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Title: Validation of the MULCH-II code for thermal-hydraulic safety analysis of the MIT research reactor conversion to LEU.

Abstract

An in-house thermal hydraulics code was developed for the steady-state and loss of primary flow analysis of the MIT Research Reactor (MITR). This code is designated as MULti-CHannel-II or MULCH-II. The MULCH-II code is being used for the MITR LEU conversion design study. Features of the MULCH-II code include a multi-channel analysis, the capability to model the transition from forced to natural convection during a loss of primary flow transient, and the ability to calculate safety limits and limiting safety system settings for licensing applications. This paper describes the validation of the code against PLTEMP/ANL 3.0 for steady-state analysis, and against RELAP5-3D for loss of primary coolant transient analysis. Coolant temperature measurements obtained from loss of primary flow transients as part of the MITR-II startup testing were also used for validating this code. The agreement between MULCH-II and the other computer codes is satisfactory.

Authors:
; ; ; ; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
OSTI Identifier:
971169
Report Number(s):
ANL/NE/CP-60723
TRN: US1001050
DOE Contract Number:
DE-AC02-06CH11357
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: 2007 RERTR International Meeting; Sep. 23, 2007 - Sep. 27, 2007; Prague, Czech Republic
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
ENGLISH
Subject:
22 GENERAL STUDIES OF NUCLEAR REACTORS; COMPUTER CODES; COOLANTS; DESIGN; LICENSING; NATURAL CONVECTION; RESEARCH REACTORS; SAFETY; SAFETY ANALYSIS; TEMPERATURE MEASUREMENT; TESTING; THERMAL HYDRAULICS; TRANSIENTS; VALIDATION

Citation Formats

Ko, Y. C., Hu, L. W., Olson, A. P., Dunn, F. E., Nuclear Engineering Division, and MIT. Validation of the MULCH-II code for thermal-hydraulic safety analysis of the MIT research reactor conversion to LEU.. United States: N. p., 2007. Web.
Ko, Y. C., Hu, L. W., Olson, A. P., Dunn, F. E., Nuclear Engineering Division, & MIT. Validation of the MULCH-II code for thermal-hydraulic safety analysis of the MIT research reactor conversion to LEU.. United States.
Ko, Y. C., Hu, L. W., Olson, A. P., Dunn, F. E., Nuclear Engineering Division, and MIT. Mon . "Validation of the MULCH-II code for thermal-hydraulic safety analysis of the MIT research reactor conversion to LEU.". United States. doi:.
@article{osti_971169,
title = {Validation of the MULCH-II code for thermal-hydraulic safety analysis of the MIT research reactor conversion to LEU.},
author = {Ko, Y. C. and Hu, L. W. and Olson, A. P. and Dunn, F. E. and Nuclear Engineering Division and MIT},
abstractNote = {An in-house thermal hydraulics code was developed for the steady-state and loss of primary flow analysis of the MIT Research Reactor (MITR). This code is designated as MULti-CHannel-II or MULCH-II. The MULCH-II code is being used for the MITR LEU conversion design study. Features of the MULCH-II code include a multi-channel analysis, the capability to model the transition from forced to natural convection during a loss of primary flow transient, and the ability to calculate safety limits and limiting safety system settings for licensing applications. This paper describes the validation of the code against PLTEMP/ANL 3.0 for steady-state analysis, and against RELAP5-3D for loss of primary coolant transient analysis. Coolant temperature measurements obtained from loss of primary flow transients as part of the MITR-II startup testing were also used for validating this code. The agreement between MULCH-II and the other computer codes is satisfactory.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Mon Jan 01 00:00:00 EST 2007},
month = {Mon Jan 01 00:00:00 EST 2007}
}

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  • An in-house thermal hydraulics code was developed for the steady-state and loss of primary flow analysis of the MIT Research Reactor (MITR). This code is designated as MULti-CHannel-II or MULCH-II. The MULCH-II code is being used for the MITR LEU conversion design study. Features of the MULCH-II code include a multi-channel analysis, the capability to model the transition from forced to natural convection during a loss of primary flow transient, and the ability to calculate safety limits and limiting safety system settings for licensing applications. This paper describes the validation of the code against PLTEMP/ANL 3.0 for steady-state analysis, andmore » against RELAP5-3D for loss of primary coolant transient analysis. Coolant temperature measurements obtained from loss of primary flow transients as part of the MITR-II startup testing were also used for validating this code. The agreement between MULCH-II and the other computer codes is satisfactory. (author)« less
  • The thermal-hydraulic analysis performed for the needs of the conversion of the open pool 5MW Greek Research Reactor (GRR-1) to a pure Low Enrichment (LEU) configuration is presented. The methodology was based on a complete set of neutronic calculations performed for the new core configuration, in compliance with pre-defined Operation Limiting Conditions. The hottest channel analysis approach was adopted, and peaking factors were used to account for fabrication or measuring uncertainties. Calculations were carried out using the numerical codes NATCON, PLTEMP and PARET provided by Argonne National Laboratory (ANL). Two main different classes of conditions were considered, namely i) steadymore » state normal operating conditions and ii) transient cases related to accidental events including reactivity feedback effects. For steady state operating conditions the behaviour of the new configuration was examined both for forced and natural convection cooling modes. Transient calculations considered several initiating events including reactivity insertion accidents (slow or fast reactivity insertion) and total or partial loss-of-flow accidents, i.e. in accordance to guidelines provided by the IAEA for research Reactors. (author)« less
  • Feasibility design studies for conversion of the MIT Research Reactor (MITR) to LEU are described. Because the reactor fuel has a rhombic cross section, a special input processor was created in order to model the reactor in great detail with the REBUS-PC diffusion theory code, in 3D (triangular-z) geometry. Comparisons are made of fuel assembly power distributions and control blade worth vs. axial position, between REBUS-PC results and Monte Carlo predictions from the MCNP code. Results for the original HEU core at zero burnup are also compared with measurement. These two analysis methods showed remarkable agreement. Ongoing fuel cycle studiesmore » are summarized. A status report will be given as to results thus far that affect key design decisions. Future work plans and schedules to achieve completion of the conversion are presented. (author)« less
  • For safety analyses to support conversion of MNSR reactors from HEU fuel to LEU fuel, a RELAP5-3D model was set up to simulate the entire MNSR system. This model includes the core, the beryllium reflectors, the water in the tank and the water in the surrounding pool. The MCNP code was used to obtain the power distributions in the core and to obtain reactivity feedback coefficients for the transient analyses. The RELAP5-3D model was validated by comparing measured and calculated data for the NIRR-1 reactor in Nigeria. Comparisons include normal operation at constant power and a 3.77 mk rod withdrawalmore » transient. Excellent agreement was obtained for core coolant inlet and outlet temperatures for operation at constant power, and for power level, coolant inlet temperature, and coolant outlet temperature for the rod withdrawal transient. In addition to the negative reactivity feedbacks from increasing core moderator and fuel temperatures, it was necessary to calculate and include positive reactivity feedback from temperature changes in the radial beryllium reflector and changes in the temperature and density of the water in the tank above the core and at the side of the core. The validated RELAP5-3D model was then used to analyze 3.77 mk rod withdrawal transients for LEU cores with two UO{sub 2} fuel pin designs. The impact of cracking of oxide LEU fuel is discussed. In addition, steady-state power operation at elevated power levels was evaluated to determine steady-state safety margins for onset of nucleate boiling and for onset of significant voiding. (author)« less