Damage mechanisms in SiC/SiC composite tubes : three-dimensional analysis coupling tomography imaging and numerical simulation

Abstract : Because of their outstanding physical and chemical properties at high temperature, in comparison with metals, silicon carbide (SiC) composite materials are studied as possible nuclear fuel cladding materials either for future advanced fission/fusion reactors, or more recently, for the currently existing light water reactors. 2D-braided SiC/SiC composite tubes, manufactured by chemical vapor infiltration (CVI), exhibit an anisotropic, hardly deformable (~1%) mechanical behavior. Understanding the relations between the microstructure, the damage mechanisms and the macroscopic behavior is essential to optimize the structural design of this material for the considered applications. One important manufacturing parameter is the braiding angle, i.e. the angle between the fiber tows and the tube axis. The objective of this work is to provide a comprehensive understanding of the damage-microstructure relations, in particular of the effects of the braiding angle on the damage mechanisms. For this purpose, an investigation combining experimental observations at macro and micro-scale and numerical simulations is developed. The composite tubes are first studied through in situ tensile testing under X-ray computed tomography. Experiments were carried out on the PSICHE beamline at synchrotron SOLEIL using a pink polychromatic beam. The recorded 3D images are processed using the digital volume correlation (DVC) technique, extended by a series of advanced image processing algorithms specifically developed in order to analyze the 3D microstructures, to measure the deformations through the tube thickness, and to detect and quantitatively characterize the network of micro-cracks created by the mechanical loading. In addition, numerical simulations are performed on the real microstructures as observed in the high-resolution images recorded during the in situ tests. Stress fields are calculated at the microstructural scale in the elastic regime using a numerical tool based on the Fast Fourier Transform (FFT). They help to better understand crack initiation and interpret the experimental observations within one-to-one comparisons. Both the experimental and numerical approaches are applied to three tubes with different braiding angles (30°, 45° and 60°). The effect of the braiding angle on the initiation and evolution of damage in the bulk of the composite materials can thus be highlighted
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Submitted on : Tuesday, March 13, 2018 - 2:06:12 PM
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  • HAL Id : tel-01730585, version 1



Yang Chen. Damage mechanisms in SiC/SiC composite tubes : three-dimensional analysis coupling tomography imaging and numerical simulation. Civil Engineering. Université Paris-Est, 2017. English. ⟨NNT : 2017PESC1056⟩. ⟨tel-01730585⟩



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