EPJ Web Conf.
Volume 247, 2021PHYSOR2020 – International Conference on Physics of Reactors: Transition to a Scalable Nuclear Future
|Number of page(s)||8|
|Section||Fuel Performance and Management|
|Published online||22 February 2021|
NEXUS FRAMEWORK FOR WHOLE-CORE FUEL PERFORMANCE: CURRENT APPLICATIONS AND FUTURE TRENDS
National Nuclear Laboratory Chadwick House, Warrington, UK
Published online: 22 February 2021
Current industry practice in fuel licensing often relies on thermo-mechanical modeling of a fuel rod with an artificially constructed bounding power history. The benefit of this approach is that it is computationally efficient; however, the drawbacks are that 1) such an approach is not always conservative, for instance when modelling phenomena related to late onset pellet-clad gap closure; and 2) it can poorly estimate available safety margins for fuel operating at high local power densities and/or to high burnup. For these reasons NNL developed an in-house whole-core fuel performance framework – NEXUS – to enable modelling of all fuel rods in the core using the ENIGMA fuel performance code and computed power histories from core simulation packages (currently limited to PARCS or SIMULATE). One of the main objectives was to create a tool that was both computationally efficient and user friendly. The former was achieved by making use of parallelisable architecture, while the latter was achieved by minimising necessary user input and providing tools for easy interrogation of the fuel performance output.
NEXUS has been applied to several LWR operational scenarios, which we summarise in this paper, including steady-state operation of an ABWR, and a rod ejection accident in a small modular soluble boron free PWR and a GWe-class PWR. We also summarise current development activities related to integrating NNL’s in-house fuel performance Monte Carlo uncertainty analysis software CASINO into the NEXUS framework.
Key words: Fuel Performance / ENIGMA / ABWR / Soluble Boron Free / REA
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2021
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