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Conversion from Radiographic Film to Photo-Stimulable Phosphor Plates for Neutron Computed Radiography of Irradiated Nuclear Fuel

This paper summarizes efforts to characterize and qualify a computed radiography (CR) system for neutron radiography of irradiated nuclear fuel at Idaho National Laboratory (INL). INL has multiple programs that are actively developing, testing, and evaluating new nuclear fuels including advanced commercial nuclear fuels, accident tolerant fuels, reduced-enrichment research reactor fuels, transmutation fuels, and advanced reactor fuels. The Neutron Radiography reactor (NRAD) sits beneath a shielded hot cell facility where neutron radiography and other evaluation techniques are performed on these highly radioactive objects. Irradiated fuel experiments are subjected to a number of sequential post-irradiation examination (PIE) techniques that provide insight into the overall behavior and performance of the fuel. One of the first and most important of these exams is neutron radiography. Features of interest that can be evaluated through neutron radiography include irradiation-induced swelling, fission-product and fuel-constituent redistribution, plate deformations, and fuel fracturing. Results from neutron radiography are often the driver for the rest of the PIE program.

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