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Title: Thermal-Mechanical Studies for Gas-Cooled Space Reactor Designs

Abstract

Los Alamos National Laboratory has been involved in the development of reactor concepts to be used as a power source for nuclear electric propulsion and/or for surface power sources. As part of this effort, a high fidelity thermal-mechanical analysis method has been developed for rapid performance assessments of these designs. This method has been used to study several concept alternatives, including both annular and multi-hole monolithic block designs. This paper presents the analysis method developed and results of analyses performed for a gas-cooled reactor. Key results are 1) the annular block design is lower mass than the multi-hole block design, 2) fuel temperatures are effectively controlled by adjusting the number of fuel pins in the core, 3) large thermal-hydraulic performance enhancements are produced by increasing coolant pressure and/or helium mole fraction, and 4) manufacturing and assembly parameters have relatively small effects on thermal-hydraulic performance and care should be taken to balance mechanical design complexity and reliability issues with thermal-hydraulic performance.

Authors:
;  [1]
  1. Nuclear Systems Design, Decision Applications Division, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM 87545 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
20798018
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: AIP Conference Proceedings; Journal Volume: 813; Journal Issue: 1; Conference: 10. conference on thermophysics applications in microgravity; 23. symposium on space nuclear power and propulsion; 4. conference on human/robotic technology and the national vision for space exploration; 4. symposium on space colonization; 3. symposium on new frontiers and future concepts, Albuquerque, NM (United States), 12-16 Feb 2006; Other Information: DOI: 10.1063/1.2169258; (c) 2006 American Institute of Physics; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
72 PHYSICS OF ELEMENTARY PARTICLES AND FIELDS; 21 SPECIFIC NUCLEAR REACTORS AND ASSOCIATED PLANTS; COOLANTS; DESIGN; EVALUATION; FISSION; FUEL PINS; GAS COOLED REACTORS; HELIUM; MANUFACTURING; NUCLEAR FUELS; PERFORMANCE; POWER GENERATION; PROPULSION; SPACE; SPACE VEHICLES; SURFACES; THERMAL HYDRAULICS; NESDPS Office of Nuclear Energy Space and Defense Power Systems

Citation Formats

Kapernick, Richard J., and Creamer, William C. Thermal-Mechanical Studies for Gas-Cooled Space Reactor Designs. United States: N. p., 2006. Web. doi:10.1063/1.2169258.
Kapernick, Richard J., & Creamer, William C. Thermal-Mechanical Studies for Gas-Cooled Space Reactor Designs. United States. doi:10.1063/1.2169258.
Kapernick, Richard J., and Creamer, William C. Fri . "Thermal-Mechanical Studies for Gas-Cooled Space Reactor Designs". United States. doi:10.1063/1.2169258.
@article{osti_20798018,
title = {Thermal-Mechanical Studies for Gas-Cooled Space Reactor Designs},
author = {Kapernick, Richard J. and Creamer, William C.},
abstractNote = {Los Alamos National Laboratory has been involved in the development of reactor concepts to be used as a power source for nuclear electric propulsion and/or for surface power sources. As part of this effort, a high fidelity thermal-mechanical analysis method has been developed for rapid performance assessments of these designs. This method has been used to study several concept alternatives, including both annular and multi-hole monolithic block designs. This paper presents the analysis method developed and results of analyses performed for a gas-cooled reactor. Key results are 1) the annular block design is lower mass than the multi-hole block design, 2) fuel temperatures are effectively controlled by adjusting the number of fuel pins in the core, 3) large thermal-hydraulic performance enhancements are produced by increasing coolant pressure and/or helium mole fraction, and 4) manufacturing and assembly parameters have relatively small effects on thermal-hydraulic performance and care should be taken to balance mechanical design complexity and reliability issues with thermal-hydraulic performance.},
doi = {10.1063/1.2169258},
journal = {AIP Conference Proceedings},
number = 1,
volume = 813,
place = {United States},
year = {Fri Jan 20 00:00:00 EST 2006},
month = {Fri Jan 20 00:00:00 EST 2006}
}