Fretting wear is a particular type of wear that is expected to occur in fuel assemblies of pressurized water cooled nuclear reactors. Fretting damage of fuel rods may cause Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) operations problems and are very expensive to repair. As utilities and fuel vendors adopt higher utilization of uranium and improved thermal margins plants, burned fuel rods will be loaded at core the periphery as part of the margin mechanisms. Pressurized Water Reactors (PWRs) have experienced fuel rods fretting wear failures due to flow induced vibrations. This study describes basic results of theoretical analysis and describes experiments to predict thinning of the Zr cladding wall thickness performed.

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