xu, Westinghouse, USA
  • Liu Tong, China General Nuclear, China
  • Lingfeng He, Idaho National Laboratory, USA
  • Daniel Shepherd, National Nuclear Laboratory, UK  
  • Michael Ojovan, IAEA, Vienna, Austria
  • Eric Simoni, Uni Orsay, France
  • Rory Kennedi, INL, USA
  • Christina Trautmann, GSF, Germany
  • Yongsun Yi, El Kahlifa Uni, Abu Dabi, UAE
  • Motoyasu Kinoshita, CRIEPI, Japan
  • Xu Hongjie, SINAP, CAS, Shanghai, China
  • Stephane Bourg, CEA Marcoule, France
  • Thierry Stora, ISOLDE, CERN, Switzerland
  • Rudi Konings, ITU JRC, EU 
  • Sergey Stefanovky, Frumkin Institute, Moscow, Russia
  • Eric Vance, ANSTO, Australia


The proceedings are foreseen to be published in Nucl. Instrum. Methods B (Elsevier).

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Symposium organizers
Chaitanyamoy GANGULYUniversity Gandhinagar

Department of Nuclear Science and Technology, Gujarat 382007, India

+91 8008222016
Claude DEGUELDRELancaster University

Engineering Department, Lancaster, UK

+ 44 1524 592716

Locked Bag 2001, Kirrawee DC, NSW 2232, Australia

+61 2 9717 3742
Rodney C. EWINGStanford University

Center for International Security and Cooperation:, University of Stanford, CA, USA

+1 650 725 8641