Phase field simulation of grain growth in porous uranium dioxide Academic Article uri icon


  • A novel phase field model has been developed to investigate grain growth in porous polycrystalline UO2. Based on a system of Cahn-Hilliard and Allen-Cahn equations, the model takes into consideration both the curvature driven grain boundary motion and pore migration by surface diffusion. As such, the model accounts for the interaction between pore and grain boundary kinetics, which tends to retard the growth process. The phase field model parameters are found in terms of measurable material properties. Hence, quantitative results that can be compared with experiments were obtained. The model has been used to investigate the effect of porosity on the kinetics of grain growth in UO 2. It is found that, as the amount of porosity increases, grain growth in UO2 gradually changes from boundary controlled growth to pore controlled growth. For high porosity levels, the grain growth completely stops after a short evolution time. It is also found that the inhomogeneous distribution of pores leads to abnormal grain growth even without taking into account the anisotropy in grain boundary energy and mobility. The effects of porosity, temperature and initial microstructure on grain growth were thoroughly investigated. The model predictions are in good agreement with published experimental results of grain growth in UO2. 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

published proceedings

  • Journal of Nuclear Materials

author list (cited authors)

  • Ahmed, K., Pakarinen, J., Allen, T., & El-Azab, A.

complete list of authors

  • Ahmed, Karim||Pakarinen, Janne||Allen, Todd||El-Azab, Anter

publication date

  • January 1, 2014 11:11 AM