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Transmutation of Americium in Fast Neutron Facilities
KTH, School of Engineering Sciences (SCI), Physics, Reactor Physics. (Reactor Physics)
2011 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In this thesis, the feasibility to use a medium sized sodium cooled fast reactor fully loaded with MOX fuel for efficient transmutation of americium is investigated by simulating the safety performance of a BN600-type fast reactor loaded with different fractions of americium in the fuel, using the safety parameters obtained with the SERPENT Monte Carlo code.

The focus is on americium mainly due to its long-term contribution to the radiotoxicity of spent nuclear fuel and its deterioration on core's safety parameters.

Applying the SAS4A/SASSYS transient analysis code, it is demonstrated that the power rating needs to be reduced by 6% for each percent additional americium introduction into the reference MOX fuel, maintaining 100 K margin to fuel melting, which is the most limiting failure mechanism.Safety analysis of a new Accelerator Driven System design with a smaller pin pitch-to-diameter ratio comparing to the reference EFIT-400 design, aiming at improving neutron source efficiency, was also performed by simulating performance for unprotected loss of flow, unprotected transient overpower, and protected loss-of-heat-sink transients, using neutronic parameters obatined from MCNP calculations. Thanks to the introduction of the austenitic 15/15Ti stainless steel with enhanced creep rupture resistance and acceptable irradiation swelling rate, the suggested ADS design loaded with nitride fuel and cooled by lead-bismuth eutectic could survive the full set of transients, preserving a margin of 130 K to cladding rupture during the most limiting transient.

The thesis concludes that efficient transmutation of americium in a medium sized sodium cooled fast reactor loaded with MOX fuel is possible but leads to a severe power penalty. Instead, preserving transmutation rates of minor actinides up to 42 kg/TWhth, the suggested ADS design with enhanced proton source efficiency appears like a better option for americium transmutation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Insitute of Technology , 2011. , 73 p.
Series
Trita-FYS, ISSN 0280-316X ; 2011:07
Keyword [en]
americium, transmutation, fast reactor
National Category
Subatomic Physics Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-31518ISBN: 978-91-7415-890-8OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-31518DiVA: diva2:404488
Presentation
2011-03-10, FA-31, Alba Nova, Stockholm, 14:30 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note
QC 20110318Available from: 2011-03-18 Created: 2011-03-17 Last updated: 2012-02-23Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Transmutation of americium in a medium size sodium cooled fast reactor design
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Transmutation of americium in a medium size sodium cooled fast reactor design
2010 (English)In: Annals of Nuclear Energy, ISSN 0306-4549, E-ISSN 1873-2100, Vol. 37, no 5, 629-638 p.Article, review/survey (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

We have performed transient analysis of a medium size sodium cooled reactor loaded with different fractions of americium in the fuel. Unprotected Loss of Flow (ULOF) and Unprotected Transient over Power (UTOP) accidents were simulated in a geometrical model of BN600, using safety parameters obtained with the SERPENT Monte Carlo code. For the reference case of MOX fuel, with 1 wt.% Am concentration at BOL and EOEC, the margin to melt following a design basis condition UTOP is about 100 K for a maximum linear rating of 37 kW/m. Introducing Am, the maximum fuel temperature increases by 50 K per percent Am in the fuel. In order to maintain a margin of 100 K to fuel failure, the linear rating has to be reduced by similar to 6% for each percent Am added to the fuel. Hence, an Am concentration of 2-3 wt.% in the fuel would lead to a power penalty of 6-13%, permitting a consumption rate of 1.7-3.4 kg Am/TWh(th). (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

National Category
Subatomic Physics Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-27895 (URN)10.1016/j.anucene.2009.12.014 (DOI)000277540000001 ()2-s2.0-77950299511 (ScopusID)
Note
QC 20110110Available from: 2011-01-10 Created: 2011-01-03 Last updated: 2012-02-01Bibliographically approved
2. Physics and safety studies of a compact ADS design loaded with nitride fuel
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Physics and safety studies of a compact ADS design loaded with nitride fuel
2011 (English)In: Annals of Nuclear Energy, ISSN 0306-4549, E-ISSN 1873-2100, Vol. 38, no 11, 2350-2355 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

We have performed transient analysis of a nitride fueled and heavy liquid metal cooled accelerator driven system, in which the pitch-to-diameter ratio of pin lattice was set at 1.26. Unprotected loss-of-flow, unprotected transient-over-power and protected loss-of-heat-sink transients were simulated in a geometrical model of the suggested ADS design, using safety parameters obtained with the MCNP/MCNPX code.

Keyword
ADS, nitride fuel, transient analysis, 15-15Ti
National Category
Subatomic Physics Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-31527 (URN)10.1016/j.anucene.2011.06.022 (DOI)000295759300005 ()2-s2.0-80051872847 (ScopusID)
Note
QC 20110318 QC 20111107Available from: 2011-03-18 Created: 2011-03-18 Last updated: 2012-02-01Bibliographically approved

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