The QUENCH out-of-pile experiments are part of the Severe Fuel Damage (SFD) program at the Karlsruhe Research Center. They are to investigate the hydrogen source term that results from reflooding an uncovered core of a Light-Water Reactor (LWR) with emergency cooling water. In the QUENCH experimental program Zircaloy-4 was used as standard-type material for rod cladding and grid spacer. Up to the end of 2007, 12 QUENCH experiments have been performed with this type of cladding; two test bundles contained B4C and one AgInCd absorber. One experiment (QUENCH-12) was conducted with Zr1%Nb cladding (VVER-type). Due to the niobium-bearing cladding, the VVER-type test QUENCH-12 could be regarded as a precursor for the upcoming program “QUENCH-ACM” with advanced cladding materials, i.e. M5, Duplex, ZIRLO, to be tested under SFD or BDBA (beyond design basis accident) conditions. These materials were developed for longer operation times in nuclear power reactors and extended burnup. They are optimized regarding their corrosion behavior under operational conditions and were also tested for LOCA (loss of coolant accident) and RIA (reactivity-initiated accident) conditions by the manufacturers. However, there are only very limited data available on the behavior of the new alloys in the SFD/BDBA temperature range, i.e. above 1500 K. The QUENCH-ACM test series has been defined with three experiments, i.e. QUENCH-14 through QUENCH-16. As in the Zircaloy-4 experiments, fuel is represented by ZrO2 pellets. Also, the test section instrumentation will be as usual with thermocouples attached to the cladding, shroud, and cooling jacket at elevations between −50 mm and 1350 mm. The QUENCH-ACM test series is scheduled to be performed in the period of 2008–2010. Test matrix and test bundle arrangements are presented in this paper.

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