Centre of excellence for nuclear materials



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LECI hot laboratory


Located at CEA Saclay, the LECI, which is part of the Nuclear Materials Department (DMN), is a hot laboratory specializing in the characterization of irradiated materials for the nuclear industry. Belonging to the Section of Irradiated Materials Studies (SEMI), the LECI is a key facility for research programs in metallurgy, mechanics, and physico-chemistry of irradiated materials (metals, alloys, and composites). Research efforts include determining materials behavior in storage conditions and predicting the in-service lifetime of reactor materials through the development of models.


The LECI facility consists of 3 lines of shielded cells (K, I, and M) dedicated to sampling, specimen preparation, conditioning, experimental tests, material characterization and examination, and waste management.


  • K Line: irradiated fuels and materials examination and storage, conditioning, and sampling.
  • I Line: radiography, electron microscopy, non-destructive tests, welding, sample preparation, specimen potting and polishing, H2 content measurement and sample machining.
  • M Line: dimensional measurements, mechanical tests (tensile, toughness, impact, creep, relaxation, and pressure tests), Raman spectroscopy, IASCC, EPMA.

LECI facility at CEA Saclay


LECI M shielded cells line

Axial creep and relaxation tests  (LECI M20 cell)

Fracture surface of an ODS steel (SEM image)


#113 - Last update : 02/07 2014

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