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Influence of Gamma Irradiation on Electric Cables Models: Study of Additive Effects by Mid-Infrared Spectroscopy

Abstract : Cables, especially their insulation and jacket materials made of polymers, are vulnerable to ageing degradation during normal operation. However, they must remain functional for the entire life of a nuclear power plant, or even in the event of an accident for cables with a safety requirement. This study focuses on models of crosslinked polyethylene (XLPE)-based insulation of cables and deals with the structure modification and the behavior of XLPE for nuclear applications due to the effect of additives. Various additives are added to the polymer formulation to evaluate their impact on ageing. The samples are irradiated at room temperature by several gamma doses, up to 374 kGy, with two dose rates (40 Gy/h and 300 Gy/h) and compared with a non-irradiated sample used as reference. To understand the impact of gamma irradiation on the materials, the principal component analysis (PCA) method is applied on spectra recorded through attenuated total reflectance–Fourier transform infrared (ATR-FTIR) spectroscopy. The results highlight the effects of ageing depending on the dose rate and on the formulation of the materials, with the identification of different degradation products. A curve resolution study compares the effects of different additives on polymer oxidation and shows that the low dose rate leads to a higher degradation than the high dose rate.
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https://hal-amu.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-03227159
Contributor : Nathalie Dupuy <>
Submitted on : Monday, May 17, 2021 - 9:07:20 AM
Last modification on : Thursday, May 27, 2021 - 3:03:35 AM

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Astrid Maléchaux, Juliette Colombani, Sandrine Amat, Sylvain Marque, Nathalie Dupuy. Influence of Gamma Irradiation on Electric Cables Models: Study of Additive Effects by Mid-Infrared Spectroscopy. Polymers, MDPI, 2021, 13, ⟨10.3390/polym13091451⟩. ⟨hal-03227159⟩

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