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Neutronics and Transient Analysis of a Small Fast Reactor Cooled with Natural Circulation of Lead: ELECTRA: European Lead Cooled Training Reactor
KTH, School of Engineering Sciences (SCI), Physics, Reactor Physics.
2014 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In this thesis, neutronics and some relevant transient analyses of the European Lead-Cooled Training Reactor (ELECTRA) are analyzed. ELECTRA is a low-power lead-cooled fast reactor intended for training purpose. The design concept aims for the total nominal power of 0.5 MWth to be fully removed by natural circulation of pure lead, eliminating the need for pumps. A very small compact core with (Pu0.4Zr0.6)N fuel, which relies on neutron reflector to achieve criticality, results in unique reflector dominant neutronic characters. Moreover, a very hard neutron spectrum due to the choice of the fuel and the coolant leads to nearly zero Doppler feedback, relatively small effective delayed neutron fraction as well as short prompt neutron reproduction time. Nevertheless, dynamic stability and safety performance during unprotected transient scenarios are shown to be inherently ensured by the other reactivity feedbacks including the negative coolant temperature. Furthermore, the nature of the natural circulation provides favorable conditions during the studied accident cases. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2014. , 42 p.
Series
TRITA-FYS, ISSN 0280-316X ; 2014:29
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-146992ISBN: 978-91-7595-191-1 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-146992DiVA: diva2:727866
Public defence
2014-08-18, sal FA31, AlbaNova Universitetscentrum, Roslagstullsbacken 21, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

QC 20140625

Available from: 2014-06-25 Created: 2014-06-19 Last updated: 2014-06-25Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Electra: European Lead-Cooled Training Reactor
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Electra: European Lead-Cooled Training Reactor
2012 (English)In: Nuclear Technology, ISSN 0029-5450, E-ISSN 1943-7471, Vol. 177, no 3, 303-313 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The design of a low-power fast neutron reactor cooled by liquid lead (ELECTRA) is presented. Application of (Pu,Zr)N fuel permits the design of a core with very small volume and fuel column height, resulting in highly negative coolant, fuel, and structure temperature coefficients and very low channel pressure drop. Full design power of 0.5 MW(thermal) may be completely removed by natural circulation in the primary circuit, thus eliminating the need for pumps. Analysis of flow stability and performance under unprotected transients show that the suggested design is very safe, supporting its intended use for training and educational purposes.

Keyword
lead-cooled fast reactor, natural convection, nitride fuel
National Category
Physical Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-92052 (URN)000300969400002 ()2-s2.0-84859472318 (Scopus ID)
Note
QC 20120326Available from: 2012-03-26 Created: 2012-03-26 Last updated: 2017-12-07Bibliographically approved
2. Optimization of the reactivity control drum system of ELECTRA
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Optimization of the reactivity control drum system of ELECTRA
2012 (English)In: Nuclear Engineering and Design, ISSN 0029-5493, E-ISSN 1872-759X, Vol. 252, no 1, 209-214 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In this paper, an optimized control drum system for the European Lead Cooled Training Reactor (ELECTRA) is proposed. By changing the number of rotating drums from 6 to 12, we succeed in reducing the maximum rotational worth of a single drum from 4 $ to 1.64 $. As a consequence, the safety margin during reactivity insertions is significantly improved.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2012
Keyword
Optimized control, Reactivity control, Reactivity insertion, Rotating drums, Safety margin
National Category
Other Physics Topics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-104320 (URN)10.1016/j.nucengdes.2012.07.005 (DOI)000310040000024 ()2-s2.0-84866664379 (Scopus ID)
Note

QC 20121108. Correction in: Nuclear Engineering And Design, vol 255, Pages 376-376,

Doi: 10.1016/j.nucengdes.2012.11.001, WOS:000315839700039

ScopusID: 2-s2.0-84884902351

Available from: 2012-11-08 Created: 2012-10-31 Last updated: 2017-12-07Bibliographically approved
3. An assessment of prompt neutron reproduction time in a reflector dominated fast critical system: ELECTRA
Open this publication in new window or tab >>An assessment of prompt neutron reproduction time in a reflector dominated fast critical system: ELECTRA
2014 (English)In: Annals of Nuclear Energy, ISSN 0306-4549, E-ISSN 1873-2100, Vol. 71, 159-165 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In this paper, an accurate method to evaluate the prompt neutron reproduction time for a reflector dominated fast critical reactor, ELECTRA, is discussed. To adequately handle the problem, explicit time dependent Monte Carlo calculations with MCNP, applying repeated time cut-off technique, is used and compared against the σ ∼ 1/v time dependent absorber method, applying artificial cross section data in the Monte Carlo code SERPENT. The results show that when a reflector plays a major role in criticality for fast neutron reactor, the two methods predict different physical parameters (Λ = 69 ± 2 ns and Λ = 83 ± 1 ns for time cut-off and the 1/v method respectively). The reason is explained by applying Avery-Cohn’s two-region prompt neutron model. 

Keyword
Prompt neutron reproduction time, Reflector dominated critical system
National Category
Other Physics Topics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-146988 (URN)10.1016/j.anucene.2014.04.001 (DOI)000337985500018 ()2-s2.0-84899442089 (Scopus ID)
Note

QC 20140625

Available from: 2014-06-19 Created: 2014-06-19 Last updated: 2017-12-05Bibliographically approved
4. BELLA: a multi-point dynamics code for simulation of fast reactors
Open this publication in new window or tab >>BELLA: a multi-point dynamics code for simulation of fast reactors
(English)In: Annals of Nuclear Energy, ISSN 0306-4549, E-ISSN 1873-2100Article in journal (Refereed) Submitted
Abstract [en]

In this paper, the multi-point dynamics code BELLA and its benchmarking with respect to SAS4A/SASSYS- 1 is described for a small fast reactor cooled with natural convection of lead (ELECTRA). It is shown that BELLA is capable of reproducing the magnitude of mass-flow, reactivity, power and temperature excursions during design extension conditions with an accuracy better than 10%. Hence, the BELLA code can be used for safety-informed design and stability analyses of fast reactor systems, permitting to isolate essential phenomena and trends of significance for their safety assessment. 

Keyword
fast reactors, dynamics, lumped parameters
National Category
Other Physics Topics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-146990 (URN)
Note

QS 2014

Available from: 2014-06-19 Created: 2014-06-19 Last updated: 2017-12-05Bibliographically approved
5. Unprotected Loss of Heat Sink Analysis for the Design of ELECTRA
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Unprotected Loss of Heat Sink Analysis for the Design of ELECTRA
(English)In: Annals of Nuclear Energy, ISSN 0306-4549, E-ISSN 1873-2100Article in journal (Other academic) Submitted
Abstract [en]

In this paper, the transient behavior of a small fast reactor cooled by natural convection of lead (ELECTRA) is studied under unprotected loss of heat sink conditions, as a parametric function of the radiative heat loss via its outer vessel surface. The results show that when this heat loss is higher than the decay heat level, the negative reactivity feedback mechanisms of the system lead to re-criticality, bringing it into a new steady state. As a consequence, coolant freezing may be avoided during such accidents. 

Keyword
lead cooled fast reactor, natural circulation, unprotected loss of heat sink transient
National Category
Other Physics Topics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-146991 (URN)
Note

QS 2014

Available from: 2014-06-23 Created: 2014-06-19 Last updated: 2017-12-05Bibliographically approved

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