The reactor pressure vessels are the highest priority key components in nuclear power plants.
- changes in the reactor pressure vessel material fracture toughness resulting from the fast neutron irradiation are monitored with removal of the vessel material
- boat sampling is performed by electrical discharge machining (EDM)
- INETEC has developed and qualified the EDM cutting module attached to the LANCER
- EDM cutting module purpose is to cut the material from the reactor pressure vessel wall to obtain samples of the reactor pressure vessel material for further structural analysis
- the replication technique was developed to obtain precise determination of the weld geometry necessary for positioning of the cutting module prior to boat sampling and determination of divot depth left after boat sampling and grinding of sample sites
- the grinding module attached to the LANCER is developed for grinding sample spots to minimize stress concentration effects on sample spots, to eliminate surface irregularities resulting from EDM process and to eliminate recast layers on the surface of the EDM cut