EPJ Web Conf.
Volume 247, 2021PHYSOR2020 – International Conference on Physics of Reactors: Transition to a Scalable Nuclear Future
|Number of page(s)||8|
|Section||Advanced Modelling and Simulation|
|Published online||22 February 2021|
ON THE EFFECT OF FINE-SCALE RADIAL VOID DISTRIBUTIONS ON ASSEMBLY CRITICALITY AND PIN POWER DISTRIBUTION
1 Department of Nuclear, Plasma and Radiological Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801
2 Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801
Published online: 22 February 2021
The assumption that void fraction, and by extension coolant density, is uniform in the radial direction is a common approximation used in lattice physics simulations. In this study, models without uniform radial void fraction are used and lattice criticality and pin powers are investigated in two ways. One way uses hypothetical models that reflect extreme radial void distributions; modifications such as uniform radial pin enrichment and the removal of gadolinium rods are included in these models as well. Experimentally-determined boiling water reactor radial void distributions are also replicated in neutronics models using Serpent 2. It is found in the hypothetical models that the presence of gadolinium rods has a large effect on the interaction between lattice criticality and radial void distribution. It was also found that considering experimental radial void fraction distributions had the largest effect on the pin power of the rods containing gadolinium. Furthermore, it is observed that considering realistic radial void distributions, in general, decreased lattice criticality. The reason can be attributed that to the passive negative-feedback design of light water reactors. These are useful findings because calculation of more accurate peaking factors can lead to efficient and yet safer reactor operation.
Key words: Boiling Water Reactor / Criticality / Radial Void Distribution / Serpent 2
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2021
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