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Title: Determining Reactor Fuel Type from Continuous Antineutrino Monitoring

Abstract

In this work, we investigate the ability of an antineutrino detector to determine the fuel type of a reactor. A hypothetical 5-ton antineutrino detector is placed 25 m from the core and measures the spectral shape and rate of antineutrinos emitted by fission fragments in the core for a number of 90-d periods. Our results indicate that four major fuel types can be differentiated from the variation of fission fractions over the irradiation time with a true positive probability of detection at approximately 95%. In addition, we demonstrate that antineutrinos can identify the burnup at which weapons-grade mixed-oxide (MOX) fuel would be reduced to reactor-grade MOX, on average, providing assurance that plutonium-disposition goals are met. We also investigate removal scenarios where plutonium is purposefully diverted from a mixture of MOX and low-enriched uranium fuel. Lastly, we discuss how our analysis is impacted by a spectral distortion around 6 MeV observed in the antineutrino spectrum measured from commercial power reactors.

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [2]
  1. Virginia Polytechnic Inst. and State Univ. (Virginia Tech), Blacksburg, VA (United States); Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
  2. Virginia Polytechnic Inst. and State Univ. (Virginia Tech), Blacksburg, VA (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
OSTI Identifier:
1483497
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1380066
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-16-29320
Journal ID: ISSN 2331-7019; PRAHB2
Grant/Contract Number:  
89233218CNA000001; AC52-07NA27344
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Physical Review Applied
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 8; Journal Issue: 3; Journal ID: ISSN 2331-7019
Publisher:
American Physical Society (APS)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
73 NUCLEAR PHYSICS AND RADIATION PHYSICS; 22 GENERAL STUDIES OF NUCLEAR REACTORS

Citation Formats

Jaffke, Patrick John, and Huber, Patrick. Determining Reactor Fuel Type from Continuous Antineutrino Monitoring. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1103/PhysRevApplied.8.034005.
Jaffke, Patrick John, & Huber, Patrick. Determining Reactor Fuel Type from Continuous Antineutrino Monitoring. United States. doi:10.1103/PhysRevApplied.8.034005.
Jaffke, Patrick John, and Huber, Patrick. Fri . "Determining Reactor Fuel Type from Continuous Antineutrino Monitoring". United States. doi:10.1103/PhysRevApplied.8.034005. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1483497.
@article{osti_1483497,
title = {Determining Reactor Fuel Type from Continuous Antineutrino Monitoring},
author = {Jaffke, Patrick John and Huber, Patrick},
abstractNote = {In this work, we investigate the ability of an antineutrino detector to determine the fuel type of a reactor. A hypothetical 5-ton antineutrino detector is placed 25 m from the core and measures the spectral shape and rate of antineutrinos emitted by fission fragments in the core for a number of 90-d periods. Our results indicate that four major fuel types can be differentiated from the variation of fission fractions over the irradiation time with a true positive probability of detection at approximately 95%. In addition, we demonstrate that antineutrinos can identify the burnup at which weapons-grade mixed-oxide (MOX) fuel would be reduced to reactor-grade MOX, on average, providing assurance that plutonium-disposition goals are met. We also investigate removal scenarios where plutonium is purposefully diverted from a mixture of MOX and low-enriched uranium fuel. Lastly, we discuss how our analysis is impacted by a spectral distortion around 6 MeV observed in the antineutrino spectrum measured from commercial power reactors.},
doi = {10.1103/PhysRevApplied.8.034005},
journal = {Physical Review Applied},
issn = {2331-7019},
number = 3,
volume = 8,
place = {United States},
year = {2017},
month = {9}
}

Journal Article:
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Cited by: 1 work
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