Navigation Links
Clemson researcher studies carbon fibers for nuclear reactor safety

CLEMSON, S.C. Carbon fibers that are only one-tenth the size of a human hair, but three times stronger than steel, may hold up to the intense heat and radiation of next generation nuclear power generators, providing a safety mechanism. The Gen IV power-generating reactors are being designed to provide low-cost electricity, but with a built-in safety mechanism current reactors do not have.

The Department of Energy (DoE) has awarded chemical engineering professor Amod Ogale, deputy director of the Center for Advanced Engineering Fibers and Films (CAEFF), a $450,000 grant to research carbon fibers embedded into a carbon matrix that do not melt in extreme temperatures for potential use in Gen IV power generators. Presently, about 20 percent of electricity produced in the United States is from nuclear sources.

One proposed design of the next generation of nuclear plants will consist of a helium-cooled generator that will operate in the range of 1,200 to 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit, says Ogale. A critical safety requirement for this reactor is that it can shut down safely in the event of a malfunction where coolant flow is interrupted. Steel alloys currently used internally in reactors melt at the peak temperature of 2500 degrees Fahrenheit, where carbon fiber composites do not.

Carbon fiber composites are already used successfully in jetliner brake systems because of their ability to withstand high temperatures without melting. However, their performance in a nuclear environment is not adequately understood.

Ogale and his team will study the neutron-radiation damage effects on carbon fibers.

His prior research has shown that including carbon nanotubes (large molecules of carbon that are tube-shaped and 30 nanometers in size) in carbon fibers leads to the development of a more uniform texture that improves the properties of the ultra-thin carbon fibers.

In his research, Ogale expects to generate high graphitic crystallinity, a solid ordered pattern which is evenly distributed so that any changes in fiber properties due to radiation can be minimized.

Irradiation experiments will be conducted in collaboration with researchers at Oak Ridge National Labs. South Carolina State University researchers also will participate in the study.

This research will lead to a fundamental understanding of how the nanotubes set themselves up to provide radiation-damage tolerance to carbon fibers, said Ogale.


Contact: Amod Ogale
Clemson University

Related biology technology :

1. Richard Schulz Receives the Coveted GCPj Award for Best Clinical Researcher of the Year
2. Researchers improve ability to write and store information on electronic devices
3. Long-awaited international ethical guidelines for biobank researchers
4. Argonne researcher studies what makes quantum dots blink
5. CU researchers shed light on light-emitting nanodevice
6. Stevens researchers provide new information about mass spectrometry
7. Researchers measure carbon nanotube interaction
8. Researchers underscore limitations of genetic ancestry tests
9. ASU researchers improve memory devices using nanotech
10. UD researchers race ahead with latest spintronics achievement
11. Researchers outline structure of largest nonvirus particle ever crystallized
Post Your Comments:
(Date:12/1/2015)... SAN DIEGO , Dec. 1, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... that uses allogeneic stem cells for cardiovascular indications, ... clinical trial protocol based on recommendations from a ... leaders and its Scientific Advisory Board members ... boards analyzed preliminary Phase IIa safety and efficacy ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... Cepheid (Nasdaq: CPHD ) today announced ... Jaffray Healthcare Conference in New York City ... its outlook for the fourth quarter of 2015 and ... longer term business model expectations. John Bishop ... to be the fastest growing company of the major ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... 30, 2015 , ... Global Stem Cells Group ... from Central America and abroad for the first Iberoamerican Convention on Aesthetic Medicine, ... 2016. Testart will present and discuss new trends in anti-aging stem cell treatments, ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... MONTREAL , Dec. 1, 2015 /PRNewswire/ - BioAmber Inc. (NYSE: ... that it has joined the American Business Act on Climate ... economy that are standing with the Obama Administration to demonstrate ... for a strong outcome to the COP21 Paris ... . --> Sarnia, Canada . ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:10/29/2015)... Calif. , Oct. 29, 2015  The J. ... new report titled, "DNA Synthesis and Biosecurity: Lessons Learned ... the Department of Health and Human Services guidance for ... in 2010. --> ... it also has the potential to pose unique biosecurity ...
(Date:10/29/2015)... , Oct. 29, 2015  Connected health pioneer, ... driving the explosion of technology-enabled health and wellness, and ... new book, The Internet of Healthy Things ... sensors or smartphones even existed, Dr. Kvedar, vice president, ... of health care delivery, moving care from the hospital ...
(Date:10/27/2015)... , Oct. 27, 2015 In the present ... of concern for various industry verticals such as banking, ... to the growing demand for secure & simplified access ... ,sectors, such as hacking of bank accounts, misuse of ... equipment such as PC,s, laptops, and smartphones are expected ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):