A series of out-reactor vibration and endurance tests have been carried out in support of design changes for nuclear fuel used in a 30 MWt research reactor. Vibration frequencies and amplitudes were measured in and out of flow, and the effect of proposed design changes on vibration levels was determined. Component wear was measured following endurance tests, and the fretting-wear performance was predicted for extended periods of time in operation. Based on the calculated maximum wear depth versus time, external wear of bundle wear pads due to flow-induced vibration is not expected to affect the function of the fuel-bundle endplates and spacers. Various aspects of this work are generally applicable to similar tests of power-reactor and other research-reactor fuel.

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