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Title: Developing Diagnostic Tools for Low-Burnup Reactor Samples

Abstract

We test common neutron fluence diagnostics in the very-low-burnup regime for natural uranium reactor samples. The fluence diagnostics considered are the uranium isotopics ratios 235U / 238U and 236U/ 235U, for which we find that simple analytic formulas agree well with full reactor simulation predictions. Both ratios agree reasonably well with one another for fluences in the (mid -10 19) - n/cm 2 range. However, below about 10 19 n/cm 2, the concentrations of 236U are found to be sufficiently low that the measured 236U/ 235U ratios become unreliable. We also derive and test diagnostics to determine the cooling times in situations where very low burnup and very long cooling times render many standard diagnostics impractical, such as the 241Am / 241Pu ratio. Here, we find that using several fragment ratios is necessary to detect the presence of systematic errors such as fractionation.

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [2]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [1]; ORCiD logo [1]
  1. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
  2. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Louisiana State Univ., Baton Rouge, LA (United States). Dept. of Geology and Geophysics
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) Program
OSTI Identifier:
1504647
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1406152
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-16-26969
Journal ID: ISSN 2331-7019; PRAHB2
Grant/Contract Number:  
89233218CNA000001
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Physical Review Applied
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 8; Journal Issue: 4; Journal ID: ISSN 2331-7019
Publisher:
American Physical Society (APS)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
73 NUCLEAR PHYSICS AND RADIATION PHYSICS

Citation Formats

Jaffke, Patrick John, Byerly, Benjamin, Doyle, Jamie, Hayes-Sterbenz, Anna Catherine, Jungman, Gerard, Myers, Steven Charles, Olson, Angela Christine, Porterfield, Donivan R., and Tandon, Lav. Developing Diagnostic Tools for Low-Burnup Reactor Samples. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1103/PhysRevApplied.8.044025.
Jaffke, Patrick John, Byerly, Benjamin, Doyle, Jamie, Hayes-Sterbenz, Anna Catherine, Jungman, Gerard, Myers, Steven Charles, Olson, Angela Christine, Porterfield, Donivan R., & Tandon, Lav. Developing Diagnostic Tools for Low-Burnup Reactor Samples. United States. doi:10.1103/PhysRevApplied.8.044025.
Jaffke, Patrick John, Byerly, Benjamin, Doyle, Jamie, Hayes-Sterbenz, Anna Catherine, Jungman, Gerard, Myers, Steven Charles, Olson, Angela Christine, Porterfield, Donivan R., and Tandon, Lav. Tue . "Developing Diagnostic Tools for Low-Burnup Reactor Samples". United States. doi:10.1103/PhysRevApplied.8.044025. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1504647.
@article{osti_1504647,
title = {Developing Diagnostic Tools for Low-Burnup Reactor Samples},
author = {Jaffke, Patrick John and Byerly, Benjamin and Doyle, Jamie and Hayes-Sterbenz, Anna Catherine and Jungman, Gerard and Myers, Steven Charles and Olson, Angela Christine and Porterfield, Donivan R. and Tandon, Lav},
abstractNote = {We test common neutron fluence diagnostics in the very-low-burnup regime for natural uranium reactor samples. The fluence diagnostics considered are the uranium isotopics ratios 235U /238U and 236U/235U, for which we find that simple analytic formulas agree well with full reactor simulation predictions. Both ratios agree reasonably well with one another for fluences in the (mid -1019) - n/cm2 range. However, below about 1019 n/cm2, the concentrations of 236U are found to be sufficiently low that the measured 236U/235U ratios become unreliable. We also derive and test diagnostics to determine the cooling times in situations where very low burnup and very long cooling times render many standard diagnostics impractical, such as the 241Am /241Pu ratio. Here, we find that using several fragment ratios is necessary to detect the presence of systematic errors such as fractionation.},
doi = {10.1103/PhysRevApplied.8.044025},
journal = {Physical Review Applied},
number = 4,
volume = 8,
place = {United States},
year = {2017},
month = {10}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record

Figures / Tables:

FIG. 1 FIG. 1: Relative abundances of several fission fragments from a simulation of an irradiation history consisting of 4 [5, 19]hr ON/OFF periods and a thermal flux of φt = 8.5 × 1013 n/cm2/sec beginning with natural uranium. The simulation uses CINDER08 cross-sections and the decay data was allowed to varymore » between ENDF7, JEFF, and JENDL, with no observed difference. Linear fragments show no dependence on the layer of nuclear data.« less

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    Figures/Tables have been extracted from DOE-funded journal article accepted manuscripts.