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Title: RHF RELAP5 model and preliminary loss-of-offsite-power simulation results for LEU conversion

Abstract

The purpose of this document is to describe the current state of the RELAP5 model for the Institut Laue-Langevin High Flux Reactor (RHF) located in Grenoble, France, and provide an update to the key information required to complete, for example, simulations for a loss of offsite power (LOOP) accident. A previous status report identified a list of 22 items to be resolved in order to complete the RELAP5 model. Most of these items have been resolved by ANL and the RHF team. Enough information was available to perform preliminary safety analyses and define the key items that are still required. Section 2 of this document describes the RELAP5 model of RHF. The final part of this section briefly summarizes previous model issues and resolutions. Section 3 of this document describes preliminary LOOP simulations for both HEU and LEU fuel at beginning of cycle conditions.

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [1];  [2]
  1. Argonne National Laboratory (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States). Nuclear Engineering Div.
  2. Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL), Grenoble (Switzerland). RHF Reactor Dept.
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
OSTI Identifier:
1168228
Report Number(s):
ANL/GTRI/TM-14/7
DOE Contract Number:
AC02-06CH11357
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
ENGLISH
Subject:
98 NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT, SAFEGUARDS, AND PHYSICAL PROTECTION

Citation Formats

Licht, J. R., Bergeron, A., Dionne, B., and Thomas, F.. RHF RELAP5 model and preliminary loss-of-offsite-power simulation results for LEU conversion. United States: N. p., 2014. Web. doi:10.2172/1168228.
Licht, J. R., Bergeron, A., Dionne, B., & Thomas, F.. RHF RELAP5 model and preliminary loss-of-offsite-power simulation results for LEU conversion. United States. doi:10.2172/1168228.
Licht, J. R., Bergeron, A., Dionne, B., and Thomas, F.. Fri . "RHF RELAP5 model and preliminary loss-of-offsite-power simulation results for LEU conversion". United States. doi:10.2172/1168228. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1168228.
@article{osti_1168228,
title = {RHF RELAP5 model and preliminary loss-of-offsite-power simulation results for LEU conversion},
author = {Licht, J. R. and Bergeron, A. and Dionne, B. and Thomas, F.},
abstractNote = {The purpose of this document is to describe the current state of the RELAP5 model for the Institut Laue-Langevin High Flux Reactor (RHF) located in Grenoble, France, and provide an update to the key information required to complete, for example, simulations for a loss of offsite power (LOOP) accident. A previous status report identified a list of 22 items to be resolved in order to complete the RELAP5 model. Most of these items have been resolved by ANL and the RHF team. Enough information was available to perform preliminary safety analyses and define the key items that are still required. Section 2 of this document describes the RELAP5 model of RHF. The final part of this section briefly summarizes previous model issues and resolutions. Section 3 of this document describes preliminary LOOP simulations for both HEU and LEU fuel at beginning of cycle conditions.},
doi = {10.2172/1168228},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Fri Aug 01 00:00:00 EDT 2014},
month = {Fri Aug 01 00:00:00 EDT 2014}
}

Technical Report:

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  • This report presents a code assessment study based on a real plant transient that occurred on June 9, 1981 at the KNU {number sign}1 (Korea Nuclear Unit Number 1). KNU {number sign}1 is a two-loop Westinghouse PWR plant of 587 Mwe. The loss of offsite power transient occurred at the 77.5% reactor power with 0.5%/hr power ramp. The real plant data were collected from available on-line plant records and computer diagnostics. The transient was simulated by RELAP5/MOD2/36.05 and the results were compared with the plant data to assess the code weaknesses and strengths. Some nodalization studies were performed to contributemore » to developing a guideline for PWR nodalization for the transient analysis. 5 refs., 18 figs., 3 tabs.« less
  • The High Flux Reactor (RHF) of the Laue Langevin Institute (ILL) based in Grenoble, France is a research reactor designed primarily for neutron beam experiments for fundamental science. It delivers one of the most intense neutron fluxes worldwide, with an unperturbed thermal neutron flux of 1.5 x 10{sup 15} n/cm{sup 2}/s in its reflector. The reactor has been conceived to operate at a nuclear power of 57 MW but currently operates at 52 MW. The reactor currently uses a Highly Enriched Uranium (HEU) fuel. In the framework of its non-proliferation policies, the international community presently aims to minimize the amountmore » of nuclear material available that could be used for nuclear weapons. In this geopolitical context, most worldwide research and test reactors have already started a program of conversion to the use of Low Enriched Uranium (LEU) fuel. A new type of LEU fuel based on a mixture of uranium and molybdenum (UMo) is expected to allow the conversion of compact high performance reactors like the RHF. This report presents the results of reactor design, performance and steady state safety analyses for conversion of the RHF from the use of HEU fuel to the use of UMo LEU fuel. The objective of this work was to show that is feasible, under a set of manufacturing assumptions, to design a new RHF fuel element that could safely replace the HEU element currently used. The new proposed design has been developed to maximize performance, minimize changes and preserve strong safety margins. Neutronics and thermal-hydraulics models of the RHF have been developed and qualified by benchmark against experiments and/or against other codes and models. The models developed were then used to evaluate the RHF performance if LEU UMo were to replace the current HEU fuel 'meat' without any geometric change to the fuel plates. Results of these direct replacement analyses have shown a significant degradation of the RHF performance, in terms of both neutron flux and cycle length. Consequently, ANL and ILL have collaborated to investigate alternative designs. A promising candidate design has been selected and studied, increasing the total amount of fuel without changing the external plate dimensions by relocating the burnable poison. In this way, changes required in the fuel element are reasonably small. With this new design, neutronics analyses have shown that performance could be maintained at a high level: 2 day decrease of cycle length (to 47.5 days at 58.3 MW) and 1-2% decrease of brightness in the cold and hot sources in comparison to the current typical operation. In addition, studies have shown that the thermal-hydraulic and shutdown margins for the proposed LEU design would satisfy technical specifications.« less
  • An anticipated transient without scram (ATWS), initiated by loss-of-offsite power, was experimentally simulated in the Loss-of-Fluid Test (LOFT) pressurized water reactor (PWR). Primary system pressure was controlled using a scaled safety relief valve (SRV) representative of those in a commercial PWR, while reactor power was reduced by moderator reactivity feedback in a natural circulation mode. The experiment showed that reactor power decreases more rapidly when the primary pumps are tripped in a loss-of-offsite-power ATWS than in a loss-of-feedwater induced ATWS when the primary pumps are left on. During the experiment, the SRV had sufficient relief capacity to control primary systemmore » pressure. Natural circulation was effective in removing core heat at high temperature, pressure, and core power. The system transient response predicted using the RELAP5/MOD1 computer code showed good agreement with the experimental data.« less
  • The Transient Reactor Test Facility (TREAT), located at Idaho National Laboratory (INL), is a test facility designed to evaluate the performance of reactor fuels and materials under transient accident conditions. The facility, an air-cooled, graphite-moderated reactor designed to utilize fuel containing high-enriched uranium (HEU), has been in non-operational standby status since 1994. Currently, in support of the missions of the Department of Energy (DOE) National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Material Management and Minimization (M3) Reactor Conversion Program, a new core design is being developed for TREAT that will utilize low-enriched uranium (LEU). The primary objective of this conversion effort ismore » to design an LEU core that is capable of meeting the performance characteristics of the existing HEU core. Minimal, if any, changes are anticipated for the supporting systems (e.g. reactor trip system, filtration/cooling system, etc.); therefore, the LEU core must also be able to function with the existing supporting systems, and must also satisfy acceptable safety limits. In support of the LEU conversion effort, a range of ancillary safety analyses are required to evaluate the LEU core operation relative to that of the existing facility. These analyses cover neutronics, shielding, and thermal hydraulic topics that have been identified as having the potential to have reduced safety margins due to conversion to LEU fuel, or are required to support the required safety analyses documentation. The majority of these ancillary tasks have been identified in [1] and [2]. The purpose of this report is to document the ancillary safety analyses that have been performed at Argonne National Laboratory during the early stages of the LEU design effort, and to describe ongoing and anticipated analyses. For all analyses presented in this report, methodologies are utilized that are consistent with, or improved from, those used in analyses for the HEU Final Safety Analysis Report (FSAR) [3]. Depending on the availability of historical data derived from HEU TREAT operation, results calculated for the LEU core are compared to measurements obtained from HEU TREAT operation. While all analyses in this report are largely considered complete and have been reviewed for technical content, it is important to note that all topics will be revisited once the LEU design approaches its final stages of maturity. For most safety significant issues, it is expected that the analyses presented here will be bounding, but additional calculations will be performed as necessary to support safety analyses and safety documentation. It should also be noted that these analyses were completed as the LEU design evolved, and therefore utilized different LEU reference designs. Preliminary shielding, neutronic, and thermal hydraulic analyses have been completed and have generally demonstrated that the various LEU core designs will satisfy existing safety limits and standards also satisfied by the existing HEU core. These analyses include the assessment of the dose rate in the hodoscope room, near a loaded fuel transfer cask, above the fuel storage area, and near the HEPA filters. The potential change in the concentration of tramp uranium and change in neutron flux reaching instrumentation has also been assessed. Safety-significant thermal hydraulic items addressed in this report include thermally-induced mechanical distortion of the grid plate, and heating in the radial reflector.« less