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Title: Thermal-Hydraulic Simulations of Single Pin and Assembly Sector for IVG- 1M Reactor

Thermal-hydraulic simulations have been performed using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) for the highly-enriched uranium (HEU) design of the IVG.1M reactor at the Institute of Atomic Energy (IAE) at the National Nuclear Center (NNC) in the Republic of Kazakhstan. Steady-state simulations were performed for both types of fuel assembly (FA), i.e. the FA in rows 1 & 2 and the FA in row 3, as well as for single pins in those FA (600 mm and 800 mm pins). Both single pin calculations and bundle sectors have been simulated for the most conservative operating conditions corresponding to the 10 MW output power, which corresponds to a pin unit cell Reynolds number of only about 7500. Simulations were performed using the commercial code STAR-CCM+ for the actual twisted pin geometry as well as a straight-pin approximation. Various Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) turbulence models gave different results, and so some validation runs with a higher-fidelity Large Eddy Simulation (LES) code were performed given the lack of experimental data. These singled out the Realizable Two-Layer k-ε as the most accurate turbulence model for estimating surface temperature. Single-pin results for the twisted case, based on the average flow rate per pin and peak pin power, weremore » conservative for peak clad surface temperature compared to the bundle results. Also the straight-pin calculations were conservative as compared to the twisted pin simulations, as expected, but the single-pin straight case was not always conservative with regard to the straight-pin bundle. This was due to the straight-pin temperature distribution being strongly influenced by the pin orientation, particularly near the outer boundary. The straight-pin case also predicted the peak temperature to be in a different location than the twisted-pin case. This is a limitation of the straight-pin approach. The peak temperature pin was in a different location from the peak power pin in every case simulated, and occurred at an inner pin just before the enrichment change. The 600 mm case demonstrated a peak clad surface temperature of 370.4 K, while the 800 mm case had a temperature of 391.6 K. These temperatures are well below the necessary temperatures for boiling to occur at the rated pressure. Fuel temperatures are also well below the melting point. Future bundle work will include simulations of the proposed low-enriched uranium (LEU) design. Two transient scenarios were also investigated for the single-pin geometries. Both were “model” problems that were focused on pure thermal-hydraulic behavior, and as such were simple power changes that did not incorporate neutron kinetics modeling. The first scenario was a high-power, ramp increase, while the second scenario was a low-power, step increase. A cylindrical RELAP model was also constructed to investigate its accuracy as compared to the higher-fidelity CFD. Comparisons between the two codes showed good agreement for peak temperatures in the fuel and at the cladding surface for both cases. In the step transient, temperatures at four axial levels were also computed. These showed greater but reasonable discrepancy, with RELAP outputting higher temperatures. These results provide some evidence that RELAP can be used with confidence in modeling transients for IVG.« less
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  1. Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)
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Technical Report
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Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)
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United States