skip to main content

Title: Criticality of spent reactor fuel

The storage capacity of spent reactor fuel pools can be greatly increased by consolidation. In this process, the fuel rods are removed from reactor fuel assemblies and are stored in close-packed arrays in a canister or skeleton. An earlier study examined criticality consideration for consolidation of Westinghouse fuel, assumed to be fresh, in canisters at the Millstone-2 spent-fuel pool and in the General Electric IF-300 shipping cask. The conclusions were that the fuel rods in the canister are so deficient in water that they are adequately subcritical, both in normal and in off-normal conditions. One potential accident, the water spill event, remained unresolved in the earlier study. A methodology is developed here for spent-fuel criticality and is applied to the water spill event. The methodology utilizes LEOPARD to compute few-group cross sections for the diffusion code PDQ7, which then is used to compute reactivity. These codes give results for fresh fuel that are in good agreement with KENO IV-NITAWL Monte Carlo results, which themselves are in good agreement with continuous energy Monte Carlo calculations. These methodologies are in reasonable agreement with critical measurements for undepleted fuel.
Authors:
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
6900087
Report Number(s):
CONF-8711195-
Journal ID: CODEN: TANSA; TRN: 88-031913
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Trans. Am. Nucl. Soc.; (United States); Journal Volume: 55; Conference: American Nuclear Society winter meeting, Los Angeles, CA, USA, 15 Nov 1987
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
11 NUCLEAR FUEL CYCLE AND FUEL MATERIALS; 21 SPECIFIC NUCLEAR REACTORS AND ASSOCIATED PLANTS; 42 ENGINEERING; CRITICALITY; SAFETY; SPENT FUEL ELEMENTS; TRANSPORT; WESTINGHOUSE STANDARD REACTOR; ACCIDENTS; L CODES; MONTE CARLO METHOD; SPENT FUEL CASKS; SUBCRITICALITY; WATER; CASKS; COMPUTER CODES; CONTAINERS; FUEL ELEMENTS; HYDROGEN COMPOUNDS; OXYGEN COMPOUNDS; PWR TYPE REACTORS; REACTOR COMPONENTS; REACTORS; WATER COOLED REACTORS; WATER MODERATED REACTORS 054000* -- Nuclear Fuels-- Health & Safety; 050900 -- Nuclear Fuels-- Transport, Handling, & Storage; 210200 -- Power Reactors, Nonbreeding, Light-Water Moderated, Nonboiling Water Cooled; 420203 -- Engineering-- Handling Equipment & Procedures