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Research Papers: Nuclear Power

TRU-Fueled Very High Temperature Reactors for Applications Requiring an Extended Operation With Minimized Control and No Refueling

[+] Author and Article Information
Pavel V. Tsvetkov, Tom G. Lewis

Department of Nuclear Engineering, Texas A&M University, 129 Zachry Engineering Center, MS 3133 TAMU, College Station, TX 77843-3133

Ayodeji B. Alajo

Department of Nuclear Engineering, Texas A&M University, 129 Zachry Engineering Center, MS 3133 TAMU, College Station, TX 77843-3133tsvetkov@tamu.edu

J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power 131(5), 052907 (Jun 11, 2009) (4 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3098428 History: Received November 30, 2008; Revised December 07, 2008; Published June 11, 2009

This paper presents an analysis of transuranium nuclide (TRU)-fueled very high temperature reactor (VHTR) systems focusing on applications requiring an extended operation with minimized control and no refueling (single-batch mode). As an example of such applications, international deployment opportunities for grid-appropriate VHTR systems could be mentioned addressing demands for electricity, industrial heat, and co-generation in those regions where minimized servicing is desirable for various reasons. The study is performed for the hexagonal block core concept within the framework of the ongoing U.S. DOE Nuclear Energy Research Initiative project on utilization of higher actinides (TRUs and partitioned minor actinides (MAs)) as a fuel component for extended-life VHTRs. The up-to-date analysis has shown reasonable reactivity swings, core life limits with respect to fast fluences, and criticality.

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Copyright © 2009 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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References

Figures

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Figure 1

Symbiotic quasisustainable PWR-VHTR system

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Figure 2

3D whole-core exact-geometry VHTR model

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Figure 3

Fuel effects in VHTRs–spectral variations (fluxes in the innermost fuel ring of the three-ring VHTR)

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Figure 4

TRU-fueled VHTR lifetime as a function of C/HM

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Figure 5

Fast fluence levels in the longest-operating VHTRs

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Figure 6

Variations of TRU vectors due to PWR data

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Figure 7

Equilibrium neutron balance in the TRU-systems

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