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Title: Diagnosing Undersampling in Monte Carlo Eigenvalue and Flux Tally Estimates

This study explored the impact of undersampling on the accuracy of tally estimates in Monte Carlo (MC) calculations. Steady-state MC simulations were performed for models of several critical systems with varying degrees of spatial and isotopic complexity, and the impact of undersampling on eigenvalue and fuel pin flux/fission estimates was examined. This study observed biases in MC eigenvalue estimates as large as several percent and biases in fuel pin flux/fission tally estimates that exceeded tens, and in some cases hundreds, of percent. This study also investigated five statistical metrics for predicting the occurrence of undersampling biases in MC simulations. Three of the metrics (the Heidelberger-Welch RHW, the Geweke Z-Score, and the Gelman-Rubin diagnostics) are commonly used for diagnosing the convergence of Markov chains, and two of the methods (the Contributing Particles per Generation and Tally Entropy) are new convergence metrics developed in the course of this study. These metrics were implemented in the KENO MC code within the SCALE code system and were evaluated for their reliability at predicting the onset and magnitude of undersampling biases in MC eigenvalue and flux tally estimates in two of the critical models. Of the five methods investigated, the Heidelberger-Welch RHW, the Gelman-Rubin diagnostics,more » and Tally Entropy produced test metrics that correlated strongly to the size of the observed undersampling biases, indicating their potential to effectively predict the size and prevalence of undersampling biases in MC simulations.« less
Authors:
 [1] ;  [1]
  1. ORNL
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
1221732
DOE Contract Number:
DE-AC05-00OR22725
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: ICNC 2015, Charlotte, NC, USA, 20150913, 20150917, San Jose, California United States, 8-13 June 2014
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL)
Sponsoring Org:
NNSA USDOE - National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
97 MATHEMATICS AND COMPUTING; 22 GENERAL STUDIES OF NUCLEAR REACTORS; 42 ENGINEERING