Standard Guide for Use of Melt Wire Temperature Monitors for Reactor Vessel Surveillance, E 706 (IIIE)
Temperature monitors are used in surveillance capsules in accordance with Practice E 2215 to verify the estimated value of the surveillance specimen irradiation temperature. Temperature monitors are needed to give evidence of overheating of surveillance specimens beyond the expected temperature. Because overheating causes a reduction in the amount of neutron radiation damage to the surveillance specimens, this overheating could result in a change in the measured properties of the surveillance specimens that would lead to an unconservative prediction of damage to the reactor vessel material.
The magnitude of the reduction of radiation damage with overheating depends on the composition of the material and time at temperature. Guide E 900 provides an accepted method for quantifying the temperature effect. Because the evidence from melt wire monitors gives no indication of the duration of overheating above the expected temperature as indicated by melting of the monitor, the significance of overheating events cannot be quantified on the basis of thermal monitors alone. Indication of overheating does serve to alert the user of the data to further evaluate the irradiation temperature exposure history of the surveillance capsule.
This guide is IIIE of Master Matrix E 706 that relates several standards used for irradiation surveillance of light water reactor vessel materials. It is intended primarily to amplify the requirements of Practice E 185 in the design of temperature monitors for the surveillance program. It may also be used in conjunction with Practice E 2215 to evaluate the post-irradiation test measurements..
1.1 This guide describes the application of melt wire temperature monitors and their use for reactor vessel surveillance of light-water power reactors as called for in Practice E 185.
1.2 The purpose of this guide is to recommend the selection and use of the common melt wire technique where the correspondence between melting temperature and composition of different alloys is used as a passive temperature monitor. Guidelines are provided for the selection and calibration of monitor materials; design, fabrication, and assembly of monitor and container; post-irradiation examinations; interpretation of the results; and estimation of uncertainties.
1.3 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use. (See Note 1.)
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