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FP7

Development and characterization of the control assembly system for the large 2400 MWth Generation IV gas-cooled fast reactor

Funded under: FP7-EURATOM

Abstract

The present paper is related to the design and neutronic characterization of the principal control assembly system for the reference large (2400 MWth) Generation IV gas-cooled fast reactor (GFR), which makes use of ceramic-ceramic (CERCER) plate-type fuel-elements with (U-Pu) carbide fuel contained within a SiC inert matrix. For the neutronic calculations, the deterministic code system ERANOS-2.0 has been used, in association with a full core model including a European fast reactor (EFR)-type pattern for the control assemblies as a starting point. More specifically, the core contains a total of 33 control (control system device: CSD) and safety (diverse safety device: DSD) assemblies implemented in three banks. In the design of the new control assembly system, particular attention was given to the heat generation within the assemblies, so that both neutronic and thermal-hydraulic constraints could be appropriately accounted for. The thermal-hydraulic calculations have been performed with the code COPERNIC, significant coolant mass flow rates being found necessary to maintain acceptable cladding temperatures of the absorber pins.
Complementary to the design study, neutronic investigations have been performed to assess the impact of the control assemblies in the GFR core in greater detail (rod interactions, shift of the flux, peaking factors, etc.). Thus, considerable shadowing effects have been observed between the first bank and the safety bank, as also between individual assemblies within the first bank. Large anti-shadowing effects also occur, the most prominent being that between the two CSD banks, where the total assembly worth is almost doubled in comparison to the sum of the individual values. Additional investigations have been performed and, in this context, it has been found that computation of the first-order eigenvalue and the eigenvalue separation is a robust tool to anticipate control assembly interactions in a large fast-spectrum core.

Additional information

Authors: GIRARDIN G, Paul Scherrer Institut, Villigen (CH);CODDINGTON P, Paul Scherrer Institut, Villigen (CH);MIKITYUK K, Paul Scherrer Institut, Villigen (CH);CHAWLA R, Paul Scherrer Institut, Villigen (CH);RIMPAULT G, Département de Recherches sur la Fusion Contrôlée, Association Euratom-CEA sur la Fusion, CEA Cadarache, Saint-Paul-lez-Durance (FR);MORIN F, Département de Recherches sur la Fusion Contrôlée, Association Euratom-CEA sur la Fusion, CEA Cadarache, Saint-Paul-lez-Durance (FR);BOSQ JC, Département de Recherches sur la Fusion Contrôlée, Association Euratom-CEA sur la Fusion, CEA Cadarache, Saint-Paul-lez-Durance (FR)
Bibliographic Reference: An article published in: Annals of Nuclear Energy, Volume 35, Issue 12 (2008), Pages 2206-2218
Availability: This article can be accessed online by subscribers, and can be ordered online by non-subscribers, at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.anucene.2008.09.008
Record Number: 200910127 / Last updated on: 2009-01-23
Category: PUBLICATION
Original language: en
Available languages: en
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