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Research Papers: Nuclear Power

Results of Tests to Demonstrate a 6-in.-Diameter Coater for Production of TRISO-Coated Particles for Advanced Gas Reactor Experiments

[+] Author and Article Information
Charles M. Barnes

 Idaho National Laboratory, P.O. Box 1625, Idaho Falls, ID 83415-3855charles.barnes@inl.gov

Douglas W. Marshall

 Idaho National Laboratory, P.O. Box 1625, Idaho Falls, ID 83415-3855douglas.marshall@inl.gov

Joe T. Keeley

 B&W Nuclear Operations Group, P.O. Box 785, Lynchburg, VA 24504jtkeely@babcock.com

John D. Hunn

 Oak Ridge National Laboratory, P.O. Box 2008, Oak Ridge, TN 37831-6093hunnjd@ornl.gov

Coating rate varies with time during any coating. Coating rates plotted in Fig. 3 and later figures have not been adjusted for small variations in layer thicknesses observed in the difference tests.

J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power 131(5), 052905 (Jun 10, 2009) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3098424 History: Received November 14, 2008; Revised November 25, 2008; Published June 10, 2009

The next generation nuclear plant (NGNP)/advanced gas reactor (AGR) fuel development and qualification program includes a series of irradiation experiments in Idaho National Laboratory’s advanced test reactor. Tristructural isotropic (TRISO)-coated particles for the first AGR experiment, AGR-1, were produced at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in a 2-in.(5-cm)-diameter coater. A requirement of the NGNP/AGR program is to produce coated particles for later experiments in coaters more representative of industrial scale. Toward this end, tests have been performed by Babcock and Wilcox (Lynchburg, VA) in a 6-in.(15-cm)-diameter coater. These tests have led to successful fabrication of particles for the second AGR experiment, AGR-2. While a thorough study of how coating parameters affect particle properties was not the goal of these tests, the test data obtained provide insight into process parameter/coated particle property relationships. Most relationships for the 6-in.-diameter coater followed trends found with the ORNL 2-in. coater, in spite of differences in coater design and bed hydrodynamics. For example, the key coating parameters affecting pyrocarbon anisotropy were coater temperature, coating gas fraction, total gas flow rate, and kernel charge size. Anisotropy of the outer pyrolytic carbon layer also strongly correlates with coater differential pressure. In an effort to reduce the total particle fabrication run time, silicon carbide (SiC) was deposited with methyltrichlorosilane (MTS) concentrations up to 3mol%. Using only hydrogen as the fluidizing gas, the high concentration MTS tests resulted in particles with lower than desired SiC densities. However, when hydrogen was partially replaced with argon, high SiC densities were achieved with the high MTS gas fraction.

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Copyright © 2009 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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References

Figures

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Figure 1

Comparison of pyrocarbon density versus temperature for 2-in.- and 6-in.-diameter coaters

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Figure 2

Pyrocarbon densities versus bed and control temperatures for 6-in. coater

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Figure 3

Pyrocarbon anisotropy versus coating parameters

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Figure 4

Pyrocarbon anisotropy versus coating temperatures

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Figure 5

OPyC diattenuation versus coater differential pressure

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Figure 6

OPyC diattenuation versus coater inlet pressure

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Figure 7

Comparison of IPyC surface connected porosities for the two coaters

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Figure 8

Pyrocarbon surface connected porosity versus average coating rate

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Figure 9

SiC density versus coating parameters

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Figure 10

(a) SiC microstructure of particle produced in 2-in. coater with H2 only, 1.5% MTS, and 1500°C bed temperature. (b) SiC microstructure of particle produced in 2-in. coater with 50% Ar, 2% MTS, and 1425°C bed temperature. (c) SiC microstructure of particle produced in 6-in. coater using H2 only, 1.5% MTS, and 1600°C coater control temperature (∼1470°C bed temperature). (d) SiC microstructure of particle produced in 6-in. coater using 30% Ar, 3% MTS, and 1550°C coater control temperature (∼1425°C bed temperature).

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Figure 11

Example of SiC inclusion in particle from B&W coating run 93019

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Figure 12

Correlation of SiC defects with coating thickness

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Figure 13

Example of IPyC-Sic interface showing interlacing of the two layers

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