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Aug 29, The High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR) at the Oak Ridge National results from ongoing studies which have revisited system thermal-hydraulic.
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The models so produced can be better than the original one-dimensional ones, but do not represent complex flows well. The most capable tool available to us for modelling these multi-dimensional effects is computational fluid dynamics CFD. Modern CFD is able to produce high-quality predictions flows in complex geometries, but only with the use of large computing resources.

However, much of the primary circuit may be able to be modelled with adequate fidelity using a cheap one-dimensional systems code, and it may only be in a limited part of the circuit that full 3-dimensional effects are important. The natural response to this is to develop methods where simple one-dimensional models are replied where they are appropriate, but where these are then coupled to full 3-dimensional treatments of those parts of the system which require it.

David Harland. The core aim of this project is to help towards understanding heat transfer in non-circular channels of high aspect ratio, with partial blockages perturbing flow. Towards this end, secondary flows must be taken into account in the modelling process. The first stage of this project is to calculate the flow field in channels of appropriate rectangular geometry using a variety of computational tools. One interesting feature of this approach is a comparison of the various models and an establishment of the level of complexity required to obtain a valuable solution to the problem.

Secondly, it is necessary to carry out very detailed measurements of the flow fields in rectangular channels of appropriate size using an appropriate laser-based technique such as PIV. A detailed comparison of CFD simulations with experimental results will allow validation of the choice of turbulence model.


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Additionally, simulations and measurements will be carried out in channels after having introduced small blockages, such as gas bubbles. The previously validated models will again be compared with experimental results to gain further insight. A possible extension to the project would be gaining an understanding of the mechanisms involved in bubble detachment and their removal by advection. In addition to this, the formulation is itself unrepresentative of the many interacting heat transfer mechanisms at work during the boiling process.

These factors impose an upper bound on the predictive capability and range of application of the CFD code, which limits its usefulness as an engineering tool. Giovanni Giustini. Frederic Sebilleau.

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Morgan Cowper. The results of these initial computations have been alarming. The use of UMo dispersion LEU fuel results in a harder neutron spectrum compared to HEU fuel, which could create problems for silicon doping applications as well as for the production of radiopharmaceuticals. TPU purchases its own fuel, so a significant increase in fuel costs could negatively impact revenues.

The IRT facility was designed primarily as a student training facility. For example, MEPhI performs scientific experiments for producing short-lived isotopes, tests sensors for power stations, and hosts medical physics research, particularly the development of equipment for neutron therapy. Because of the relatively low neutron flux densities described below , materials testing and industrial-scale isotope production are not performed at this facility. Beyond the training and research missions, MEPhI also hosts visits to the facility by members of the public. These visits are intended to improve public relations and demonstrate the safety and reliability of the reactor.

The reactor has a maximum fast neutron flux in the core of 4. The reactor uses a beryllium reflector. IRT also has 10 horizontal experimental channels, allowing for a range of training and scientific work to be conducted see Figure Two horizontal experimental channels are currently being used for neutron therapy. The first is used to irradiate animals, and the second is being reconfigured for human testing.

Relap5 model of the high flux isotope reactor with low enriched fuel thermal flux profiles

These channels require specific parameters that would not be changeable if the reactor were to be converted to LEU fuel. The radiation safety parameters for IRT are set to be stricter than for many other research reactors because of the public tours. This will continue to be true after conversion. Although IRT is not used to produce isotopes—meaning that the neutron flux in the vertical channels is not the key parameter—it is important to maintain the capabilities required for neutron capture therapy and to enable research by maintaining current neutron flux densities in some locations.

Operating funds for the IRT reactor are limited, so economic parameters will be essential when considering conversion. The fuel assembly positions 1 are shown as yellow boxes; the fuel assemblies with channels for control rods 2 are shown as yellow boxes with gray circles 3 at the center, representing the control rods; the beryllium reflector positions 6 are shown as blue boxes; and the aluminum reflector positions 7 are shown as green boxes. The large green object on the left of each diagram is aluminum, and the aquamarine object to the left is graphite.

An initial neutronics analysis of the HEU core has been completed and further analysis on the neutronics and thermal-hydraulics of the core is currently under way. For these two tasks, MEPhI has used an application developed within its institute and qualified by the Russian nuclear regulator.

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Using this application, the safety, experimental performance, and fuel assembly consumption parameters of an HEU core were determined for comparison with the proposed LEU core. The key parameter used for the analysis is the neutron flux density in two channels. However, staff. At this time, UMo dispersion LEU fuel has not yet been licensed in Russia, so there is no answer at this time as to what the allowed burnup will be. The IRT reactor has been in operation for 44 years and is in need of some refurbishment.

For example, the beryllium reflectors should be replaced and soon the control rods will also need to be replaced. Although the need for the reactor refurbishment is not directly connected with the conversion to LEU fuel, modifying the fuel enrichment without updating the reactor would be problematic; it would be best to combine these two tasks. Following the individual case study briefings some time was set aside for free discussion among the workshop participants.

Thermal-hydraulic analysis of the HFIR (High Flux Isotope Reactor) - Digital Library

The major points made by individuals sometimes multiple individuals over the course of this discussion are summarized in the paragraphs below. The feasibility of converting from HEU fuel to LEU fuel has been studied for a number of Russian reactors, but some participants noted that a significant amount of work still remains to be done to successfully convert them. On the other hand, it was also noted that although the United States has successfully converted a number of domestic reactors, challenges still lie ahead as the United States continues to research what will be needed to convert its high-performance research reactors.

Throughout the first two days of the symposium, particularly during discussions of the case studies, one of the most frequently discussed issues involved fuel development. It was noted that the focus of U. The opinion was expressed by several individuals on the U. It was observed that it may be possible in the near future to successfully convert many of the reactors discussed in this chapter without significant degradation in mission. However, particularly on the Russian side, it appears that the. Several Russian participants noted that such an economic analysis will be essential in the coming years.

Austin, K. Available at www. Cook, D. Presentation to the Research Reactor Conversion Symposium. June 9. Chernyshov, V. Kryuchkov, E. Nasonov, V. Conversion of the IR-8 Reactor. Newton, T. Pavshuk, B. Classification of Reactors by Type of Task. Starkov, V.

Tzibulnikov, Yu. June 8.


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Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Nuclear Glossary. Available at: www. Vitiello, B. Masters Thesis, University of Wisconsin-Madison. Wilson, P. Highly enriched uranium HEU is used for two major civilian purposes: as fuel for research reactors and as targets for medical isotope production. This material can be dangerous in the wrong hands. Stolen or diverted HEU can be used-in conjunction with some knowledge of physics-to build nuclear explosive devices. Thus, the continued civilian use of HEU is of concern particularly because this material may not be uniformly well-protected.

Progress, Challenges, and Opportunities for Converting U. This report addresses: 1 recent progress on conversion of research reactors, with a focus on U. The agenda for the symposium is provided in Appendix A, biographical sketches of the committee members are provided in Appendix B, and the report concludes with the statement of task in Appendix C.

Based on feedback from you, our users, we've made some improvements that make it easier than ever to read thousands of publications on our website. Jump up to the previous page or down to the next one. Also, you can type in a page number and press Enter to go directly to that page in the book. Switch between the Original Pages , where you can read the report as it appeared in print, and Text Pages for the web version, where you can highlight and search the text. To search the entire text of this book, type in your search term here and press Enter.

Ready to take your reading offline? Click here to buy this book in print or download it as a free PDF, if available. Do you enjoy reading reports from the Academies online for free? Sign up for email notifications and we'll let you know about new publications in your areas of interest when they're released. Get This Book. Visit NAP. Looking for other ways to read this? No thanks. As was discussed in Chapter 2 , there are several analyses that need to be performed to enable conversion of a research reactor from HEU fuel to LEU fuel: 1.

Page 62 Share Cite. Page 63 Share Cite. Neutronics Analysis A number of key neutronics analyses were performed for a range of reactor core states, including the beginning-of-life, middle-of-life, and end-of-life states. Page 64 Share Cite. Page 65 Share Cite. Page 66 Share Cite. Accident Analysis The potential for a fission product release under accident conditions was analyzed for a maximum hypothetical accident consisting of cladding failure in the high-power fuel assembly 25 kW after continuous full-power operation.

Page 67 Share Cite. Results of Conversion and Future Plans Although the overall conversion experience was positive, the converted reactor core behaved somewhat differently than the calculated core.

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Page 68 Share Cite. Page 69 Share Cite. Page 70 Share Cite. Safety Analysis Prior to beginning the conversion analysis, some safety analysis parameters at MITR were not well known, particularly for the finned cladding. Page 71 Share Cite. Page 72 Share Cite. Page 73 Share Cite. Page 74 Share Cite. Page 75 Share Cite. Page 76 Share Cite.

Other Challenges The identified changes in power, nuclear characteristics, and fuel weight will affect the HFIR facility infrastructure. Page 77 Share Cite. IR-8 Kurchatov Institute, Moscow ; 3. Page 78 Share Cite. Starkov The MIR. Page 79 Share Cite. Page 80 Share Cite. Page 81 Share Cite. Argus V. IR-8 V. Page 82 Share Cite. IRT-T Yu. Page 83 Share Cite. IRT E. Page 84 Share Cite. The most capable tool available to us for modelling these multi-dimensional effects is computational fluid dynamics CFD.

Modern CFD is able to produce high-quality predictions flows in complex geometries, but only with the use of large computing resources. However, much of the primary circuit may be able to be modelled with adequate fidelity using a cheap one-dimensional systems code, and it may only be in a limited part of the circuit that full 3-dimensional effects are important. The natural response to this is to develop methods where simple one-dimensional models are replied where they are appropriate, but where these are then coupled to full 3-dimensional treatments of those parts of the system which require it.

David Harland. The core aim of this project is to help towards understanding heat transfer in non-circular channels of high aspect ratio, with partial blockages perturbing flow. Towards this end, secondary flows must be taken into account in the modelling process. The first stage of this project is to calculate the flow field in channels of appropriate rectangular geometry using a variety of computational tools.

One interesting feature of this approach is a comparison of the various models and an establishment of the level of complexity required to obtain a valuable solution to the problem. Secondly, it is necessary to carry out very detailed measurements of the flow fields in rectangular channels of appropriate size using an appropriate laser-based technique such as PIV. A detailed comparison of CFD simulations with experimental results will allow validation of the choice of turbulence model.

Additionally, simulations and measurements will be carried out in channels after having introduced small blockages, such as gas bubbles. The previously validated models will again be compared with experimental results to gain further insight. A possible extension to the project would be gaining an understanding of the mechanisms involved in bubble detachment and their removal by advection. In addition to this, the formulation is itself unrepresentative of the many interacting heat transfer mechanisms at work during the boiling process. These factors impose an upper bound on the predictive capability and range of application of the CFD code, which limits its usefulness as an engineering tool.

Giovanni Giustini. Frederic Sebilleau. Morgan Cowper. The neutron transport equation frequently needs to be solved on extremely complex geometries, usually incorporating conic sections.