2018 | AFC ACCOMPLISHMENTS 102 Irradiation testing of fuel is highly recognized as an essential aspect of nuclear fuel research and development.The traditional approach for fuel testing typically involves full-scale integral irradiation campaigns that can require extensive use of funding and resources.While this approach is necessary for more mature concepts, early stage testing of novel fuel concepts may prove beneficial by highlighting poor or unexpected irradiation behavior before it reaches the stage of full-scale testing.The Miniature Fuel (MiniFuel) concept was designed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) to address this need by providing a resource for screening, benchmark testing, and separate effects screening of fuels by irradiating small fuel geometries in the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR).The approach uses small samples and a unique irradiation vehicle to accumulate burnup under highly controlled conditions.This greatly reduces cost while increasing control of numerous variables that cannot be easily accessed using conventional integral irradiation testing. Project Description: The MiniFuel concept uses a state- of-art design to irradiate very small fuel materials, with volumes on the order of a few cubic millimeters; currently planned geometries range from 3mm diameter disks to as small as 0.425mm diameter microspheres. This approach enables screening Development of Characterization Methods for Post-irradiation Examination of MiniFuel Geometries Principal Investigator: Alicia M. Raftery Collaborators: Robert N. Morris, Kurt R. Smith, Grant W. Helmreich, Christian M. Petrie, Kurt A.Terrani, Andrew T. Nelson Figure 1. Cutting fixture shown loaded with a MiniFuel test sub-capsule before cutting (left) and capped for transfer after cutting (right).