Energetics and kinetics unveiled on helium cluster growth in tungsten

JL Wang and LL Niu and XL Shu and Y Zhang, NUCLEAR FUSION, 55, 092003 (2015).

DOI: 10.1088/0029-5515/55/9/092003

The energetics and kinetics regarding helium (He) cluster growth in bcc tungsten (W) are unveiled using combined techniques of molecular statics and molecular dynamics. The principal mechanisms accounting for the decrease of system potential energy are identified to be trap mutation, < 100 > -> 1/2 < 111 > cluster transformation, loop punching, coalescence between 1/211-1 and 1/21-1-1 loops, and loop capturing. The kinetic barriers associated with these key atomistic events are estimated. This work provides new insights into the complex yet intriguing atomistic evolution sequence of the He cluster and interstitial loop in W-based nuclear fusion materials under irradiation.

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