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Session Overview
7.08: Reactor Physics & Analysis-General & Fuels
Monday, 16/Mar/2020:
3:15pm - 5:00pm

Session Chair: Han Gyu Joo, Seoul National University, Korea, Republic of (South Korea)
Session Chair: Saeed A. Alameri, Khalifa University of Science and Technology, United Arab Emirates
Location: G-1011

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An Overview of the UK’s Nuclear Innovation Programme - Advanced Fuels - Reactor Physics Phase 2

Seddon Atkinson1, Bruno Merk1, Heather Beaumont3, Andrew Grief3, Peter Smith3, Ben Lindley3, Glyn Rossiter2, Peter Wort2

1The University of Liverpool; 2National Nuclear Laboratory; 3Wood Nuclear

Following the recommendations from the UK’s Nuclear Innovation and Research Board (NIRAB) and with support from the Nuclear Innovation and Research Office (NIRO) UK Government (the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS)) embarked on a Nuclear Innovation Programme (NIP) expecting to invest around £180m in nuclear innovation across the UK nuclear Industry.

As part of this programme were recommendations that “At the end of the programme the UK must have the tools and reactor physics codes required to address the future nuclear landscape within the UK…”.

A partnership between the National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL), Wood Nuclear, University of Liverpool, EDF, University of Manchester, Imperial College London and Cambridge University was set up to address this challenge. As part of the first phase of this work the following tasks were recommended to be addressed in phase 2 of the programme:

Task 1: Coupling Fuel Performance and Reactor Physics Codes

Task 2: Modelling Advanced Fuels and Making Best Use of Available Data to Improve Model Validation

Task 3: Modelling of Advanced Fuels Under Accident Conditions, Including Linking and Feedback from Fuel Performance, Whole Plant Performance and Multi-Physics Codes

Task 4: Higher Fidelity Neutronic Calculations, Including Improved Methods for Pin Power Calculation

Task 5: Augmenting Existing UK Codes to Model Accurately Heat Transfer in High Temperature Reactors

Task 6: Understanding the Work Required to Adapt the UK Code System for Fast Reactor Physics and Fuel Performance Analysis Relevant of Liquid Metal Fast Reactors.

The general approach for each task was to perform a boundary scanning requirement capture to identify international best practice and recognise current UK capability. From this the gaps in UK capability can be documented and addressed. This paper presents the outcome of the requirement capture and identifies the plan for development of tools and capabilities within the UK.

Performance Indices Optimization of Long-Lived Fission Products Transmutation in Fast Reactors

Peng Hong Liem1,2, Yoshihisa Tahara1, Naoyuki Takaki1, Donny Hartanto3

1Tokyo City University; 2Nippon Advanced Information Service; 3University of Sharjah

An investigation on the nuclear transmutations of elemental long-lived fission products (LLFP) in a fast reactor is being conducted in Japan focusing on the Se-79, Zr-93, Tc-99, Pd-107, I-129, and Cs-135, to reduce the environmental burden. With their high neutron flux and adequate excessive neutrons, fast reactors are considered as one strong candidate for transmuting those LLFPs into stable isotopes under the Partition and Transmutation (P/T) strategy. In our investigation, the LLFP assembly is assumed to be loaded into the radial blanket region of a Japanese MONJU class sodium-cooled fast reactor (710 MWth). In this work, we focus on two LLFPs namely Tc-99 and I-129. The LLFPs are mixed with YD2 or YH2 moderator material to enhance the LLFP transmutation rate. We study the optimal position of the LLFP assembly in the radial blanket and the optimal moderator volume fraction, to optimize the transmutation performance indices, i.e. the transmutation rate (TR, %/year), the support factor (SF is defined as the ratio of transmuted to produced LLFP) and the effective half-life of the LLFPs. The effect of loading LLFP assemblies on the fast reactor core characteristics, such as the core reactivity and breeding ratio, is also conducted. A counter-measure is also devised to resolve the expected higher power peak that appeared at the fuel assembly adjacent to the LLFP assembly.

Neutronic Analysis of IFBA-Coated TRISO Fuel Particles in High Temperature Reactors

Mohammad Alrwashdeh, Saeed A. Alameri

Khalifa University of Science and Technology

The fuel concept of Prismatic Advanced High Temperature Reactor (PAHTR) utilizing TRi-structural ISOtropic (TRISO) fuel particles embedded in an impervious silicon carbide matrix is widely used in High Temperature Reactor (HTR) fuel designs. The TRISO fuel consists of a fuel kernel and buffer layer, inner pyrolytic carbon (IPyC) layer, silicon carbide (SiC) layer, and outer pyrolytic carbon (OPyC) layer. These layers offer the advantage of proliferation resistance, enhanced thermal conductivity, radiation damage resistance, and the most important is environmental stability. In this paper, a neutronics study has been performed for PAHTR fuel particle unit cell by applying an innovative idea of adding Integral Fuel Burnable Absorber (IFBA) as an additional coating layer with different thicknesses. This coating layer is placed between the fuel kernel and the buffer layer in the fuel particle. In this paper, fuel enrichment is set as 19.75 w/o, and the TRISO particles were modeled in a hexagonal matrix, with a packing factor of 35 %, which leads to an increased cycle length of the modeled fuel concept.

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