Accurately predicting fission gas releases (FGR) from high burn-up fuels during off-normal conditions, such as a loss-of-coolant accident (LOCA), is an important, major challenge. A significant step forward would be to identify and assess the basic mechanisms causing this FGR. A helpful way of better understanding these basic mechanisms is to separate these effects and to perform irradiations on materials simulating the nuclear fuel. Mesoporous or dense CeO2 and UO2 samples (with thin film geometry) were selected for these studies as materials representative of irradiated fuels. A basic mechanism to obtain a better understanding of FGR is described and a new methodology using thin film samples is developed to test the validity of this mechanism.