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Title: Impact of Closed Brayton Cycle Test Results on Gas Cooled Reactor Operation and Safety.

Abstract

Abstract not provided.

Authors:
;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
OSTI Identifier:
1267122
Report Number(s):
SAND2007-0638C
524089
DOE Contract Number:
AC04-94AL85000
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: Proposed for presentation at the 2007 International Congress on Advances in Nuclear Power Plants held May 13-18, 2007 in NICE, France.
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English

Citation Formats

Wright, Steven A, and Pickard, Paul S. Impact of Closed Brayton Cycle Test Results on Gas Cooled Reactor Operation and Safety.. United States: N. p., 2007. Web.
Wright, Steven A, & Pickard, Paul S. Impact of Closed Brayton Cycle Test Results on Gas Cooled Reactor Operation and Safety.. United States.
Wright, Steven A, and Pickard, Paul S. Thu . "Impact of Closed Brayton Cycle Test Results on Gas Cooled Reactor Operation and Safety.". United States. doi:. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1267122.
@article{osti_1267122,
title = {Impact of Closed Brayton Cycle Test Results on Gas Cooled Reactor Operation and Safety.},
author = {Wright, Steven A and Pickard, Paul S.},
abstractNote = {Abstract not provided.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Thu Feb 01 00:00:00 EST 2007},
month = {Thu Feb 01 00:00:00 EST 2007}
}

Conference:
Other availability
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  • A gas-cooled reactor may be coupled directly to turbomachinery to form a closed-Brayton-cycle (CBC) system in which the CBC working fluid serves as the reactor coolant. Such a system has the potential to be a very simple and robust space-reactor power system. Gas-cooled reactors have been built and operated in the past, but very few have been coupled directly to the turbomachinery in this fashion. In this paper we describe the option for testing such a system with a small reactor and turbomachinery at Sandia National Laboratories. Sandia currently operates the Annular Core Research Reactor (ACRR) at steady-state powers upmore » to 4 MW and has an adjacent facility with heavy shielding in which another reactor recently operated. Sandia also has a closed-Brayton-Cycle test bed with a converted commercial turbomachinery unit that is rated for up to 30 kWe of power. It is proposed to construct a small experimental gas-cooled reactor core and attach this via ducting to the CBC turbomachinery for cooling and electricity production. Calculations suggest that such a unit could produce about 20 kWe, which would be a good power level for initial surface power units on the Moon or Mars. The intent of this experiment is to demonstrate the stable start-up and operation of such a system. Of particular interest is the effect of a negative temperature power coefficient as the initially cold Brayton gas passes through the core during startup or power changes. Sandia's dynamic model for such a system would be compared with the performance data. This paper describes the neutronics, heat transfer, and cycle dynamics of this proposed system. Safety and radiation issues are presented. The views expressed in this document are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect agreement by the government.« less
  • A gas-cooled reactor may be coupled directly to turbomachinery to form a closed-Brayton-cycle (CBC) system in which the CBC working fluid serves as the reactor coolant. Such a system has the potential to be a very simple and robust space-reactor power system. Gas-cooled reactors have been built and operated in the past, but very few have been coupled directly to the turbomachinery in this fashion. In this paper we describe the option for testing such a system with a small reactor and turbomachinery at Sandia National Laboratories. Sandia currently operates the Annular Core Research Reactor (ACRR) at steady-state powers upmore » to 4 MW and has an adjacent facility with heavy shielding in which another reactor recently operated. Sandia also has a closed-Brayton-Cycle test bed with a converted commercial turbomachinery unit that is rated for up to 30 kWe of power. It is proposed to construct a small experimental gas-cooled reactor core and attach this via ducting to the CBC turbomachinery for cooling and electricity production. Calculations suggest that such a unit could produce about 20 kWe, which would be a good power level for initial surface power units on the Moon or Mars. The intent of this experiment is to demonstrate the stable start-up and operation of such a system. Of particular interest is the effect of a negative temperature power coefficient as the initially cold Brayton gas passes through the core during startup or power changes. Sandia's dynamic model for such a system would be compared with the performance data. This paper describes the neutronics, heat transfer, and cycle dynamics of this proposed system. Safety and radiation issues are presented. The views expressed in this document are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect agreement by the government.« less
  • A number of space and terrestrial power system designs plan to use nuclear reactors that are coupled to Closed-loop Brayton Cycle (CBC) systems to generate electrical power. Because very little experience exists regarding the operational behavior of these systems, Sandia National Laboratories (through its Laboratory Directed Research and Development program) is developing a closed-loop test bed that can be used to determine the operational behavior of these systems and to validate models for these systems. Sandia has contracted Barber-Nichols Corporation to design, fabricate, and assemble a Closed-loop Brayton Cycle (CBC) system. This system was developed by modifying commercially available hardware.more » It uses a 30 kWe Capstone C-30 gas-turbine unit (www.capstoneturbine.com) with a modified housing that permits the attachment of an electrical heater and a water cooled chiller that are connected to the turbo-machinery in a closed loop. The test-loop reuses the Capstone turbine, compressor, and alternator. The Capstone system's nominal operating point is 1150 K turbine inlet temperature at 96,000 rpm. The annular recuperator and portions of the Capstone control system (inverter) and starter system are also reused. The rotational speed of the turbo-machinery is controlled either by adjusting the alternator load by either using the electrical grid or a separate load bank. This report describes the test-loop hardware SBL-30 (Sandia Brayton Loop-30kWe). Also presented are results of early testing and modeling of the unit. The SBL-30 hardware is currently configured with a heater that is limited to 80 kW{sub th} with a maximum outlet temperature of {approx}1000 K.« less
  • This paper describes preliminary results of a dynamic system model for a closed-loop Brayton-cycle that is coupled to a nuclear reactor. The current model assumes direct coupling between the reactor and the Brayton-cycle, however only minor additions are required to couple the Brayton-cycle through a heat exchanger to either a heat pipe reactor or a liquid metal cooled reactor. Few reactors have ever been coupled to closed Brayton-cycle systems. As such their behavior under dynamically varying loads, startup and shut down conditions, and requirements for safe and autonomous operation are largely unknown. Sandia National Laboratories has developed steady-state and dynamicmore » models for closed-loop turbo-compressor systems (for space and terrestrial applications). These models are expected to provide a basic understanding of the dynamic behavior and stability of the coupled reactor and power generation loop. The model described in this paper is a lumped parameter model of the reactor, turbine, compressor, recuperator, radiator/waste-heat-rejection system and generator. More detailed models that remove the lumped parameter simplifications are also being developed but are not presented here. The initial results of the model indicate stable operation of the reactor-driven Brayton-cycle system and its ability to load-follow. However, the model also indicates some counter-intuitive behavior for the complete coupled system. This behavior will require the use of a reactor control system to select an appropriate reactor operating temperature that will optimize the performance of the complete spacecraft system. We expect this model and subsequent versions of it to provide crucial information in developing procedures for safe start up, shut down, safe-standby, and other autonomous operating modes. Ultimately, Sandia hopes to validate these models and to perform nuclear ground tests of reactor-driven closed Brayton-cycle systems in our nuclear research facilities.« less
  • A conceptual design of a direct Brayton-cycle marine power plant is presented. The design is a modification of the commercial MGR-GT, as proposed by James Staudt, sized to produce 40,000 shaft horsepower (SHP) and 5 MW of ship-service electrical power. The requirements of a shipboard power plant are discussed, and the design changes that must be made to the components of a commercial power plant in order to fit them into the demanding environment of a ship at sea are detailed. The final design consists of an 80-MWth passively-safe pebble-bed reactor with an outlet temperature of 850.