Abstract: The ongoing decarbonization efforts in the United States require a combination of various energy technologies with a low carbon foot print, with nuclear energy playing a substantial role. A summary of recent progress in nuclear materials chemistry aimed towards the synthesis and improved performance of complex oxide materials for fusion and fission applications will be presented. Utilization of wet-chemical, innovative synthesis approaches in combination with a wide range of characterization tools, facilitate a better understanding of the structure-property relationships of advanced nuclear fuel and its waste forms and enable aiming for increased safety and efficiency of the nuclear energy sector. Examples for the innovative synthesis of fusion breeder blanket materials by an internal sol-gel synthesis approach will be presented. For the safe disposal of nuclear waste key parameters, such as corrosion resistance and response to self-irradiation are assessed by a variety of experimental procedures complemented by modeling approaches. Our newly started research on advanced fuels is aiming towards fundamental insights into the generation and transport phenomena at grain boundaries. Ongoing efforts at UCI are supported by the recently established cluster of nuclear chemistry laboratories in combination with UCI’s own nuclear research reactor and characterization facilities, which will be introduced.
Tuesday, October 11, 2022 - 3:30pm