ADVISE & NOMAD: Two Projects, One Goal
ADVISE and NOMAD are two projects funded under the same H2020 Euratom call NFRP-2016-2017-1 “Continually improving safety and reliability of Generation II and III reactors” and both have received the NUGENIA label from the Nuclear Generation II & III Association. Both projects aim to fulfil nuclear safety requirements for the assessment of long-term operation, and they will both use ultrasonic-based methods for characterising different kinds of materials, components and degradation phenomena at microstructural and macrostructural level.
The ADVISE project aims to enhance the ultrasonic inspection of complex structured materials, for which conventional ultrasonic techniques suffer from severe performance limitations due to the micro and/or macro-structure. It aspires to increase the comprehension and modelling of complex structures for accurate prediction, to develop new tools for material characterisation and to provide advanced inspection and defect evaluation methods as well as assisted diagnostics. The main output of the project is thus a step change improvement in performance in terms of inspectable depth, defect detection and characterisation accuracy. For austeno-ferritic cast components, an increase of the inspectable depth of 70 to 85 mm is aimed for.
The NOMAD project aims to assess in-situ the material degradation induced by neutron irradiation in RPV steels using a multi-parameter nondestructive tool. This tool is planned to, complement the destructive methods applied by the surveillance programmes. In order to reach these goals, multiple non-destructive evaluation (NDE) methods will be applied to different scales of samples in neutron-irradiated condition. The results will be compared and combined across methods, samples and degradation parameters in order to define a hybrid approach and finally demonstrate it in a modular way. The primary goals of NOMAD are: The development and calibration of an NDE tool for the in-situ inspection of cladded RPV material, which can have microstructure heterogeneities and the validation of the surveillance programmes with respect to the actual vessel under LTO conditions (equivalence of radiation damage accumulation). There are a number of possible technical synergies:
- Both ADVISE and NOMAD will use ultrasonic-based methods for characterising different kinds of materials, components and degradation phenomena at microstructural and macrostructural level.
- NOMAD will measure alterations of the wave velocity due to irradiation induced embrittlement. In this way, NOMAD could deliver findings regarding differences in the scattering behaviour of ultrasound and instruct an appropriate course of action depending on these findings.
- Since ultrasonic measurements within NOMAD must be done through the cladding layer, irregularities within the cladding – in particular for older, manually produced, claddings - may also induce modifications of the flight time of ultrasound waves. It may thus be interesting to verify whether the material characterisation methods developed in ADVISE can be used to determine the characteristics of the cladding layer. This could increase accuracy by distinguishing the wave velocity modifications due to cladding and embrittlement.
As they are obvious common grounds, potential synergies can be created between the projects, in particular for the dissemination and training activities. Since NOMAD started three months earlier, a final workshop would need some careful scheduling to allow both projects to accommodate for the different end of project dates. In this context, commonly organised mid-term and final project workshops in terms of joint scientific sessions might be pertinent cluster activities for 2019 and 2021.