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Sample records for nuclear fission reactors

  1. Nuclear Power from Fission Reactors. An Introduction.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Department of Energy, Washington, DC. Technical Information Center.

    The purpose of this booklet is to provide a basic understanding of nuclear fission energy and different fission reaction concepts. Topics discussed are: energy use and production, current uses of fuels, oil and gas consumption, alternative energy sources, fossil fuel plants, nuclear plants, boiling water and pressurized water reactors, the light…

  2. Optimally moderated nuclear fission reactor and fuel source therefor

    DOEpatents

    Ougouag, Abderrafi M.; Terry, William K.; Gougar, Hans D.

    2008-07-22

    An improved nuclear fission reactor of the continuous fueling type involves determining an asymptotic equilibrium state for the nuclear fission reactor and providing the reactor with a moderator-to-fuel ratio that is optimally moderated for the asymptotic equilibrium state of the nuclear fission reactor; the fuel-to-moderator ratio allowing the nuclear fission reactor to be substantially continuously operated in an optimally moderated state.

  3. The behavior of fission products during nuclear rocket reactor tests

    SciTech Connect

    Bokor, P.C.; Kirk, W.L.; Bohl, R.J.

    1991-01-01

    The experience base regarding fission product behavior developed during the Rover program, the nuclear rocket development program of 1955--1972, will be useful in planning a renewed nuclear rocket program. During the Rover program, 20 reactors were tested at the Nuclear Rocket Development Station in Nevada. Nineteen of these discharged effluent directly into the atmosphere; the last reactor tested, a non-flight-prototypic, fuel-element-testing reactor called the Nuclear Furnace (NF-1) was connected to an effluent cleanup system that removed fission products before the hydrogen coolant (propellant) was discharged to the atmosphere. In general, we are able to increase both test duration and fuel temperature during the test series. Therefore fission product data from the later part of the program are more interesting and more applicable to future reactors. We have collected fission product retention (and release) data reported in both formal and informal publications for six of the later reactor tests; five of these were Los Alamos reactors that were firsts of a kind in configuration or operating conditions. We have also, with the cooperation of Westinghouse, included fission product data from the NRX-A6 reactor, the final member of series of developmental reactors with the same basic geometry, but with significant design and fabrication improvements as the series continued. Table 1 lists the six selected reactors and the test parameters for each.

  4. Fission control system for nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Conley, G.H.; Estes, G.P.

    Control system for nuclear reactor comprises a first set of reactivity modifying rods fixed in a reactor core with their upper ends stepped in height across the core, and a second set of reactivity modifying rods movable vertically within the reactor core and having their lower ends stepped to correspond with the stepped arrangement of the first set of rods, pairs of the rods of the first and second sets being in coaxial alignment.

  5. Chemistry of fission product iodine under nuclear reactor accident conditions

    SciTech Connect

    Malinauskas, A.P.; Bell, J.T.

    1986-01-01

    The radioisotopes of iodine are generally acknowledged to be the species whose release into the biosphere as a result of a nuclear reactor accident is of the greatest concern. In the course of its release, the fission product is subjected to differing chemical environments; these can alter the physicochemical form of the fission product and thus modify the manner and extent to which release occurs. Both the chemical environments which are characteristic of reactor accidents and their effect in determining physical and chemical form of fission product iodine have been studied extensively, and are reviewed in this report. 76 refs.

  6. Nuclear data requirements for fission reactor neutronics calculations.

    SciTech Connect

    Finck, P.

    1998-06-29

    The paper discusses current European nuclear data measurement and evaluation requirements for fission reactor technology applications and problems involved in meeting the requirements. Reference is made to the NEA High Priority Nuclear Data Request List and to the production of the new JEFF-3 library of evaluated nuclear data. There are requirements for both differential (or basic) nuclear data measurements and for different types of integral measurement critical facility measurements and isotopic sample irradiation measurements. Cross-section adjustment procedures are being used to take into account the simpler types of integral measurement, and to define accuracy needs for evaluated nuclear data.

  7. Two-billion-year-old nuclear reactors: Nature goes fission

    SciTech Connect

    Curtis, D.B.

    1992-12-31

    Once it was thought that the isotopic composition of natural uranium was invariant. It was thus surprising in 1972 when French scientists observed small but significant deficiencies of the minor isotope {sup 235}U in uranium ore. Subsequent investigations traced the isotopically anomalous material to the Oklo mine in the African Republic of Gabon. In the mine, cubic-dekametre-sized pods of rock were found to contain extraordinary concentrations of uranium, as much as 65%, with as little as half the normal isotopic abundance of {sup 235}U. In these rocks, neodymium was found to be deficient in the premordial isotope {sup 142}Nd and enriched in the fission-produced isotopes {sup 143-150}Nd. The presence of fission products was unambiguous evidence that the {sup 235}U deficiencies were the result of sustained nuclear fission. Within the heart of the natural reactors, the fission densities were on the order of 10{sup 20} fissions/cm{sup 3}, producing hundreds of megajoules of energy and tens of microwatts of power per gram of rock. Nature had forestalled man`s great discovery of energy production by nuclear fission.

  8. FUEL ELEMENTS FOR THERMAL-FISSION NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Flint, O.

    1961-01-10

    Fuel elements for thermal-fission nuclear reactors are described. The fuel element is comprised of a core of alumina, a film of a metal of the class consisting of copper, silver, and nickel on the outer face of the core, and a coating of an oxide of a metal isotope of the class consisting of Un/sup 235/, U/ sup 233/, and Pu/sup 239/ on the metal f ilm.

  9. Nuclear Design of the HOMER-15 Mars Surface Fission Reactor

    SciTech Connect

    Poston, David I.

    2002-07-01

    The next generation of robotic missions to Mars will most likely require robust power sources in the range of 3 to 20 kWe. Fission systems are well suited to provide safe, reliable, and economic power within this range. The goal of this study is to design a compact, low-mass fission system that meets Mars surface power requirements, while maintaining a high level of safety and reliability at a relatively low cost. The Heat pipe Power System (HPS) is one possible approach for producing near-term, low-cost, space fission power. The goal of the HPS project is to devise an attractive space fission system that can be developed quickly and affordably. The primary ways of doing this are by using existing technology and by designing the system for inexpensive testing. If the system can be designed to allow highly prototypic testing with electrical heating, then an exhaustive test program can be carried out quickly and inexpensively, and thorough testing of the actual flight unit can be performed - which is a major benefit to reliability. Over the past 4 years, three small HPS proof-of-concept technology demonstrations have been conducted, and each has been highly successful. The Heat pipe-Operated Mars Exploration Reactor (HOMER) is a derivative of the HPS designed especially for producing power on the surface of Mars. The HOMER-15 is a 15-kWt reactor that couples with a 3-kWe Stirling engine power system. The reactor contains stainless-steel (SS)-clad uranium nitride (UN) fuel pins that are structurally and thermally bonded to SS/sodium heat pipes. Fission energy is conducted from the fuel pins to the heat pipes, which then carry the heat to the Stirling engine. This paper describes conceptual design and nuclear performance the HOMER-15 reactor. (author)

  10. Monitoring system for a liquid-cooled nuclear fission reactor

    DOEpatents

    DeVolpi, Alexander

    1987-01-01

    A monitoring system for detecting changes in the liquid levels in various regions of a water-cooled nuclear power reactor, viz., in the downcomer, in the core, in the inlet and outlet plenums, at the head, and elsewhere; and also for detecting changes in the density of the liquid in these regions. A plurality of gamma radiation detectors are used, arranged vertically along the outside of the reactor vessel, and collimator means for each detector limits the gamma-radiation it receives as emitting from only isolated regions of the vessel. Excess neutrons produced by the fission reaction will be captured by the water coolant, by the steel reactor walls, or by the fuel or control structures in the vessel. Neutron capture by steel generates gamma radiation having an energy level of the order of 5-12 MeV, whereas neutron capture by water provides an energy level of approximately 2.2 MeV, and neutron capture by the fission fuel or its cladding provides an energy level of 1 MeV or less. The intensity of neutron capture thus changes significantly at any water-metal interface. Comparative analysis of adjacent gamma detectors senses changes from the normal condition with liquid coolant present to advise of changes in the presence and/or density of the coolant at these specific regions. The gamma detectors can also sense fission-product gas accumulation at the reactor head to advise of a failure of fuel-pin cladding.

  11. A fission fragment reactor concept for nuclear space propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suo-Anttila, A. J.; Parma, E. J.; Wright, S. A.; Vernon, M. E.; Pickard, P. S.

    1991-10-01

    Sandia National Laboratory (SNL) has proposed a new nuclear thermal propulsion concept that uses fission fragments to directly heat the propellant up to 1000 K or higher above the material temperatures. The concept offers significant advantages over traditional solid core nuclear rocket concepts because of higher propellant exit temperatures while at the same time providing for more reliable operation due to lower structure temperatures and lower power densities. The concept can be operated in either steady state or pulsed modes. The engine consists of tubular modules, each with its own pressure boundary and rocket nozzle. The steady state mode requires a large engine with a reflector for criticality, provides high thrust and high ISP. The pulse mode utilizes a driver reactor for criticality and can be considerably smaller with lower but scaleable thrust. The pulse mode does require an external heat radiator for reactor cooling, which limits its duty cycle.

  12. Thermohydraulic and nuclear modeling of natural fission reactors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Viggato, Jason Charles

    Experimental verification of proposed nuclear waste storage schemes in geologic repositories is not possible, however, a natural analog exists in the form of ancient natural reactors that existed in uranium-rich ores. Two billion years ago, the enrichment of natural uranium was high enough to allow a sustained chain reaction in the presence of water as a moderator. Several natural reactors occurred in Gabon, Africa and were discovered in the early 1970's. These reactors operated at low power levels for hundreds of thousands of years. Heated water generated from the reactors also leached uranium from the surrounding rock strata and deposited it in the reactor cores. This increased the concentration of uranium in the core over time and served to "refuel" the reactor. This has strong implications in the design of modern geologic repositories for spent nuclear fuel. The possibility of accidental fission events in man-made repositories exists and the geologic evidence from Oklo suggests how those events may progress and enhance local concentrations of uranium. Based on a review of the literature, a comprehensive code was developed to model the thermohydraulic behavior and criticality conditions that may have existed in the Oklo reactor core. A two-dimensional numerical model that incorporates modeling of fluid flow, temperatures, and nuclear fission and subsequent heat generation was developed for the Oklo natural reactors. The operating temperatures ranged from about 456 K to about 721 K. Critical reactions were observed for a wide range of concentrations and porosity values (9 to 30 percent UO2 and 10 to 20 percent porosity). Periodic operation occurred in the computer model prediction with UO2 concentrations of 30 percent in the core and 5 percent in the surrounding material. For saturated conditions and 30 percent porosity, the model predicted temperature transients with a period of about 5 hours. Kuroda predicted 3 to 4 hour durations for temperature transients

  13. Fission product scrubbing system for a nuclear reactor

    SciTech Connect

    Leach, D.S.

    1986-09-09

    A fission product scrubbing system is described for a nuclear reactor including a containment building defining a containment space for accommodating reactor components, comprising (a) means defining a water tank in the containment building; (b) a dividing wall extending into the water tank for separating the water tank into a first and a second compartment; (c) means defining a collection plenum normally hermetically sealed from the containment space and the environment externally of the containment building; (d) means defining a communication passage in the dividing wall underneath the water level in the first and second compartments for maintaining communication between the water stored in the first and second compartments; (e) a standpipe extending from the containment space into the second compartment; (f) a vent pipe extending from the collection plenum into the environment externally of the containment building; and (g) a rupture disc mounted in the vent pipe for normally blocking communication between the collection plenum and the environment.

  14. A fission fragment reactor concept for nuclear thermal propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suo-Anttila, Ahti J.; Parma, Edward J.; Pickard, Paul S.; Wright, Steven A.; Vernon, Milton E.

    1992-01-01

    The Space Exploration Initiative requires the development of nuclear thermal and nuclear electric technologies for space propulsion for future Luna and Mars missions. Sandia National Laboratories has proposed a new nuclear thermal propulsion concept that uses fission fragments to directly heat the propellant up to 1000 K or higher above the material temperatures. The concept offers significant advantages over traditional solid-core nuclear rocket concepts because of higher propellent exit temperatures, while at the same time providing for more reliable operation due to lower structure temperatures and lower power densities. The reactor can be operated in either a steady-state or pulsed mode. The steady-state mode provides a high thrust and relatively high specific impulse, as compared to other nuclear thermal concepts. The pulsed mode requires an auxillary radiator for cooling, but has the possibility of achieving very high specific impulses and thrust scaleable to the radiator size. The propellant temperatures are limited only by thermal radiation and transient heat conduction back to the substrate walls.

  15. A new concept of nuclear fission reactors safety

    SciTech Connect

    Petrov, Y.V.

    1993-12-31

    To develop safe nuclear energy production acceptable to the society it is proposed to use in the future strongly subcritical reactors (k=0.96-0.97) driven by proton or deuteron accelerators. The accelerator with the current of 40mA and particle energy {approximately}0.8 GeV/nucleon will provide 2 GW (th.) reactor power in fast reactor with metallic U-Pu fuel. The design, control and parameters of such a system are discussed.

  16. Curved Waveguide Based Nuclear Fission for Small, Lightweight Reactors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Coker, Robert; Putnam, Gabriel

    2012-01-01

    The focus of the presented work is on the creation of a system of grazing incidence, supermirror waveguides for the capture and reuse of fission sourced neutrons. Within research reactors, neutron guides are a well known tool for directing neutrons from the confined and hazardous central core to a more accessible testing or measurement location. Typical neutron guides have rectangular, hollow cross sections, which are crafted as thin, mirrored waveguides plated with metal (commonly nickel). Under glancing angles with incoming neutrons, these waveguides can achieve nearly lossless transport of neutrons to distant instruments. Furthermore, recent developments have created supermirror surfaces which can accommodate neutron grazing angles up to four times as steep as nickel. A completed system will form an enclosing ring or spherical resonator system to a coupled neutron source for the purpose of capturing and reusing free neutrons to sustain and/or accelerate fission. While grazing incidence mirrors are a known method of directing and safely using neutrons, no method has been disclosed for capture and reuse of neutrons or sustainment of fission using a circular waveguide structure. The presented work is in the process of fabricating a functional, highly curved, neutron supermirror using known methods of Ni-Ti layering capable of achieving incident reflection angles up to four times steeper than nickel alone. Parallel work is analytically investigating future geometries, mirror compositions, and sources for enabling sustained fission with applicability to the propulsion and energy goals of NASA and other agencies. Should research into this concept prove feasible, it would lead to development of a high energy density, low mass power source potentially capable of sustaining fission with a fraction of the standard critical mass for a given material and a broadening of feasible materials due to reduced rates of release, absorption, and non-fission for neutrons. This

  17. Assessment of fission product yields data needs in nuclear reactor applications

    SciTech Connect

    Kern, K.; Becker, M.; Broeders, C.

    2012-07-01

    Studies on the build-up of fission products in fast reactors have been performed, with particular emphasis on the effects related to the physics of the nuclear fission process. Fission product yields, which are required for burn-up calculations, depend on the proton and neutron number of the target nucleus as well as on the incident neutron energy. Evaluated nuclear data on fission product yields are available for all relevant target nuclides in reactor applications. However, the description of their energy dependence in evaluated data is still rather rudimentary, which is due to the lack of experimental fast fission data and reliable physical models. Additionally, physics studies of evaluated JEFF-3.1.1 fission yields data have shown potential improvements, especially for various fast fission data sets of this evaluation. In recent years, important progress in the understanding of the fission process has been made, and advanced model codes are currently being developed. This paper deals with the semi-empirical approach to the description of the fission process, which is used in the GEF code being developed by K.-H. Schmidt and B. Jurado on behalf of the OECD Nuclear Energy Agency, and with results from the corresponding author's diploma thesis. An extended version of the GEF code, supporting the calculation of spectrum weighted fission product yields, has been developed. It has been applied to the calculation of fission product yields in the fission rate spectra of a MOX fuelled sodium-cooled fast reactor. Important results are compared to JEFF-3.1.1 data and discussed in this paper. (authors)

  18. The rate of decay of fresh fission products from a nuclear reactor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dolan, David J.

    Determining the rate of decay of fresh fission products from a nuclear reactor is complex because of the number of isotopes involved, different types of decay, half-lives of the isotopes, and some isotopes decay into other radioactive isotopes. Traditionally, a simplified rule of 7s and 10s is used to determine the dose rate from nuclear weapons and can be to estimate the dose rate from fresh fission products of a nuclear reactor. An experiment was designed to determine the dose rate with respect to time from fresh fission products of a nuclear reactor. The experiment exposed 0.5 grams of unenriched Uranium to a fast and thermal neutron flux from a TRIGA Research Reactor (Lakewood, CO) for ten minutes. The dose rate from the fission products was measured by four Mirion DMC 2000XB electronic personal dosimeters over a period of six days. The resulting dose rate following a rule of 10s: the dose rate of fresh fission products from a nuclear reactor decreases by a factor of 10 for every 10 units of time.

  19. Deep-Earth reactor: Nuclear fission, helium, and the geomagnetic field

    PubMed Central

    Hollenbach, D. F.; Herndon, J. M.

    2001-01-01

    Geomagnetic field reversals and changes in intensity are understandable from an energy standpoint as natural consequences of intermittent and/or variable nuclear fission chain reactions deep within the Earth. Moreover, deep-Earth production of helium, having 3He/4He ratios within the range observed from deep-mantle sources, is demonstrated to be a consequence of nuclear fission. Numerical simulations of a planetary-scale geo-reactor were made by using the SCALE sequence of codes. The results clearly demonstrate that such a geo-reactor (i) would function as a fast-neutron fuel breeder reactor; (ii) could, under appropriate conditions, operate over the entire period of geologic time; and (iii) would function in such a manner as to yield variable and/or intermittent output power. PMID:11562483

  20. Venting of fission products and shielding in thermionic nuclear reactor systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Salmi, E. W.

    1972-01-01

    Most thermionic reactors are designed to allow the fission gases to escape out of the emitter. A scheme to allow the fission gases to escape is proposed. Because of the low activity of the fission products, this method should pose no radiation hazards.

  1. Precise Nuclear Data Measurements Possible with the NIFFTE fissionTPC for Advanced Reactor Designs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Towell, Rusty; Niffte Collaboration

    2015-10-01

    The Neutron Induced Fission Fragment Tracking Experiment (NIFFTE) Collaboration has applied the proven technology of Time Projection Chambers (TPC) to the task of precisely measuring fission cross sections. With the NIFFTE fission TPC, precise measurements have been made during the last year at the Los Alamos Neutron Science Center from both U-235 and Pu-239 targets. The exquisite tracking capabilities of this device allow the full reconstruction of charged particles produced by neutron beam induced fissions from a thin central target. The wealth of information gained from this approach will allow systematics to be controlled at the level of 1%. The fissionTPC performance will be presented. These results are critical to the development of advanced uranium-fueled reactors. However, there are clear advantages to developing thorium-fueled reactors such as Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactors over uranium-fueled reactors. These advantages include improved reactor safety, minimizing radioactive waste, improved reactor efficiency, and enhanced proliferation resistance. The potential for using the fissionTPC to measure needed cross sections important to the development of thorium-fueled reactors will also be discussed.

  2. Italian hybrid and fission reactors scenario analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Ciotti, M.; Manzano, J.; Sepielli, M.

    2012-06-19

    Italy is a country where a long tradition of studies both in the fission and fusion field is consolidated; nevertheless a strong public opinion concerned with the destination of the Spent Nuclear Fuel hinders the development of nuclear power. The possibility to a severe reduction of the NSF mass generated from a fleet of nuclear reactors employing an hypothetical fusionfission hybrid reactor has been investigated in the Italian framework. The possibility to produce nuclear fuel for the fission nuclear reactors with the hybrid reactor was analyzed too.

  3. Italian hybrid and fission reactors scenario analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ciotti, M.; Manzano, J.; Sepielli, M.

    2012-06-01

    Italy is a country where a long tradition of studies both in the fission and fusion field is consolidated; nevertheless a strong public opinion concerned with the destination of the Spent Nuclear Fuel hinders the development of nuclear power. The possibility to a severe reduction of the NSF mass generated from a fleet of nuclear reactors employing an hypothetical fusionfission hybrid reactor has been investigated in the Italian framework. The possibility to produce nuclear fuel for the fission nuclear reactors with the hybrid reactor was analyzed too.

  4. Nuclear Fission Research at IRMM

    SciTech Connect

    Hambsch, Franz-Josef

    2005-05-24

    The Institute for Reference Materials and Measurements (IRMM) will celebrate its 45th anniversary in 2005. With its 150-MeV Geel Electron Linear Accelerator (GELINA) and 7-MV Van de Graaff accelerator as multi-purpose neutron sources, it served the nuclear physics community for this period.The research in the field of nuclear fission was focused in recent years on both the measurement and calculation of fission cross sections, and the measurement of fission fragment properties.Fission cross sections were determined for 233Pa and 234U; the fission process was studied in the resolved resonance region of 239Pu(n,f) and for 251Cf(nth,f). These measurements derive their interest from accelerator driven systems, the thorium fuel cycle, high temperature reactors, safety issues of current reactors, and basic physics. The measurements are supported by several modeling efforts that aim at improving model codes and nuclear data evaluation.

  5. NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Anderson, C.R.

    1962-07-24

    A fluidized bed nuclear reactor and a method of operating such a reactor are described. In the design means are provided for flowing a liquid moderator upwardly through the center of a bed of pellets of a nentron-fissionable material at such a rate as to obtain particulate fluidization while constraining the lower pontion of the bed into a conical shape. A smooth circulation of particles rising in the center and falling at the outside of the bed is thereby established. (AEC)

  6. Fifty years with nuclear fission

    SciTech Connect

    Behrens, J.W.; Carlson, A.D. )

    1989-01-01

    The news of the discovery of nuclear fission, by Otto Hahn and Fritz Strassmann in Germany, was brought to the United States by Niels Bohr in January 1939. Since its discovery, the United States, and the world for that matter, has never been the same. It therefore seemed appropriate to acknowledge the fifieth anniversary of its discovery by holding a topical meeting entitled, Fifty Years with Nuclear Fission,'' in the United States during the year 1989. The objective of the meeting was to bring together pioneers of the nuclear industry and other scientists and engineers to report on reminiscences of the past and on the more recent development in fission science and technology. The conference highlighted the early pioneers of the nuclear industry by dedicated a full day (April 26), consisting of two plenary sessions, at the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in Washington, DC. More recent developments in fission science and technology in addition to historical reflections were topics for two fully days of sessions (April 27 and 28) at the main site of the NIST in Gaithersburg, Maryland. The wide range of topics covered in this Volume 1 by this topical meeting included plenary invited, and contributed sessions entitled: Preclude to the First Chain Reaction -- 1932 to 1942; Early Fission Research -- Nuclear Structure and Spontaneous Fission; 50 Years of Fission, Science, and Technology; Nuclear Reactors, Secure Energy for the Future; Reactors 1; Fission Science 1; Safeguards and Space Applications; Fission Data; Nuclear Fission -- Its Various Aspects; Theory and Experiments in Support of Theory; Reactors and Safeguards; and General Research, Instrumentation, and By-Product. The individual papers have been cataloged separately.

  7. Technical Application of Nuclear Fission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Denschlag, J. O.

    The chapter is devoted to the practical application of the fission process, mainly in nuclear reactors. After a historical discussion covering the natural reactors at Oklo and the first attempts to build artificial reactors, the fundamental principles of chain reactions are discussed. In this context chain reactions with fast and thermal neutrons are covered as well as the process of neutron moderation. Criticality concepts (fission factor η, criticality factor k) are discussed as well as reactor kinetics and the role of delayed neutrons. Examples of specific nuclear reactor types are presented briefly: research reactors (TRIGA and ILL High Flux Reactor), and some reactor types used to drive nuclear power stations (pressurized water reactor [PWR], boiling water reactor [BWR], Reaktor Bolshoi Moshchnosti Kanalny [RBMK], fast breeder reactor [FBR]). The new concept of the accelerator-driven systems (ADS) is presented. The principle of fission weapons is outlined. Finally, the nuclear fuel cycle is briefly covered from mining, chemical isolation of the fuel and preparation of the fuel elements to reprocessing the spent fuel and conditioning for deposit in a final repository.

  8. Comparative evaluation of solar, fission, fusion, and fossil energy resources. Part 2: Power from nuclear fission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Clement, J. D.

    1973-01-01

    Different types of nuclear fission reactors and fissionable materials are compared. Special emphasis is placed upon the environmental impact of such reactors. Graphs and charts comparing reactor facilities in the U. S. are presented.

  9. A long term radiological risk model for plutonium-fueled and fission reactor space nuclear system

    SciTech Connect

    Bartram, B.W.; Dougherty, D.K.

    1987-01-01

    This report describes the optimization of the RISK III mathematical model, which provides risk assessment for the use of a plutonium-fueled, fission reactor in space systems. The report discusses possible scenarios leading to radiation releases on the ground; distinctions are made for an intact reactor and a dispersed reactor. Also included are projected dose equivalents for various accident situations. 54 refs., 31 figs., 11 tabs. (TEM)

  10. Analysis and numerical optimization of gas turbine space power systems with nuclear fission reactor heat sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Juhasz, Albert J.

    2005-07-01

    A new three objective optimization technique is developed and applied to find the operating conditions for fission reactor heated Closed Cycle Gas Turbine (CCGT) space power systems at which maximum efficiency, minimum radiator area, and minimum total system mass is achieved. Such CCGT space power systems incorporate a nuclear reactor heat source with its radiation shield; the rotating turbo-alternator, consisting of the compressor, turbine and the electric generator (three phase AC alternator); and the heat rejection subsystem, principally the space radiator, which enables the hot gas working fluid, emanating from either the turbine or a regenerative heat exchanger, to be cooled to compressor inlet conditions. Numerical mass models for all major subsystems and components developed during the course of this work are included in this report. The power systems modeled are applicable to future interplanetary missions within the Solar System and planetary surface power plants at mission destinations, such as our Moon, Mars, the Galilean moons (Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto), or Saturn's moon Titan. The detailed governing equations for the thermodynamic processes of the Brayton cycle have been derived and successfully programmed along with the heat transfer processes associated with cycle heat exchangers and the space radiator. System performance and mass results have been validated against a commercially available non-linear optimization code and also against data from existing ground based power plants.

  11. Fifty years with nuclear fission

    SciTech Connect

    Behrens, J.W.; Carlson, A.D. )

    1989-01-01

    The news of the discovery of nucler fission, by Otto Hahn and Fritz Strassmann in Germany, was brought to the United States by Niels Bohr in January 1939. Since its discovery, the United States, and the world for that matter, has never been the same. It therefore seemed appropriate to acknowledge the fiftieth anniversary of its discovery by holding a topical meeting entitled, Fifty years with nuclear fission,'' in the United States during the year 1989. The objective of the meeting was to bring together pioneers of the nuclear industry and other scientists and engineers to report on reminiscences of the past and on the more recent developments in fission science and technology. The conference highlighted the early pioneers of the nuclear industry by dedicating a full day (April 26), consisting of two plenary sessions, at the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in Washington, DC. More recent developments in fission science and technology in addition to historical reflections were topics for two full days of sessions (April 27 and 28) at the main sites of the NIST in Gaithersburg, Maryland. The wide range of topics covered by Volume 2 of this topical meeting included plenary invited, and contributed sessions entitled, Nuclear fission -- a prospective; reactors II; fission science II; medical and industrial applications by by-products; reactors and safeguards; general research, instrumentation, and by-products; and fission data, astrophysics, and space applications. The individual papers have been cataloged separately.

  12. Strengthening the fission reactor nuclear science and engineering program at UCLA. Final technical report

    SciTech Connect

    Okrent, D.

    1997-06-23

    This is the final report on DOE Award No. DE-FG03-92ER75838 A000, a three year matching grant program with Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG and E) to support strengthening of the fission reactor nuclear science and engineering program at UCLA. The program began on September 30, 1992. The program has enabled UCLA to use its strong existing background to train students in technological problems which simultaneously are of interest to the industry and of specific interest to PG and E. The program included undergraduate scholarships, graduate traineeships and distinguished lecturers. Four topics were selected for research the first year, with the benefit of active collaboration with personnel from PG and E. These topics remained the same during the second year of this program. During the third year, two topics ended with the departure o the students involved (reflux cooling in a PWR during a shutdown and erosion/corrosion of carbon steel piping). Two new topics (long-term risk and fuel relocation within the reactor vessel) were added; hence, the topics during the third year award were the following: reflux condensation and the effect of non-condensable gases; erosion/corrosion of carbon steel piping; use of artificial intelligence in severe accident diagnosis for PWRs (diagnosis of plant status during a PWR station blackout scenario); the influence on risk of organization and management quality; considerations of long term risk from the disposal of hazardous wastes; and a probabilistic treatment of fuel motion and fuel relocation within the reactor vessel during a severe core damage accident.

  13. NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Christy, R.F.

    1958-07-15

    A nuclear reactor of the homogeneous liquid fuel type is described wherein the fissionable isotope is suspended or dissolved in a liquid moderator such as water. The reactor core is comprised essentially of a spherical vessel for containing the reactive composition surrounded by a reflector, preferably of beryllium oxide. The reactive composition may be an ordinary water solution of a soluble salt of uranium, the quantity of fissionable isotope in solution being sufficient to provide a critical mass in the vessel. The liquid fuel is stored in a tank of non-crtttcal geometry below the reactor vessel and outside of the reflector and is passed from the tank to the vessel through a pipe connecting the two by air pressure means. Neutron absorbing control and safety rods are operated within slots in the reflector adjacent to the vessel.

  14. Geochemistry of organic-rich black shales overlying the natural nuclear fission reactors of Oklo, Republic of Gabon

    SciTech Connect

    Mossman, D.J.; Gauthier-Lafaye, F.; Nagy, B.; Rigali, M.J.

    1998-07-01

    The organic-rich black shales of the Franceville Series` FB Formation overlying the uranium ores, and natural nuclear fission reactors of Oklo, Gabon, are not notably metalliferous. Chromium, gold, silver, and barium are slightly enriched in average Oklo black shale (AOK) relative to black shale standard SDO-1. Geochemical variations among the black shale samples of the sedimentary sequence include enrichment in potassium, barium, chromium, and silver in the four lowermost samples, the presence of a bleached zone depleted in organic carbon lowermost in the sequence, and elevated rare earth element (REE) content in samples closest to the Oklo reactor zones. Hydrothermal activity has influenced the geochemistry of the black shale but is evidently not linked to reactor-driven processes. Chondrite-normalized REE patterns of Oklo black shale samples show slight enrichment in light REE and slight depletion in heavy REE, especially in the sample closest to the reactor zone. However, comparison of REE content with various petrographic facies in and near the Oklo reactors shows no apparent enrichment in fission product (intermediate) REE. With few exceptions, reactor facies all contain more REE than AOK. The chondrite-normalized REE pattern of AOK resembles that of greywacke-shale turbidites of Archean greenstone belts. The paucity of uranium and manganese in AOK is a curious anomaly in an area of world class uranium and manganese deposits.

  15. Non-nuclear Testing of Reactor Systems in the Early Flight Fission Test Facilities (EFF-TF)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    VanDyke, Melissa; Martin, James

    2004-01-01

    The Early Flight Fission-Test Facility (EFF-TF) can assist in the &sign and development of systems through highly effective non-nuclear testing of nuclear systems when technical issues associated with near-term space fission systems are "non-nuclear" in nature (e.g. system s nuclear operations are understood). For many systems. thermal simulators can he used to closely mimic fission heat deposition. Axial power profile, radial power profile. and fuel pin thermal conductivity can be matched. In addition to component and subsystem testing, operational and lifetime issues associated with the steady state and transient performance of the integrated reactor module can be investigated. Instrumentation at the EFF-TF allows accurate measurement of temperature, pressure, strain, and bulk core deformation (useful for accurately simulating nuclear behavior). Ongoing research at the EFF-TF is geared towards facilitating research, development, system integration, and system utilization via cooperative efforts with DOE laboratories, industry, universities, and other NASA centers. This paper describes the current efforts for the latter portion of 2003 and beginning of 2004.

  16. Neutronics for critical fission reactors and subcritical fission in hybrids

    SciTech Connect

    Salvatores, Massimo

    2012-06-19

    The requirements of future innovative nuclear fuel cycles will focus on safety, sustainability and radioactive waste minimization. Critical fast neutron reactors and sub-critical, external source driven systems (accelerator driven and fusion-fission hybrids) have a potential role to meet these requirements in view of their physics characteristics. This paper provides a short introduction to these features.

  17. Neutronics for critical fission reactors and subcritical fission in hybrids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salvatores, Massimo

    2012-06-01

    The requirements of future innovative nuclear fuel cycles will focus on safety, sustainability and radioactive waste minimization. Critical fast neutron reactors and sub-critical, external source driven systems (accelerator driven and fusion-fission hybrids) have a potential role to meet these requirements in view of their physics characteristics. This paper provides a short introduction to these features.

  18. Future challenges for nuclear data research in fission (u)

    SciTech Connect

    Chadwick, Mark B

    2010-01-01

    I describe some high priority research areas in nuclear fission, where applications in nuclear reactor technologies and in modeling criticality in general are demanding higher accuracies in our databases. We focus on fission cross sections, fission neutron spectra, and fission product data.

  19. NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Grebe, J.J.

    1959-12-15

    A reactor which is particularly adapted tu serve as a heat source for a nuclear powered alrcraft or rocket is described. The core of this reactor consists of a porous refractory modera;or body which is impregnated with fissionable nuclei. The core is designed so that its surface forms tapered inlet and outlet ducts which are separated by the porous moderator body. In operation a gaseous working fluid is circulated through the inlet ducts to the surface of the moderator, enters and passes through the porous body, and is heated therein. The hot gas emerges into the outlet ducts and is available to provide thrust. The principle advantage is that tremendous quantities of gas can be quickly heated without suffering an excessive pressure drop.

  20. Monitoring system for a liquid-cooled nuclear fission reactor. [PWR

    DOEpatents

    DeVolpi, A.

    1984-07-20

    The invention provides improved means for detecting the water levels in various regions of a water-cooled nuclear power reactor, viz., in the downcomer, in the core, in the inlet and outlet plenums, at the head, and elsewhere; and also for detecting the density of the water in these regions. The invention utilizes a plurality of exterior gamma radiation detectors and a collimator technique operable to sense separate regions of the reactor vessel to give respectively, unique signals for these regions, whereby comparative analysis of these signals can be used to advise of the presence and density of cooling water in the vessel.

  1. Fifty years with nuclear fission. Volume 1

    SciTech Connect

    Behrens, J.W.; Carlson, A.D.

    1989-12-31

    The news of the discovery of nuclear fission, by Otto Hahn and Fritz Strassmann in Germany, was brought to the United States by Niels Bohr in January 1939. Since its discovery, the United States, and the world for that matter, has never been the same. It therefore seemed appropriate to acknowledge the fifieth anniversary of its discovery by holding a topical meeting entitled, ``Fifty Years with Nuclear Fission,`` in the United States during the year 1989. The objective of the meeting was to bring together pioneers of the nuclear industry and other scientists and engineers to report on reminiscences of the past and on the more recent development in fission science and technology. The conference highlighted the early pioneers of the nuclear industry by dedicated a full day (April 26), consisting of two plenary sessions, at the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in Washington, DC. More recent developments in fission science and technology in addition to historical reflections were topics for two fully days of sessions (April 27 and 28) at the main site of the NIST in Gaithersburg, Maryland. The wide range of topics covered in this Volume 1 by this topical meeting included plenary invited, and contributed sessions entitled: Preclude to the First Chain Reaction -- 1932 to 1942; Early Fission Research -- Nuclear Structure and Spontaneous Fission; 50 Years of Fission, Science, and Technology; Nuclear Reactors, Secure Energy for the Future; Reactors 1; Fission Science 1; Safeguards and Space Applications; Fission Data; Nuclear Fission -- Its Various Aspects; Theory and Experiments in Support of Theory; Reactors and Safeguards; and General Research, Instrumentation, and By-Product. The individual papers have been cataloged separately.

  2. Fission product iodine release and retention in nuclear reactor accidents— experimental programme at PSI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruchertseifer, H.; Cripps, R.; Guentay, S.; Jaeckel, B.

    2003-01-01

    Iodine radionuclides constitute one of the most important fission products of uranium and plutonium. If the volatile forms would be released into the environment during a severe accident, a potential health hazard would then ensue. Understanding its behaviour is an important prerequisite for planning appropriate mitigation measures. Improved and extensive knowledge of the main iodine species and their reactions important for the release and retention processes in the reactor containment is thus mandatory. The aim of PSI's radiolytical studies is to improve the current thermodynamic and kinetic databases and the models for iodine used in severe accident computer codes. Formation of sparingly soluble silver iodide (AgI) in a PWR containment sump can substantially reduce volatile iodine fraction in the containment atmosphere. However, the effectiveness is dependent on its radiation stability. The direct radiolytic decomposition of AgI and the effect of impurities on iodine volatilisation were experimentally determined at PSI using a remote-controlled and automated high activity 188W/Re generator (40 GBq/ml). Low molecular weight organic iodides are difficult to be retained in engineered safety systems. Investigation of radiolytic decomposition of methyl iodide in aqueous solutions, combined with an on-line analysis of iodine species is currently under investigation at PSI.

  3. Liquid uranium alloy-helium fission reactor

    DOEpatents

    Minkov, Vladimir

    1986-01-01

    This invention teaches a nuclear fission reactor having a core vessel and at least one tandem heat exchanger vessel coupled therewith across upper and lower passages to define a closed flow loop. Nuclear fuel such as a uranium alloy in its liquid phase fills these vessels and flow passages. Solid control elements in the reactor core vessel are adapted to be adjusted relative to one another to control fission reaction of the liquid fuel therein. Moderator elements in the other vessel and flow passages preclude fission reaction therein. An inert gas such as helium is bubbled upwardly through the heat exchanger vessel operable to move the liquid fuel upwardly therein and unidirectionally around the closed loop and downwardly through the core vessel. This helium gas is further directed to heat conversion means outside of the reactor vessels to utilize the heat from the fission reaction to generate useful output. The nuclear fuel operates in the 1200.degree.-1800.degree. C. range, and even higher to 2500.degree. C., limited only by the thermal effectiveness of the structural materials, increasing the efficiency of power generation from the normal 30-35% with 300.degree.-500.degree. C. upper limit temperature to 50-65%. Irradiation of the circulating liquid fuel, as contrasted to only localized irradiation of a solid fuel, provides improved fuel utilization.

  4. Liquid uranium alloy-helium fission reactor

    DOEpatents

    Minkov, V.

    1984-06-13

    This invention describes a nuclear fission reactor which has a core vessel and at least one tandem heat exchanger vessel coupled therewith across upper and lower passages to define a closed flow loop. Nuclear fuel such as a uranium alloy in its liquid phase fills these vessels and flow passages. Solid control elements in the reactor core vessel are adapted to be adjusted relative to one another to control fission reaction of the liquid fuel therein. Moderator elements in the other vessel and flow passages preclude fission reaction therein. An inert gas such as helium is bubbled upwardly through the heat exchanger vessel operable to move the liquid fuel upwardly therein and unidirectionally around the closed loop and downwardly through the core vessel. This helium gas is further directed to heat conversion means outside of the reactor vessels to utilize the heat from the fission reaction to generate useful output. The nuclear fuel operates in the 1200 to 1800/sup 0/C range, and even higher to 2500/sup 0/C.

  5. Hybrid fusion-fission reactor with a thorium blanket: Its potential in the fuel cycle of nuclear reactors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shmelev, A. N.; Kulikov, G. G.; Kurnaev, V. A.; Salahutdinov, G. H.; Kulikov, E. G.; Apse, V. A.

    2015-12-01

    Discussions are currently going on as to whether it is suitable to employ thorium in the nuclear fuel cycle. This work demonstrates that the 231Pa-232U-233U-Th composition to be produced in the thorium blanket of a hybrid thermonuclear reactor (HTR) as a fuel for light-water reactors opens up the possibility of achieving high, up to 30% of heavy metals (HM), or even ultrahigh fuel burnup. This is because the above fuel composition is able to stabilize its neutron-multiplying properties in the process of high fuel burnup. In addition, it allows the nuclear fuel cycle (NFC) to be better protected against unauthorized proliferation of fissile materials owing to an unprecedentedly large fraction of 232U (several percent!) in the uranium bred from the Th blanket, which will substantially hamper the use of fissile materials in a closed NFC for purposes other than power production.

  6. Hybrid fusion–fission reactor with a thorium blanket: Its potential in the fuel cycle of nuclear reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Shmelev, A. N. Kulikov, G. G. Kurnaev, V. A. Salahutdinov, G. H. Kulikov, E. G. Apse, V. A.

    2015-12-15

    Discussions are currently going on as to whether it is suitable to employ thorium in the nuclear fuel cycle. This work demonstrates that the {sup 231}Pa–{sup 232}U–{sup 233}U–Th composition to be produced in the thorium blanket of a hybrid thermonuclear reactor (HTR) as a fuel for light-water reactors opens up the possibility of achieving high, up to 30% of heavy metals (HM), or even ultrahigh fuel burnup. This is because the above fuel composition is able to stabilize its neutron-multiplying properties in the process of high fuel burnup. In addition, it allows the nuclear fuel cycle (NFC) to be better protected against unauthorized proliferation of fissile materials owing to an unprecedentedly large fraction of {sup 232}U (several percent!) in the uranium bred from the Th blanket, which will substantially hamper the use of fissile materials in a closed NFC for purposes other than power production.

  7. Benchmarking nuclear fission theory

    SciTech Connect

    Bertsch, G. F.; Loveland, W.; Nazarewicz, W.; Talou, P.

    2015-05-14

    We suggest a small set of fission observables to be used as test cases for validation of theoretical calculations. Thus, the purpose is to provide common data to facilitate the comparison of different fission theories and models. The proposed observables are chosen from fission barriers, spontaneous fission lifetimes, fission yield characteristics, and fission isomer excitation energies.

  8. Fifty years with nuclear fission. Volume 2

    SciTech Connect

    Behrens, J.W.; Carlson, A.D.

    1989-12-31

    The news of the discovery of nucler fission, by Otto Hahn and Fritz Strassmann in Germany, was brought to the United States by Niels Bohr in January 1939. Since its discovery, the United States, and the world for that matter, has never been the same. It therefore seemed appropriate to acknowledge the fiftieth anniversary of its discovery by holding a topical meeting entitled, ``Fifty years with nuclear fission,`` in the United States during the year 1989. The objective of the meeting was to bring together pioneers of the nuclear industry and other scientists and engineers to report on reminiscences of the past and on the more recent developments in fission science and technology. The conference highlighted the early pioneers of the nuclear industry by dedicating a full day (April 26), consisting of two plenary sessions, at the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in Washington, DC. More recent developments in fission science and technology in addition to historical reflections were topics for two full days of sessions (April 27 and 28) at the main sites of the NIST in Gaithersburg, Maryland. The wide range of topics covered by Volume 2 of this topical meeting included plenary invited, and contributed sessions entitled, Nuclear fission -- a prospective; reactors II; fission science II; medical and industrial applications by by-products; reactors and safeguards; general research, instrumentation, and by-products; and fission data, astrophysics, and space applications. The individual papers have been cataloged separately.

  9. Fissioning Plasma Core Reactor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Albright, Dennis; Butler, Carey; West, Nicole; Cole, John W. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    Institute for Scientific Research, Inc. (ISR) research program consist of: 1.Study core physics by adapting existing codes: MCNP4C - Monte Carlo code; COMBINE/VENTURE - diffusion theory; SCALE4 - Monte Carlo, with many utility codes. 2. Determine feasibility and study major design parameters: fuel selection, temperature and reflector sizing. 3. Study reactor kinetics: develop QCALC1 to model point kinetics; study dynamic behavior of the power release.

  10. Nuclear reactor fuel element

    DOEpatents

    Johnson, Carl E.; Crouthamel, Carl E.

    1980-01-01

    A nuclear reactor fuel element is described which has an outer cladding, a central core of fissionable or mixed fissionable and fertile fuel material and a layer of oxygen gettering material on the inner surface of the cladding. The gettering material reacts with oxygen released by the fissionable material during irradiation of the core thereby preventing the oxygen from reacting with and corroding the cladding. Also described is an improved method for coating the inner surface of the cladding with a layer of gettering material.

  11. Fissioning uranium plasmas and nuclear-pumped lasers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schneider, R. T.; Thom, K.

    1975-01-01

    Current research into uranium plasmas, gaseous-core (cavity) reactors, and nuclear-pumped lasers is discussed. Basic properties of fissioning uranium plasmas are summarized together with potential space and terrestrial applications of gaseous-core reactors and nuclear-pumped lasers. Conditions for criticality of a uranium plasma are outlined, and it is shown that the nonequilibrium state and the optical thinness of a fissioning plasma can be exploited for the direct conversion of fission fragment energy into coherent light (i.e., for nuclear-pumped lasers). Successful demonstrations of nuclear-pumped lasers are described together with gaseous-fuel reactor experiments using uranium hexafluoride.

  12. NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Grebe, J.J.

    1961-01-24

    A core structure for neutronic reactors adapted for the propulsion of aircraft and rockets is offered. The core is designed for cooling by gaseous media, and comprises a plurality of hollow tapered tubular segments of a porous moderating material impregniated with fissionable fuel nested about a common axis. Alternate ends of the segments are joined. In operation a coolant gas passes through the porous structure and is heated.

  13. Nuclear characteristics of a fissioning uranium plasma test reactor with light-water cooling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whitmarsh, C. L., Jr.

    1973-01-01

    An analytical study was performed to determine a design configuration for a cavity test reactor. Test section criteria were that an average flux of 10 to the 15th power neutrons/sq cm/sec (E less than or equal to 0.12 eV) be supplied to a 61-cm-diameter spherical cavity at 200-atm pressure. Design objectives were to minimize required driver power, to use existing fuel-element technology, and to obtain fuel-element life of 10 to 100 full-power hours. Parameter calculations were made on moderator region size and material, driver fuel arrangement, control system, and structure in order to determine a feasible configuration. Although not optimized, a configuration was selected which would meet design criteria. The driver fuel region was a cylindrical annular region, one element thick, of 33 MTR-type H2O-cooled elements (Al-U fuel plate configuration), each 101 cm long. The region between the spherical test cavity and the cylindrical driver fuel region was Be (10 vol. % H2O coolant) with a midplane dimension of 8 cm. Exterior to the driver fuel, the 25-cm-thick cylindrical and axial reflectors were also Be with 10 vol. % H2O coolant. The entire reactor was contained in a 10-cm-thick steel pressure vessel, and the 200-atm cavity pressure was equalized throughout the driver reactor. Fuel-element life was 50 hr at the required driver power of 200 MW. Reactor control would be achieved with rotating poison drums located in the cylindrical reflector region. A control range of about 18 percent delta k/k was required for reactor operation.

  14. ''Subthreshold'' reactions involving nuclear fission

    SciTech Connect

    Goldhaber, M.; Shrock, R.

    2001-02-01

    We analyze reactions of several types that are naively below threshold but can proceed because of the release of binding energy from nuclear fission and occasionally the formation of Coulombic bound states. These reactions include (i) photofission with pion production and (ii) charged current neutrino-nucleus reactions that lead to fission and/or formation of a Coulomb bound state of a {mu}{sup -} with the nucleus of a fission fragment. We comment on the possible experimental observation of these reactions.

  15. Accurate Fission Data for Nuclear Safety

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Solders, A.; Gorelov, D.; Jokinen, A.; Kolhinen, V. S.; Lantz, M.; Mattera, A.; Penttilä, H.; Pomp, S.; Rakopoulos, V.; Rinta-Antila, S.

    2014-05-01

    The Accurate fission data for nuclear safety (AlFONS) project aims at high precision measurements of fission yields, using the renewed IGISOL mass separator facility in combination with a new high current light ion cyclotron at the University of Jyväskylä. The 30 MeV proton beam will be used to create fast and thermal neutron spectra for the study of neutron induced fission yields. Thanks to a series of mass separating elements, culminating with the JYFLTRAP Penning trap, it is possible to achieve a mass resolving power in the order of a few hundred thousands. In this paper we present the experimental setup and the design of a neutron converter target for IGISOL. The goal is to have a flexible design. For studies of exotic nuclei far from stability a high neutron flux (1012 neutrons/s) at energies 1 - 30 MeV is desired while for reactor applications neutron spectra that resembles those of thermal and fast nuclear reactors are preferred. It is also desirable to be able to produce (semi-)monoenergetic neutrons for benchmarking and to study the energy dependence of fission yields. The scientific program is extensive and is planed to start in 2013 with a measurement of isomeric yield ratios of proton induced fission in uranium. This will be followed by studies of independent yields of thermal and fast neutron induced fission of various actinides.

  16. NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Sherman, J.; Sharbaugh, J.E.; Fauth, W.L. Jr.; Palladino, N.J.; DeHuff, P.G.

    1962-10-23

    A nuclear reactor incorporating seed and blanket assemblies is designed. Means are provided for obtaining samples of the coolant from the blanket assemblies and for varying the flow of coolant through the blanket assemblies. (AEC)

  17. Undergraduate Measurements For Fission Reactor Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hicks, S. F.; Kersting, L. J.; Lueck, C. J.; McDonough, P.; Crider, B. P.; McEllistrem, M. T.; Peters, E. E.; Vanhoy, J. R.

    2011-06-01

    Undergraduate students at the University of Dallas (UD) have investigated elastic and inelastic neutron scattering cross sections on structural materials important for criticality considerations in nuclear fission processes. Neutrons scattered off of 23Na and NatFe were detected using neutron time-of-flight techniques at the University of Kentucky Low-Energy Nuclear Accelerator Facility. These measurements are part of an effort to increase the efficiency of power generation from existing fission reactors in the US and in the design of new fission systems. Students have learned the basics of how to operate the Model CN Van de Graaff generator at the laboratory, setup detectors and electronics, use data acquisition systems, and they are currently analyzing the angular dependence of the scattered neutrons for incident neutron energies of 3.57 and 3.80 MeV. Most students participating in the project will use the research experience as the material for their undergraduate research thesis required for all Bachelor of Science students at the University of Dallas. The first student projects on this topic were completed during the summer of 2010; an overview of student participation in this investigation and their preliminary results will be presented.

  18. Fission fragment assisted reactor concept for space propulsion: Foil reactor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wright, Steven A.

    1991-01-01

    The concept is to fabricate a reactor using thin films or foils of uranium, uranium oxide and then to coat them on substrates. These coatings would be made so thin as to allow the escaping fission fragments to directly heat a hydrogen propellant. The idea was studied of direct gas heating and direct gas pumping in a nuclear pumped laser program. Fission fragments were used to pump lasers. In this concept two substrates are placed opposite each other. The internal faces are coated with thin foil of uranium oxide. A few of the advantages of this technology are listed. In general, however, it is felt that if one look at all solid core nuclear thermal rockets or nuclear thermal propulsion methods, one is going to find that they all pretty much look the same. It is felt that this reactor has higher potential reliability. It has low structural operating temperatures, very short burn times, with graceful failure modes, and it has reduced potential for energetic accidents. Going to a design like this would take the NTP community part way to some of the very advanced engine designs, such as the gas core reactor, but with reduced risk because of the much lower temperatures.

  19. Future Scenarios for Fission Based Reactors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    David, S.

    2005-04-01

    The coming century will see the exhaustion of standard fossil fuels, coal, gas and oil, which today represent 75% of the world energy production. Moreover, their use will have caused large-scale emission of greenhouse gases (GEG), and induced global climate change. This problem is exacerbated by a growing world energy demand. In this context, nuclear power is the only GEG-free energy source available today capable of responding significantly to this demand. Some scenarios consider a nuclear energy production of around 5 Gtoe in 2050, wich would represent a 20% share of the world energy supply. Present reactors generate energy from the fission of U-235 and require around 200 tons of natural Uranium to produce 1GWe.y of energy, equivalent to the fission of one ton of fissile material. In a scenario of a significant increase in nuclear energy generation, these standard reactors will consume the whole of the world's estimated Uranium reserves in a few decades. However, natural Uranium or Thorium ore, wich are not themselves fissile, can produce a fissile material after a neutron capture ( 239Pu and 233U respectively). In a breeder reactor, the mass of fissile material remains constant, and the fertile ore is the only material to be consumed. In this case, only 1 ton of natural ore is needed to produce 1GWe.y. Thus, the breeding concept allows optimal use of fertile ore and development of sustainable nuclear energy production for several thousand years into the future. Different sustainable nuclear reactor concepts are studied in the international forum "generation IV". Different types of coolant (Na, Pb and He) are studied for fast breeder reactors based on the Uranium cycle. The thermal Thorium cycle requires the use of a liquid fuel, which can be reprocessed online in order to extract the neutron poisons. This paper presents these different sustainable reactors, based on the Uranium or Thorium fuel cycles and will compare the different options in term of fissile

  20. NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Treshow, M.

    1958-08-19

    A neuclear reactor is described of the heterogeneous type and employing replaceable tubular fuel elements and heavy water as a coolant and moderator. A pluraltty of fuel tubesa having their axes parallel, extend through a tank type pressure vessel which contatns the liquid moderator. The fuel elements are disposed within the fuel tubes in the reaetive portion of the pressure vessel during normal operation and the fuel tubes have removable plug members at each end to permit charging and discharging of the fuel elements. The fuel elements are cylindrical strands of jacketed fissionable material having helical exterior ribs. A bundle of fuel elements are held within each fuel tube with their longitudinal axes parallel, the ribs serving to space them apart along their lengths. Coolant liquid is circulated through the fuel tubes between the spaced fuel elements. Suitable control rod and monitoring means are provided for controlling the reactor.

  1. Nuclear Reactor Safety: a current awareness bulletin

    SciTech Connect

    Cunningham, D.C.

    1985-01-15

    Nuclear Reactor Safety announces on a semimonthly basis the current worldwide information available on all safety-related aspects of fission reactors, including: accident analysis, safety systems, radiation protection, decommissioning and dismantling, and security measures.

  2. NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Grebe, J.J.

    1959-07-14

    High temperature reactors which are uniquely adapted to serve as the heat source for nuclear pcwered rockets are described. The reactor is comprised essentially of an outer tubular heat resistant casing which provides the main coolant passageway to and away from the reactor core within the casing and in which the working fluid is preferably hydrogen or helium gas which is permitted to vaporize from a liquid storage tank. The reactor core has a generally spherical shape formed entirely of an active material comprised of fissile material and a moderator material which serves as a diluent. The active material is fabricated as a gas permeable porous material and is interlaced in a random manner with very small inter-connecting bores or capillary tubes through which the coolant gas may flow. The entire reactor is divided into successive sections along the direction of the temperature gradient or coolant flow, each section utilizing materials of construction which are most advantageous from a nuclear standpoint and which at the same time can withstand the operating temperature of that particular zone. This design results in a nuclear reactor characterized simultaneously by a minimum critiral size and mass and by the ability to heat a working fluid to an extremely high temperature.

  3. NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Miller, H.I.; Smith, R.C.

    1958-01-21

    This patent relates to nuclear reactors of the type which use a liquid fuel, such as a solution of uranyl sulfate in ordinary water which acts as the moderator. The reactor is comprised of a spherical vessel having a diameter of about 12 inches substantially surrounded by a reflector of beryllium oxide. Conventionnl control rods and safety rods are operated in slots in the reflector outside the vessel to control the operation of the reactor. An additional means for increasing the safety factor of the reactor by raising the ratio of delayed neutrons to prompt neutrons, is provided and consists of a soluble sulfate salt of beryllium dissolved in the liquid fuel in the proper proportion to obtain the result desired.

  4. Uraninite: A 2 Ga spent nuclear fuel from the natural fission reactor at Bangombe in Gabon, West Africa

    SciTech Connect

    Jensen, K.A.; Ewing, R.C.; Gauthier-Lafaye, F.

    1997-12-31

    Uraninites from the Bangombe natural fission reactor (RZB) and normal uranium-ore occur as fine veins in the sandstone host-rock as well as altered, broken, and slightly displaced grains in an illitic matrix, and in nodules and veins of solid bitumen. Inclusions of galena, (Y,Gd)-rich phosphates, a Pb-oxide and a Ti-oxide? were observed. Uraninites just below RZB were partially altered to a uranyl-sulfate. Three generations of uraninite were identified based on their PbO-contents of 8--11.06 wt%, 6 wt% (the largest population), and a younger generation with 3 wt%. Diffusional loss of Pb is indicated by the presence of a Pb-oxide at the interface to the uraninites. The behavior of the metallic fission products, incompatible with the uraninite structure, may mimic the behavior of Pb in these uraninites. The averaged impurity-content ranges from 4.29 to 6.89 wt%, and consists mainly of SiO{sub 2}, TiO{sub 2}, ZrO{sub 2}, FeO, CaO, Al{sub 2}O{sub 3} and P{sub 2}O{sub 5}. The averaged content of Y{sub 2}O{sub 3} and the Ln`s is less than 0.78 wt% and there is a scattered positive correlation with P{sub 2}O{sub 5}. The content of Y + Ln`s is generally highest in the uraninites from RZB. Uraninite hydration and the formation of uranopelite/zippeite have caused complete loss of Y and the Ln`s. The analytical results indicate that Y and the Ln`s, which are high yield fission products, may be released from uraninite during alteration in the presence of P.

  5. Updated comparison of economics of fusion reactors with advanced fission reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Delene, J.G.

    1990-01-01

    The projected cost of electricity (COE) for fusion is compared with that from current and advanced nuclear fission and coal-fired plants. Fusion cost models were adjusted for consistency with advanced fission plants and the calculational methodology and cost factors follow guidelines recommended for cost comparisons of advanced fission reactors. The results show COEs of about 59--74 mills/kWh for the fusion designs considered. In comparison, COEs for future fission reactors are estimated to be in the 43--54 mills/kWh range with coal-fired plant COEs of about 53--69 mills/kWh ($2--3/GJ coal). The principal cost driver for the fusion plants relative to fission plants is the fusion island cost. Although the estimated COEs for fusion are greater than those for fission or coal, the costs are not so high as to preclude fusion's competitiveness as a safe and environmentally sound alternative.

  6. Dynamical Aspects of Nuclear Fission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kliman, J.; Itkis, M. G.; Gmuca, Š.

    2008-11-01

    Fission dynamics. Dependence of scission-neutron yield on light-fragment mass for [symbol]=1/2 [et al.]. Dynamics of capture quasifission and fusion-fission competition / L. Stuttgé ... [et al.] -- Fission-fission. The processes of fusion-fission and quasi-fission of superheavy nuclei / M. G. Itkis ... [et al.]. Fission and quasifission in the reactions [symbol]Ca+[symbol]Pb and [symbol]Ni+[symbol]W / G. N. Knyazheva ... [et al.]. Mass-energy characteristics of reactions [symbol]Fe+[symbol][symbol][symbol]266Hs and [symbol]Mg+[symbol]Cm[symbol][symbol]Hs at Coulomb barrier / L. Krupa ... [et al.]. Fusion of heavy ions at extreme sub-barrier energies / Ş. Mişicu and H. Esbensen. Fusion and fission dynamics of heavy nuclear system / V. Zagrebaev and W. Greiner. Time-dependent potential energy for fusion and fission processes / A. V. Karpov ... [et al.] -- Superheavy elements. Advances in the understanding of structure and production mechanisms for superheavy elements / W. Greiner and V. Zagrebaev. Fission barriers of heaviest nuclei / A. Sobiczewski ... [et al.]. Possibility of synthesizing doubly magic superheavy nuclei / Y Aritomo ... [et al.]. Synthesis of superheavy nuclei in [symbol]Ca-induced reactions / V. K. Utyonkov ... [et al.] -- Fragmentation. Production of neutron-rich nuclei in the nucleus-nucleus collisions around the Fermi energy / M. Veselský. Signals of enlarged core in [symbol]Al / Y. G. Ma ... [et al.] -- Exotic modes. New insight into the fission process from experiments with relativistic heavy-ion beams / K.-H. Schmidt ... [et al.]. New results for the intensity of bimodal fission in binary and ternary spontaneous fission of [symbol]Cf / C. Goodin ... [et al.]. Rare fission modes: study of multi-cluster decays of actinide nuclei / D. V. Kamanin ... [et al.]. Energy distribution of ternary [symbol]-particles in [symbol]Cf(sf) / M. Mutterer ... [et al.]. Preliminary results of experiment aimed at searching for collinear cluster tripartition of

  7. NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Young, G.

    1963-01-01

    This patent covers a power-producing nuclear reactor in which fuel rods of slightly enriched U are moderated by heavy water and cooled by liquid metal. The fuel rods arranged parallel to one another in a circle are contained in a large outer closed-end conduit that extends into a tank containing the heavy water. Liquid metal is introduced into the large conduit by a small inner conduit that extends within the circle of fuel rods to a point near the lower closed end of the outer conduit. (AEC) Production Reactors

  8. NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Long, E.; Ashby, J.W.

    1958-09-16

    ABS>A graphite moderator structure is presented for a nuclear reactor compriscd of an assembly of similarly orientated prismatic graphite blocks arranged on spaced longitudinal axes lying in common planes wherein the planes of the walls of the blocks are positioned so as to be twisted reintive to the planes of said axes so thatthe unlmpeded dtrect paths in direction wholly across the walls of the blocks are limited to the width of the blocks plus spacing between the blocks.

  9. Technical Bases to Aid in the Decision of Conducting Full Power Ground Nuclear Tests for Space Fission Reactors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hixson, Laurie L.; Houts, Michael G.; Clement, Steven D.

    2004-02-01

    The extent to which, if any, full power ground nuclear testing of space reactors should be performed has been a point of discussion within the industry for decades. Do the benefits outweigh the risks? Are there equivalent alternatives? Can a test facility be constructed (or modified) in a reasonable amount of time? Is the test article an accurate representation of the flight system? Are the costs too restrictive? The obvious benefits of full power ground nuclear testing; obtaining systems integrated reliability data on a full-scale, complete end-to-end system; come at some programmatic risk. Safety related information is not obtained from a full-power ground nuclear test. This paper will discuss and assess these and other technical considerations essential in the decision to conduct full power ground nuclear-or alternative-tests.

  10. Lasers from fission. [nuclear pumping feasibility experiments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schneider, R. T.; Thom, K.; Helmick, H. H.

    1975-01-01

    The feasibility of the nuclear pumping of lasers was demonstrated in three experiments conducted independently at three different laboratories. In this context nuclear pumping of lasers is understood to be the excitation of a laser by the kinetic energy of the fission fragments only. A description is given of research concerned with the use of nuclear energy for the excitation of gas lasers. Experimental work was supplemented by theoretical research. Attention is given to a nuclear pumped He-Xe laser, a nuclear pumped CO laser, and a neon-nitrogen laser pumped by alpha particles. Studies involving uranium hexafluoride admixture to laser media are discussed along with research on uranium hexafluoride-fueled reactors.

  11. Nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Wade, Elman E.

    1979-01-01

    A nuclear reactor including two rotatable plugs and a positive top core holddown structure. The top core holddown structure is divided into two parts: a small core cover, and a large core cover. The small core cover, and the upper internals associated therewith, are attached to the small rotating plug, and the large core cover, with its associated upper internals, is attached to the large rotating plug. By so splitting the core holddown structures, under-the-plug refueling is accomplished without the necessity of enlarging the reactor pressure vessel to provide a storage space for the core holddown structure during refueling. Additionally, the small and large rotating plugs, and their associated core covers, are arranged such that the separation of the two core covers to permit rotation is accomplished without the installation of complex lifting mechanisms.

  12. NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Long, E.; Ashley, J.W.

    1958-12-16

    A graphite moderator structure is described for a gas-cooled nuclear reactor having a vertical orlentation wherein the structure is physically stable with regard to dlmensional changes due to Wigner growth properties of the graphite, and leakage of coolant gas along spaces in the structure is reduced. The structure is comprised of stacks of unlform right prismatic graphite blocks positioned in layers extending in the direction of the lengths of the blocks, the adjacent end faces of the blocks being separated by pairs of tiles. The blocks and tiles have central bores which are in alignment when assembled and are provided with cooperatlng keys and keyways for physical stability.

  13. Neutron irradiation facilities for fission and fusion reactor materials studies

    SciTech Connect

    Rowcliffe, A.F.

    1985-01-01

    The successful development of energy-conversion machines based upon nuclear fission or fusion reactors is critically dependent upon the behavior of the engineering materials used to construct the full containment and primary heat extraction systems. The development of radiation damage-resistant materials requires irradiation testing facilities which reproduce, as closely as possible, the thermal and neutronic environment expected in a power-producing reactor. The Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) reference core design for the Center for Neutron Research (CNR) reactor provides for instrumented facilities in regions of both hard and mixed neutron spectra, with substantially higher fluxes than are currently available. The benefits of these new facilities to the development of radiation damage resistant materials are discussed in terms of the major US fission and fusion reactor programs.

  14. Propellant actuated nuclear reactor steam depressurization valve

    DOEpatents

    Ehrke, Alan C.; Knepp, John B.; Skoda, George I.

    1992-01-01

    A nuclear fission reactor combined with a propellant actuated depressurization and/or water injection valve is disclosed. The depressurization valve releases pressure from a water cooled, steam producing nuclear reactor when required to insure the safety of the reactor. Depressurization of the reactor pressure vessel enables gravity feeding of supplementary coolant water through the water injection valve to the reactor pressure vessel to prevent damage to the fuel core.

  15. The Future of Energy from Nuclear Fission

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Son H.; Taiwo, Temitope

    2013-04-13

    Nuclear energy is an important part of our current global energy system, and contributes to supplying the significant demand for electricity for many nations around the world. There are 433 commercial nuclear power reactors operating in 30 countries with an installed capacity of 367 GWe as of October 2011 (IAEA PRIS, 2011). Nuclear electricity generation totaled 2630 TWh in 2010 representing 14% the world’s electricity generation. The top five countries of total installed nuclear capacity are the US, France, Japan, Russia and South Korea at 102, 63, 45, 24, and 21 GWe, respectively (WNA, 2012a). The nuclear capacity of these five countries represents more than half, 68%, of the total global nuclear capacity. The role of nuclear power in the global energy system today has been motivated by several factors including the growing demand for electric power, the regional availability of fossil resources and energy security concerns, and the relative competitiveness of nuclear power as a source of base-load electricity. There is additional motivation for the use of nuclear power because it does not produce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions or local air pollutants during its operation and contributes to low levels of emissions throughout the lifecycle of the nuclear energy system (Beerten, J. et. al., 2009). Energy from nuclear fission primarily in the form of electric power and potentially as a source of industrial heat could play a greater role for meeting the long-term growing demand for energy worldwide while addressing the concern for climate change from rising GHG emissions. However, the nature of nuclear fission as a tremendously compact and dense form of energy production with associated high concentrations of radioactive materials has particular and unique challenges as well as benefits. These challenges include not only the safety and cost of nuclear reactors, but proliferation concerns, safeguard and storage of nuclear materials associated with nuclear fuel

  16. Nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Pennell, William E.; Rowan, William J.

    1977-01-01

    A nuclear reactor in which the core components, including fuel-rod assemblies, control-rod assemblies, fertile rod-assemblies, and removable shielding assemblies, are supported by a plurality of separate inlet modular units. These units are referred to as inlet module units to distinguish them from the modules of the upper internals of the reactor. The modular units are supported, each removable independently of the others, in liners in the supporting structure for the lower internals of the reactor. The core assemblies are removably supported in integral receptacles or sockets of the modular units. The liners, units, sockets and assmblies have inlet openings for entry of the fluid. The modular units are each removably mounted in the liners with fluid seals interposed between the opening in the liner and inlet module into which the fluid enters and the upper and lower portion of the liner. Each assembly is similarly mounted in a corresponding receptacle with fluid seals interposed between the openings where the fluid enters and the lower portion of the receptacle or fitting closely in these regions. As fluid flows along each core assembly a pressure drop is produced along the fluid so that the fluid which emerges from each core assembly is at a lower pressure than the fluid which enters the core assembly. However because of the seals interposed in the mountings of the units and assemblies the pressures above and below the units and assemblies are balanced and the units are held in the liners and the assemblies are held in the receptacles by their weights as they have a higher specific gravity than the fluid. The low-pressure spaces between each module and its liner and between each core assembly and its module is vented to the low-pressure regions of the vessel to assure that fluid which leaks through the seals does not accumulate and destroy the hydraulic balance.

  17. Deployment of a three-dimensional array of Micro-Pocket Fission Detector triads (MPFD3) for real-time, in-core neutron flux measurements in the Kansas State University TRIGA Mark-II Nuclear Reactor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohmes, Martin Francis

    A Micro-Pocket Fission Detector (MPFD) is a miniaturized type of fission chamber developed for use inside a nuclear reactor. Their unique design allows them to be located between or even inside fuel pins while being built from materials which give them an operational lifetime comparable to or exceeding the life of the fuel. While other types of neutron detectors have been made for use inside a nuclear reactor, the MPFD is the first neutron detector which can survive sustained use inside a nuclear reactor while providing a real-time measurement of the neutron flux. This dissertation covers the deployment of MPFDs as a large three-dimensional array inside the Kansas State University TRIGA Mark-II Nuclear Reactor for real-time neutron flux measurements. This entails advancements in the design, construction, and packaging of the Micro-Pocket Fission Detector Triads with incorporated Thermocouple, or MPFD3-T. Specialized electronics and software also had to be designed and built in order to make a functional system capable of collecting real-time data from up to 60 MPFD3-Ts, or 180 individual MPFDs and 60 thermocouples. Design of the electronics required the development of detailed simulations and analysis for determining the theoretical response of the detectors and determination of their size. The results of this research shows that MPFDs can operate for extended times inside a nuclear reactor and can be utilized toward the use as distributed neutron detector arrays for advanced reactor control systems and power mapping. These functions are critical for continued gains in efficiency of nuclear power reactors while also improving safety through relatively inexpensive redundancy.

  18. Safety characteristics of a suspended-pellet fission reactor system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kingdon, David Ross

    A new fission reactor system with passive safety characteristics to eliminate the occurrence of loss-of-coolant accidents, reduce reactivity excursion effects, and which also provides for closure of the nuclear fuel cycle through on-site spent fuel management is examined. The concept uses multi-coated fuel pellets which are suspended by an upward moving coolant in vertical columns of the reactor core and electro-refining elemental separation to remove selected fission products prior to actinide recycling. The possibility of fuel melt following a loss-of-coolant is avoided as a decrease in coolant flow results in the removal of fuel from the core through the action of gravity alone. Average fluid velocities in the columns which are necessary to suspend the pellets are calculated and found to be consistent with the necessary heat extraction to yield ˜1--10 Wth per column. The total output power of such suspended pellet-type reactors is compared to the power necessary to provide the suspending fluid flow, yielding favourable ratios of ˜102--103. The reduction of reactivity excursion tendencies is envisaged through an ablative layer of material in the pellets which sublimates at temperatures above normal operating conditions. In the event of a power or temperature increase the particles fragment and thereby change their hydrodynamic drag characteristics, thus leading to fuel removal from the core by elutriation. Comparison of nuclear-to-thermal response times and elutriation rates for limiting power transients indicate that the present design assists in reactivity excursion mitigation. Closure of the nuclear fuel cycle is attained through a spent fuel management strategy which requires only on-site storage of a fraction of the fission products produced during reactor operation. Electro-refining separation of selected fission products combined with complete actinide recycling yields no isolation of plutonium or highly enriched uranium during the procedure. The out

  19. Nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Yant, Howard W.; Stinebiser, Karl W.; Anzur, Gregory C.

    1977-01-01

    A nuclear reactor, particularly a liquid-metal breeder reactor, whose upper internals include outlet modules for channeling the liquid-metal coolant from selected areas of the outlet of the core vertically to the outlet plenum. The modules are composed of a highly-refractory, high corrosion-resistant alloy, for example, INCONEL-718. Each module is disposed to confine and channel generally vertically the coolant emitted from a subplurality of core-component assemblies. Each module has a grid with openings, each opening disposed to receive the coolant from an assembly of the subplurality. The grid in addition serves as a holdown for the assemblies of the corresponding subplurality preventing their excessive ejection upwardly from the core. In the region directly over the core the outlet modules are of such peripheral form that they nest forming a continuum over the core-component assemblies whose outlet coolant they confine. Each subassembly includes a chimney which confines the coolant emitted by its corresponding subassemblies to generally vertical flow between the outlet of the core and the outlet plenum. Each subplurality of assemblies whose emitted coolant is confined by an outlet module includes assemblies which emit lower-temperature coolant, for example, a control-rod assembly, or fertile assemblies, and assemblies which emit coolant of substantially higher temperature, for example, fuel-rod assemblies. The coolants of different temperatures are mixed in the chimneys reducing the effect of stripping (hot-cold temperature fluctuations) on the remainder of the upper internals which are composed typically of AISI-304 or AISI-316 stainless steel.

  20. Nuclear reactor shutdown system

    DOEpatents

    Bhate, Suresh K.; Cooper, Martin H.; Riffe, Delmar R.; Kinney, Calvin L.

    1981-01-01

    An inherent shutdown system for a nuclear reactor having neutron absorbing rods affixed to an armature which is held in an upper position by a magnetic flux flowing through a Curie temperature material. The Curie temperature material is fixedly positioned about the exterior of an inner duct in an annular region through which reactor coolant flows. Elongated fuel rods extending from within the core upwardly toward the Curie temperature material are preferably disposed within the annular region. Upon abnormal conditions which result in high neutron flux and coolant temperature, the Curie material loses its magnetic permeability, breaking the magnetic flux path and allowing the armature and absorber rods to drop into the core, thus shutting down the fissioning reaction. The armature and absorber rods are retrieved by lowering the housing for the electromagnet forming coils which create a magnetic flux path which includes the inner duct wall. The coil housing then is raised, resetting the armature.

  1. Nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Thomson, Wallace B.

    2004-03-16

    A nuclear reactor comprising a cylindrical pressure vessel, an elongated annular core centrally disposed within and spaced from the pressure vessel, and a plurality of ducts disposed longitudinally of the pressure vessel about the periphery thereof, said core comprising an annular active portion, an annular reflector just inside the active portion, and an annular reflector just outside the active a portion, said annular active portion comprising rectangular slab, porous fuel elements radially disposed around the inner reflector and extending the length of the active portion, wedge-shaped, porous moderator elements disposed adjacent one face of each fuel element and extending the length of the fuel element, the fuel and moderator elements being oriented so that the fuel elements face each other and the moderator elements do likewise, adjacent moderator elements being spaced to provide air inlet channels, and adjacent fuel elements being spaced to provide air outlet channels which communicate with the interior of the peripheral ducts, and means for introducing air into the air inlet channels which passes through the porous moderator elements and porous fuel elements to the outlet channel.

  2. Fission energy: The integral fast reactor

    SciTech Connect

    Chang, Yoon I.

    1989-01-01

    The Integral Fast Reactor (IFR) is an innovative reactor concept being developed at Argonne National Laboratory as a such next- generation reactor concept. The IFR concept has a number of specific technical advantages that collectively address the potential difficulties facing the expansion of nuclear power deployment. In particular, the IFR concept can meet all three fundamental requirements needed in a next-generation reactor as discussed below. This document discusses these requirements.

  3. NUCLEAR REACTOR AND THERMIONIC FUEL ELEMENT THEREFOR

    DOEpatents

    Rasor, N.S.; Hirsch, R.L.

    1963-12-01

    The patent relates to the direct conversion of fission heat to electricity by use of thermionic plasma diodes having fissionable material cathodes, said diodes arranged to form a critical mass in a nuclear reactor. The patent describes a fuel element comprising a plurality of diodes each having a fissionable material cathode, an anode around said cathode, and an ionizable gas therebetween. Provision is made for flowing the gas and current serially through the diodes. (AEC)

  4. Control system for a small fission reactor

    DOEpatents

    Burelbach, J.P.; Kann, W.J.; Saiveau, J.G.

    1985-02-08

    A system for controlling the reactivity of a small fission reactor includes an elongated, flexible hollow tube in the general form of a helical coiled spring axially positioned around and outside of the reactor vessel in an annular space between the reactor vessel and a surrounding cylindrical-shaped neutron reflector. A neutron absorbing material is provided within the hollow tube with the rate of the reaction controlled by the extension and compression of the hollow tube, e.g., extension of the tube increases reactivity while its compression reduces reactivity, in varying the amount of neutron absorbing material disposed between the reactor vessel and the neutron reflector. Conventional mechanical displacement means may be employed to control the coil density of the hollow tube as desired.

  5. Role of organic matter in the Proterozoic Oklo natural fission reactors, Gabon, Africa

    SciTech Connect

    Nagy, B.; Rigali, M.J.; Gauthier-Lafaye, F.; Holliger, P.; Mossman, D.J.; Leventhal, J.S.

    1993-07-01

    Of the sixteen known Oklo and the Bangombe natural fission reactors (hydrothermally altered elastic sedimentary rocks that contain abundant uraninite and authigenic clay minerals), reactors 1 to 6 at Oklo contain only traces of organic matter, but the others are rich in organic substances. Reactors 7 to 9 are the subjects of this study. These organic-rich reactors may serve as time-tested analogues for anthropogenic nuclear-waste containment strategies. Organic matter helped to concentrate quantities of uranium sufficient to initiate the nuclear chain reactions. Liquid bitumen was generated from organic matter by hydrothermal reactions during nuclear criticality. The bitumen soon became a solid, consisting of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and an intimate mixture of cryptocrystalline graphite, which enclosed and immobilized uraninite and the fission-generated isotopes entrapped in uraninite. This mechanism prevented major loss of uranium and fission products from the natural nuclear reactors for 1.2 b.y. 24 refs., 4 figs.

  6. Fission-product release from TRIGA-LEU reactor fuels

    SciTech Connect

    Baldwin, N.L.; Foushee, F.C.; Greenwood, J.S.

    1980-11-01

    The release of fission products, both gaseous and volatile metals, from TRIGA fuel is important for the analysis of possible accident conditions related to reactor operation and the design of future TRIGA fuel systems. Because of present national concerns over nuclear proliferation, it has become clear that future reactor fuels will, of necessity, utilize low-enriched uranium (LEU, enrichment <20%). This will require increasing the total uranium loading per unit volume of the higher-loaded TRIGA fuels for the purpose of maintaining the appropriate fissile loading. Because of these new developments, tests were conducted to determine the fractional release of gaseous and metallic fission products from typical uranium-zirconium hydride TRIGA fuels containing 8.5 to 45 wt % uranium.

  7. Proliferation Resistant Nuclear Reactor Fuel

    SciTech Connect

    Gray, L W; Moody, K J; Bradley, K S; Lorenzana, H E

    2011-02-18

    Global appetite for fission power is projected to grow dramatically this century, and for good reason. Despite considerable research to identify new sources of energy, fission remains the most plentiful and practical alternative to fossil fuels. The environmental challenges of fossil fuel have made the fission power option increasingly attractive, particularly as we are forced to rely on reserves in ecologically fragile or politically unstable corners of the globe. Caught between a globally eroding fossil fuel reserve as well as the uncertainty and considerable costs in the development of fusion power, most of the world will most likely come to rely on fission power for at least the remainder of the 21st century. Despite inevitable growth, fission power faces enduring challenges in sustainability and security. One of fission power's greatest hurdles to universal acceptance is the risk of potential misuse for nefarious purposes of fissionable byproducts in spent fuel, such as plutonium. With this issue in mind, we have discussed intrinsic concepts in this report that are motivated by the premise that the utility, desirability, and applicability of nuclear materials can be reduced. In a general sense, the intrinsic solutions aim to reduce or eliminate the quantity of existing weapons usable material; avoid production of new weapons-usable material through enrichment, breeding, extraction; or employ engineering solutions to make the fuel cycle less useful or more difficult for producing weapons-usable material. By their nature, these schemes require modifications to existing fuel cycles. As such, the concomitants of these modifications require engagement from the nuclear reactor and fuel-design community to fully assess their effects. Unfortunately, active pursuit of any scheme that could further complicate the spread of domestic nuclear power will probably be understandably unpopular. Nevertheless, the nonproliferation and counterterrorism issues are paramount, and

  8. NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Moore, R.V.; Bowen, J.H.; Dent, K.H.

    1958-12-01

    A heterogeneous, natural uranium fueled, solid moderated, gas cooled reactor is described, in which the fuel elements are in the form of elongated rods and are dlsposed within vertical coolant channels ln the moderator symmetrically arranged as a regular lattice in groups. This reactor employs control rods which operate in vertical channels in the moderator so that each control rod is centered in one of the fuel element groups. The reactor is enclosed in a pressure vessel which ls provided with access holes at the top to facilitate loading and unloadlng of the fuel elements, control rods and control rod driving devices.

  9. FUEL ELEMENT FOR NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Bassett, C.H.

    1961-05-01

    A nuclear reactor fuel element comprising high density ceramic fissionable material enclosed in a tubular cladding of corrosion-resistant material is described. The fissionable material is in the form of segments of a tube which have cooperating tapered interfaces which produce outward radial displacement when the segments are urged axially together. A resilient means is provided within the tubular housing to constantly urge the fuel segments axially. This design maintains the fuel material in tight contacting engagement against the inner surface of the outer cladding tube to eliminate any gap therebetween which may be caused by differential thermal expansion between the fuel material and the material of the tube.

  10. NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Breden, C.R.; Dietrich, J.R.

    1961-06-20

    A water-soluble non-volatile poison may be introduced into a reactor to nullify excess reactivity. The poison is removed by passing a side stream of the water containing the soluble poison to an evaporation chamber. The vapor phase is returned to the reactor to decrease the concentration of soluble poison and the liquid phase is returned to increase the concentration of soluble poison.

  11. Fission product release from TRIGA-LEU reactor fuels

    SciTech Connect

    Baldwin, N.L.; Foushee, F.C.; Greenwood, J.S

    1980-07-01

    Due to present international concerns over nuclear proliferation, TRIGA reactor fuels will utilize only low-enriched uranium (LEU) (enrichment <20%). This requires increased total uranium loading per unit volume of fuel in order to maintain the appropriate fissile loading. Tests were conducted to determine the fractional release of gaseous and metallic fission products from typical uranium-zirconium hydride TRIGA fuels containing up to 45 wt-% uranium. These tests, performed in late 1977 and early 1978, were similar to those conducted earlier on TRIGA fuels with 8.5 wt-% U. Fission gas release measurements were made on prototypic specimens from room temperature to 1100 deg. C in the TRIGA King Furnace Facility. The fuel specimens were irradiated in the TRIGA reactor at a low power level. The fractional releases of the gaseous nuclides of krypton and xenon were measured under steady-state operating conditions. Clean helium was used to sweep the fission gases released during irradiation from the furnace into a standard gas collection trap for gamma counting. The results of these tests on TRIGA-LEU fuel agree well with data from the similar, earlier tests on TRIGA fuel. The correlation used to calculate the release of fission products from 8.5 wt-% U TRIGA fuel applies equally well for U contents up to 45 wt-%. (author)

  12. Nuclear reactors and the nuclear fuel cycle

    SciTech Connect

    Pearlman, H

    1989-11-01

    According to the author, the first sustained nuclear fission chain reaction was not at the University of Chicago, but at the Oklo site in the African country of Gabon. Proof of this phenomenon is provided by mass spectrometric and analytical chemical measurements by French scientists. The U.S. experience in developing power-producing reactors and their related fuel and fuel cycles is discussed.

  13. Control system for a small fission reactor

    DOEpatents

    Burelbach, James P.; Kann, William J.; Saiveau, James G.

    1986-01-01

    A system for controlling the reactivity of a small fission reactor includes an elongated, flexible hollow tube in the general form of a helical coiled spring axially positioned around and outside of the reactor vessel in an annular space between the reactor vessel and a surrounding cylindrical-shaped neutron reflector. A neutron absorbing material is provided within the hollow tube with the rate of the reaction controlled by the extension and compression of the hollow tube, e.g., extension of the tube increases reactivity while its compression reduces reactivity, in varying the amount of neutron absorbing material disposed between the reactor vessel and the neutron reflector. Conventional mechanical displacement means may be employed to control the coil density of the hollow tube as desired. In another embodiment, a plurality of flexible hollow tubes each containing a neutron absorber are positioned adjacent to one another in spaced relation around the periphery of the reactor vessel and inside the outer neutron reflector with reactivity controlled by the extension and compression of all or some of the coiled hollow tubes. Yet another embodiment of the invention envisions the neutron reflector in the form of an expandable coil spring positioned in an annular space between the reactor vessel and an outer neutron absorbing structure for controlling the neutron flux reflected back into the reactor vessel.

  14. FUEL ELEMENT FOR NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Bassett, C.H.

    1961-05-16

    A fuel element particularly adapted for use in nuclear reactors of high power density is offered. It has fissionable fuel pellet segments mounted in a tubular housing and defining a central passage in the fuel element. A burnable poison element extends through the central passage, which is designed to contain more poison material at the median portion than at the end portions thereby providing a more uniform hurnup and longer reactivity life.

  15. NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Koch, L.J.; Rice, R.E. Jr.; Denst, A.A.; Rogers, A.J.; Novick, M.

    1961-12-01

    An active portion assembly for a fast neutron reactor is described wherein physical distortions resulting in adverse changes in the volume-to-mass ratio are minimized. A radially expandable locking device is disposed within a cylindrical tube within each fuel subassembly within the active portion assembly, and clamping devices expandable toward the center of the active portion assembly are disposed around the periphery thereof. (AEC)

  16. Method of fission product beta spectra measurements for predicting reactor anti-neutrino emission

    SciTech Connect

    Asner, David M.; Burns, Kimberly A.; Campbell, Luke W.; Greenfield, Bryce A.; Kos, Marek S.; Orrell, John L.; Schram, Malachi; VanDevender, Brent A.; Wood, Lynn S.; Wootan, David W.

    2015-03-01

    The nuclear fission process that occurs in the core of nuclear reactors results in unstable, neutron-rich fission products that subsequently beta decay and emit electron antineutrinos. These reactor neutrinos have served neutrino physics research from the initial discovery of the neutrino to today's precision measurements of neutrino mixing angles. The prediction of the absolute flux and energy spectrum of the emitted reactor neutrinos hinges upon a series of seminal papers based on measurements performed in the 1970s and 1980s. The steadily improving reactor neutrino measurement techniques and recent reconsiderations of the agreement between the predicted and observed reactor neutrino flux motivates revisiting the underlying beta spectra measurements. A method is proposed to use an accelerator proton beam delivered to an engineered target to yield a neutron field tailored to reproduce the neutron energy spectrum present in the core of an operating nuclear reactor. Foils of the primary reactor fissionable isotopes placed in this tailored neutron flux will ultimately emit beta particles from the resultant fission products. Measurement of these beta particles in a time projection chamber with a perpendicular magnetic field provides a distinctive set of systematic considerations for comparison to the original seminal beta spectra measurements. Ancillary measurements such as gamma-ray emission and post-irradiation radiochemical analysis will further constrain the absolute normalization of beta emissions per fission. The requirements for unfolding the beta spectra measured with this method into a predicted reactor neutrino spectrum are explored.

  17. Nuclear reactors for space power

    SciTech Connect

    Buden, D.

    1985-02-01

    The growth in power demands for spacecraft, especially outer planet missions, is driving the development of space nuclear power systems. Nuclear reactors could also be used to process lunar materials to take advantage of order of magnitude lower fuel requirements to move construction components off the moon instead of the earth. Larger, more powerful broadcast satellites which lower the GEO station space demand could use nuclear power, as could navigational systems, orbital transfer vehicles and a manned Mars mission. The SP-100 design is currently undergoing parametric evaluation before engineering studies begin. Safety concerns are concentrated on preventing fissioning until the reactor is on-orbit and keeping the active or discarded reactor out of the atmosphere until the radioactivity has decayed to levels defined by international standards.

  18. Introducing Nuclear Data Evaluations of Prompt Fission Neutron Spectra

    SciTech Connect

    Neudecker, Denise

    2015-06-17

    Nuclear data evaluations provide recommended data sets for nuclear data applications such as reactor physics, stockpile stewardship or nuclear medicine. The evaluated data are often based on information from multiple experimental data sets and nuclear theory using statistical methods. Therefore, they are collaborative efforts of evaluators, theoreticians, experimentalists, benchmark experts, statisticians and application area scientists. In this talk, an introductions is given to the field of nuclear data evaluation at the specific example of a recent evaluation of the outgoing neutron energy spectrum emitted promptly after fission from 239Pu and induced by neutrons from thermal to 30 MeV.

  19. Developments and Tendencies in Fission Reactor Concepts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adamov, E. O.; Fuji-Ie, Y.

    This chapter describes, in two parts, new-generation nuclear energy systems that are required to be in harmony with nature and to make full use of nuclear resources. The issues of transmutation and containment of radioactive waste will also be addressed. After a short introduction to the first part, Sect. 58.1.2 will detail the requirements these systems must satisfy on the basic premise of peaceful use of nuclear energy. The expected designs themselves are described in Sect. 58.1.3. The subsequent sections discuss various types of advanced reactor systems. Section 58.1.4 deals with the light water reactor (LWR) whose performance is still expected to improve, which would extend its application in the future. The supercritical-water-cooled reactor (SCWR) will also be shortly discussed. Section 58.1.5 is mainly on the high temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTGR), which offers efficient and multipurpose use of nuclear energy. The gas-cooled fast reactor (GFR) is also included. Section 58.1.6 focuses on the sodium-cooled fast reactor (SFR) as a promising concept for advanced nuclear reactors, which may help both to achieve expansion of energy sources and environmental protection thus contributing to the sustainable development of mankind. The molten-salt reactor (MSR) is shortly described in Sect. 58.1.7. The second part of the chapter deals with reactor systems of a new generation, which are now found at the research and development (R&D) stage and in the medium term of 20-30 years can shape up as reliable, economically efficient, and environmentally friendly energy sources. They are viewed as technologies of cardinal importance, capable of resolving the problems of fuel resources, minimizing the quantities of generated radioactive waste and the environmental impacts, and strengthening the regime of nonproliferation of the materials suitable for nuclear weapons production. Particular attention has been given to naturally safe fast reactors with a closed fuel cycle (CFC

  20. NUCLEAR REACTOR CONTROL SYSTEM

    DOEpatents

    Epler, E.P.; Hanauer, S.H.; Oakes, L.C.

    1959-11-01

    A control system is described for a nuclear reactor using enriched uranium fuel of the type of the swimming pool and other heterogeneous nuclear reactors. Circuits are included for automatically removing and inserting the control rods during the course of normal operation. Appropriate safety circuits close down the nuclear reactor in the event of emergency.

  1. Fission product release from nuclear fuel by recoil and knockout

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lewis, B. J.

    1987-03-01

    An analytical model has been developed to describe the fission product release from nuclear fuel arising from the surface-fission release mechanisms of recoil and knockout. Release expressions are evaluated and compared to the short-lived activity measurements from in-reactor experiments with intact operating fuel. Recoil is shown to be an important process for releasing fission products from free UO 2 surfaces into the fuel-to-sheath gap. The model is also applied to tramp uranium in a power reactor primary heat transport circuit where it is demonstrated that recoil is the dominant release mechanism for small particles of fuel which are deposited on in-core surfaces. A methodology is established whereby release from surface contamination can be distinguished from that of fuel pin failure.

  2. Nuclear propulsion apparatus with alternate reactor segments

    DOEpatents

    Szekely, Thomas

    1979-04-03

    1. Nuclear propulsion apparatus comprising: A. means for compressing incoming air; B. nuclear fission reactor means for heating said air; C. means for expanding a portion of the heated air to drive said compressing means; D. said nuclear fission reactor means being divided into a plurality of radially extending segments; E. means for directing a portion of the compressed air for heating through alternate segments of said reactor means and another portion of the compressed air for heating through the remaining segments of said reactor means; and F. means for further expanding the heated air from said drive means and the remaining heated air from said reactor means through nozzle means to effect reactive thrust on said apparatus.

  3. Reactors for nuclear electric propulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Buden, D.; Angelo, J.A. Jr.

    1981-01-01

    Propulsion is the key to space exploitation and power is the key to propulsion. This paper examines the role of nuclear fission reactors as the primary power source for high specific impulse electric propulsion systems for space missions of the 1980s and 1990s. Particular mission applications include transfer to and a reusable orbital transfer vehicle from low-Earth orbit to geosynchronous orbit, outer planet exploration and reconnaissance missions, and as a versatile space tug supporting lunar resource development. Nuclear electric propulsion is examined as an indispensable component in space activities of the next two decades.

  4. A proposed standard on medical isotope production in fission reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Schenter, R. E.; Brown, G. J.; Holden, C. S.

    2006-07-01

    Authors Robert E. Sehenter, Garry Brown and Charles S. Holden argue that a Standard for 'Medical Isotope Production' is needed. Medical isotopes are becoming major components of application for the diagnosis and treatment of all the major diseases including all forms of cancer, heart disease, arthritis, Alzheimer's, among others. Current nuclear data to perform calculations is incomplete, dated or imprecise or otherwise flawed for many isotopes that could have significant applications in medicine. Improved data files will assist computational analyses to design means and methods for improved isotope production techniques in the fission reactor systems. Initial focus of the Standard is expected to be on neutron cross section and branching data for both fast and thermal reactor systems. Evaluated and reviewed tables giving thermal capture cross sections and resonance integrals for the major target and product medical isotopes would be the expected 'first start' for the 'Standard Working Group'. (authors)

  5. NUCLEAR REACTOR FUEL ELEMENT

    DOEpatents

    Currier, E.L. Jr.; Nicklas, J.H.

    1963-06-11

    A fuel plate is designed for incorporation into control rods of the type utilized in high-flux test reactors. The fuel plate is designed so that the portion nearest the poison section of the control rod contains about one-half as much fissionable material as in the rest of the plate, thereby eliminating dangerous flux peaking in that portion. (AEC)

  6. Analysis of fission-product effects in a Fast Mixed-Spectrum Reactor concept

    SciTech Connect

    White, J.R.; Burns, T.J.

    1980-02-01

    The Fast Mixed-Spectrum Reactor (FMSR) concept has been proposed by BNL as a means of alleviating certain nonproliferation concerns relating to civilian nuclear power. This breeder reactor concept has been tailored to operate on natural uranium feed (after initial startup), thus eliminating the need for fuel reprocessing. The fissile material required for criticality is produced, in situ, from the fertile feed material. This process requires that large burnup and fluence levels be achievable, which, in turn, necessarily implies that large fission-product inventories will exist in the reactor. It was the purpose of this study to investigate the effects of large fission-product inventories and to analyze the effect of burnup on fission-product nuclide distributions and effective cross sections. In addition, BNL requested that a representative 50-group fission-product library be generated for use in FMSR design calculations.

  7. Fifty years of nuclear fission: Nuclear data and measurements series

    SciTech Connect

    Lynn, J.E.

    1989-06-01

    This report is the written version of a colloquium first presented at Argonne National Laboratory in January 1989. The paper begins with an historical preamble about the events leading to the discovery of nuclear fission. This leads naturally to an account of early results and understanding of the fission phenomena. Some of the key concepts in the development of fission theory are then discussed. The main theme of this discussion is the topography of the fission barrier, in which the interplay of the liquid-drop model and nucleon shell effects lead to a wide range of fascinating phenomena encompassing metastable isomers, intermediate-structure effects in fission cross-sections, and large changes in fission product properties. It is shown how study of these changing effects and theoretical calculations of the potential energy of the deformed nucleus have led to broad qualitative understanding of the nature of the fission process. 54 refs., 35 figs.

  8. Microscopic description of complex nuclear decay: Multimodal fission

    SciTech Connect

    Staszczak, A.; Baran, A.; Dobaczewski, J.; Nazarewicz, W.

    2009-07-15

    Our understanding of nuclear fission, a fundamental nuclear decay, is still incomplete due to the complexity of the process. In this paper, we describe a study of spontaneous fission using the symmetry-unrestricted nuclear density functional theory. Our results show that the observed bimodal fission can be explained in terms of pathways in multidimensional collective space corresponding to different geometries of fission products. We also predict a new phenomenon of trimodal spontaneous fission for some rutherfordium, seaborgium, and hassium isotopes.

  9. Microscopic description of complex nuclear decay: Multimodal fission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Staszczak, A.; Baran, A.; Dobaczewski, J.; Nazarewicz, W.

    2009-07-01

    Our understanding of nuclear fission, a fundamental nuclear decay, is still incomplete due to the complexity of the process. In this paper, we describe a study of spontaneous fission using the symmetry-unrestricted nuclear density functional theory. Our results show that the observed bimodal fission can be explained in terms of pathways in multidimensional collective space corresponding to different geometries of fission products. We also predict a new phenomenon of trimodal spontaneous fission for some rutherfordium, seaborgium, and hassium isotopes.

  10. Catalog of experimental projects for a fissioning plasma reactor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lanzo, C. D.

    1973-01-01

    Experimental and theoretical investigations were carried out to determine the feasibility of using a small scale fissioning uranium plasma as the power source in a driver reactor. The driver system is a light water cooled and moderated reactor of the MTR type. The eight experiments and proposed configurations for the reactor are outlined.

  11. Neutron flux profile monitor for use in a fission reactor

    DOEpatents

    Kopp, Manfred K.; Valentine, Kenneth H.

    1983-01-01

    A neutron flux monitor is provided which consists of a plurality of fission counters arranged as spaced-apart point detectors along a delay line. As a fission event occurs in any one of the counters, two delayed current pulses are generated at the output of the delay line. The time separation of the pulses identifies the counter in which the particular fission event occured. Neutron flux profiles of reactor cores can be more accurately measured as a result.

  12. Research on fission fragment excitation of gases and nuclear pumping of lasers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schneider, R. T.; Davie, R. N.; Davis, J. F.; Fuller, J. L.; Paternoster, R. R.; Shipman, G. R.; Sterritt, D. E.; Helmick, H. H.

    1974-01-01

    Experimental investigations of fission fragment excited gases are reported along with a theoretical analysis of population inversions in fission fragment excited helium. Other studies reported include: nuclear augmentation of gas lasers, direct nuclear pumping of a helium-xenon laser, measurements of a repetitively pulsed high-power CO2 laser, thermodynamic properties of UF6 and UF6/He mixtures, and nuclear waste disposal utilizing a gaseous core reactor.

  13. NUCLEAR REACTOR FUEL-BREEDER FUEL ELEMENT

    DOEpatents

    Currier, E.L. Jr.; Nicklas, J.H.

    1962-08-14

    A fuel-breeder fuel element was developed for a nuclear reactor wherein discrete particles of fissionable material are dispersed in a matrix of fertile breeder material. The fuel element combines the advantages of a dispersion type and a breeder-type. (AEC)

  14. Energy from nuclear fission()

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ripani, M.

    2015-08-01

    The main features of nuclear fission as physical phenomenon will be revisited, emphasizing its peculiarities with respect to other nuclear reactions. Some basic concepts underlying the operation of nuclear reactors and the main types of reactors will be illustrated, including fast reactors, showing the most important differences among them. The nuclear cycle and radioactive-nuclear-waste production will be also discussed, along with the perspectives offered by next generation nuclear assemblies being proposed. The current situation of nuclear power in the world, its role in reducing carbon emission and the available resources will be briefly illustrated.

  15. Uncertainties in the anti-neutrino production at nuclear reactors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Djurcic, Z.; Detwiler, J. A.; Piepke, A.; Foster, V. R.; Miller, L.; Gratta, G.

    2009-04-01

    Anti-neutrino emission rates from nuclear reactors are determined from thermal power measurements and fission rate calculations. The uncertainties in these quantities for commercial power plants and their impact on the calculated interaction rates in \\bar{\

  16. Complete event simulations of nuclear fission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vogt, Ramona

    2015-10-01

    For many years, the state of the art for treating fission in radiation transport codes has involved sampling from average distributions. In these average fission models energy is not explicitly conserved and everything is uncorrelated because all particles are emitted independently. However, in a true fission event, the energies, momenta and multiplicities of the emitted particles are correlated. Such correlations are interesting for many modern applications. Event-by-event generation of complete fission events makes it possible to retain the kinematic information for all particles emitted: the fission products as well as prompt neutrons and photons. It is therefore possible to extract any desired correlation observables. Complete event simulations can be included in general Monte Carlo transport codes. We describe the general functionality of currently available fission event generators and compare results for several important observables. This work was performed under the auspices of the US DOE by LLNL, Contract DE-AC52-07NA27344. We acknowledge support of the Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation Research and Development in DOE/NNSA.

  17. Uncertainty analysis of fission fraction for reactor antineutrino experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ma, X. B.; Lu, F.; Wang, L. Z.; Chen, Y. X.; Zhong, W. L.; An, F. P.

    2016-06-01

    Reactor simulation is an important source of uncertainties for a reactor neutrino experiment. Therefore, how to evaluate the antineutrino flux uncertainty results from reactor simulation is an important question. In this study, a method of the antineutrino flux uncertainty result from reactor simulation was proposed by considering the correlation coefficient. In order to use this method in the Daya Bay antineutrino experiment, the open source code DRAGON was improved and used for obtaining the fission fraction and correlation coefficient. The average fission fraction between DRAGON and SCIENCE code was compared and the difference was less than 5% for all the four isotopes. The uncertainty of fission fraction was evaluated by comparing simulation atomic density of four main isotopes with Takahama-3 experiment measurement. After that, the uncertainty of the antineutrino flux results from reactor simulation was evaluated as 0.6% per core for Daya Bay antineutrino experiment.

  18. Nuclear reactor overflow line

    DOEpatents

    Severson, Wayne J.

    1976-01-01

    The overflow line for the reactor vessel of a liquid-metal-cooled nuclear reactor includes means for establishing and maintaining a continuous bleed flow of coolant amounting to 5 to 10% of the total coolant flow through the overflow line to prevent thermal shock to the overflow line when the reactor is restarted following a trip. Preferably a tube is disposed concentrically just inside the overflow line extending from a point just inside the reactor vessel to an overflow tank and a suction line is provided opening into the body of liquid metal in the reactor vessel and into the annulus between the overflow line and the inner tube.

  19. Nuclear reactor apparatus

    DOEpatents

    Wade, Elman E.

    1978-01-01

    A lifting, rotating and sealing apparatus for nuclear reactors utilizing rotating plugs above the nuclear reactor core. This apparatus permits rotation of the plugs to provide under the plug refueling of a nuclear core. It also provides a means by which positive top core holddown can be utilized. Both of these operations are accomplished by means of the apparatus lifting the top core holddown structure off the nuclear core while stationary, and maintaining this structure in its elevated position during plug rotation. During both of these operations, the interface between the rotating member and its supporting member is sealingly maintained.

  20. Reference reactor module for NASA's lunar surface fission power system

    SciTech Connect

    Poston, David I; Kapernick, Richard J; Dixon, David D; Werner, James; Qualls, Louis; Radel, Ross

    2009-01-01

    Surface fission power systems on the Moon and Mars may provide the first US application of fission reactor technology in space since 1965. The Affordable Fission Surface Power System (AFSPS) study was completed by NASA/DOE to determine the cost of a modest performance, low-technical risk surface power system. The AFSPS concept is now being further developed within the Fission Surface Power (FSP) Project, which is a near-term technology program to demonstrate system-level TRL-6 by 2013. This paper describes the reference FSP reactor module concept, which is designed to provide a net power of 40 kWe for 8 years on the lunar surface; note, the system has been designed with technologies that are fully compatible with a Martian surface application. The reactor concept uses stainless-steel based. UO{sub 2}-fueled, pumped-NaK fission reactor coupled to free-piston Stirling converters. The reactor shielding approach utilizes both in-situ and launched shielding to keep the dose to astronauts much lower than the natural background radiation on the lunar surface. The ultimate goal of this work is to provide a 'workhorse' power system that NASA can utilize in near-term and future Lunar and Martian mission architectures, with the eventual capability to evolve to very high power, low mass systems, for either surface, deep space, and/or orbital missions.

  1. Fission cross-sections, prompt fission neutron and γ-ray emission in request for nuclear applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hambsch, F.-J.; Salvador-Castiñeira, P.; Oberstedt, S.; Göök, A.; Billnert, R.

    2016-06-01

    In recent years JRC-IRMM has been investigating fission cross-sections of 240,242Pu in the fast-neutron energy range relevant for innovative reactor systems and requested in the High Priority Request List (HPRL) of the OECD/Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA). In addition to that, prompt neutron multiplicities are being investigated for the major isotopes 235U, 239Pu in the neutron-resonance region using a newly developed scintillation detector array (SCINTIA) and an innovative modification of the Frisch-grid ionisation chamber for fission-fragment detection. These data are highly relevant for improved neutron data evaluation and requested by the OECD/Working Party on Evaluation Cooperation (WPEC). Thirdly, also prompt fission γ-ray emission is investigated using highly efficient lanthanide-halide detectors with superior timing resolution. Again, those data are requested in the HPRL for major actinides to solve open questions on an under-prediction of decay heat in nuclear reactors. The information on prompt fission neutron and γ-ray emission is crucial for benchmarking nuclear models to study the de-excitation process of neutron-rich fission fragments. Information on γ-ray emission probabilities is also useful in decommissioning exercises on damaged nuclear power plants like Fukushima Daiichi to which JRC-IRMM is contributing. The results on the 240,242Pu fission cross section, 235U prompt neutron multiplicity in the resonance region and correlations with fission fragments and prompt γ-ray emission for several isotopes will be presented and put into perspective.

  2. Nuclear fission: the interplay of science and technology.

    PubMed

    Stoneham, A M

    2010-07-28

    When the UK's Calder Hall nuclear power station was connected to the grid in 1956, the programmes that made this possible involved a powerful combination of basic and applied research. Both the science and the engineering were novel, addressing new and challenging problems. That the last Calder Hall reactor was shut down only in 2003 attests to the success of the work. The strengths of bringing basic science to bear on applications continued to be recognized until the 1980s, when government and management fashions changed. This paper identifies a few of the technology challenges, and shows how novel basic science emerged from them and proved essential in their resolution. Today, as the threat of climate change becomes accepted, it has become clear that there is no credible solution without nuclear energy. The design and construction of new fission reactors will need continuing innovation, with the interplay between the science and technology being a crucial component. PMID:20566512

  3. HOMOGENEOUS NUCLEAR POWER REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    King, L.D.P.

    1959-09-01

    A homogeneous nuclear power reactor utilizing forced circulation of the liquid fuel is described. The reactor does not require fuel handling outside of the reactor vessel during any normal operation including complete shutdown to room temperature, the reactor being selfregulating under extreme operating conditions and controlled by the thermal expansion of the liquid fuel. The liquid fuel utilized is a uranium, phosphoric acid, and water solution which requires no gus exhaust system or independent gas recombining system, thereby eliminating the handling of radioiytic gas.

  4. Structure of matter, radioactivity, and nuclear fission. Volume 3

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1986-01-01

    Subject matter includes structure of matter (what is matter, forces holding atoms together, visualizing the atom, the chemical elements, atomic symbols, isotopes, radiation from the atom), radioactivity (what holds the nucleus together, can one element change into another element, radiation from the nucleus, half-life, chart of the nuclides), and nuclear fission (nuclear energy release, the fission process, where does fission energy go, radiation and radioactivity resulting from fission).

  5. Reference Reactor Module for the Affordable Fission Surface Power System

    SciTech Connect

    Poston, David I.; Kapernick, Richard J.; Dixon, David D.; Amiri, Benjamin W.; Marcille, Thomas F.

    2008-01-21

    Surface fission power systems on the Moon and Mars may provide the first US application of fission reactor technology in space since 1965. The requirements of many surface power applications allow the consideration of systems with much less development risk than most other space reactor applications, because of modest power (10s of kWe) and no driving need for minimal mass (allowing temperatures <1000 K). The Affordable Fission Surface Power System (AFSPS) study was completed by NASA/DOE to determine the cost of a modest performance, low-technical risk surface power system. This paper describes the reference AFSPS reactor module concept, which is designed to provide a net power of 40 kWe for 8 years on the lunar surface; note, the system has been designed with technologies that are fully compatible with a Martian surface application. The reactor concept uses stainless-steel based, UO{sub 2}-fueled, liquid metal-cooled fission reactor coupled to free-piston Stirling converters. The reactor shielding approach utilizes both in-situ and launched shielding to keep the dose to astronauts much lower than the natural background radiation on the lunar surface. One of the important 'affordability' attributes is that the concept has been designed to minimize both the technical and programmatic safety risk.

  6. NUCLEAR REACTOR FUEL ELEMENT

    DOEpatents

    Anderson, W.F.; Tellefson, D.R.; Shimazaki, T.T.

    1962-04-10

    A plate type fuel element which is particularly useful for organic cooled reactors is described. Generally, the fuel element comprises a plurality of fissionable fuel bearing plates held in spaced relationship by a frame in which the plates are slidably mounted in grooves. Clearance is provided in the grooves to allow the plates to expand laterally. The plates may be rigidly interconnected but are floatingly supported at their ends within the frame to allow for longi-tudinal expansion. Thus, this fuel element is able to withstand large temperature differentials without great structural stresses. (AEC)

  7. Dynamical Safety Analysis of the SABR Fusion-Fission Hybrid Reactor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sumner, Tyler; Stacey, Weston; Ghiaassian, Seyed

    2009-11-01

    A hybrid fusion-fission reactor for the transmutation of spent nuclear fuel is being developed at Georgia Tech. The Subcritical Advanced Burner Reactor (SABR) is a 3000 MWth sodium-cooled, metal TRU-Zr fueled fast reactor driven by a tokamak fusion neutron source based on ITER physics and technology. We are investigating the accident dynamics of SABR's coupled fission, fusion and heat removal systems to explore the safety characteristics of a hybrid reactor. Possible accident scenarios such as loss of coolant mass flow (LOFA), of power (LOPA) and of heat sink (LOHSA), as well as inadvertent reactivity insertions and fusion source excursion are being analyzed using the RELAP5-3D code, the ATHENA version of which includes liquid metal coolants.

  8. A comparison of radioactive waste from first generation fusion reactors and fast fission reactors with actinide recycling

    SciTech Connect

    Koch, M.; Kazimi, M.S.

    1991-04-01

    Limitations of the fission fuel resources will presumably mandate the replacement of thermal fission reactors by fast fission reactors that operate on a self-sufficient closed fuel cycle. This replacement might take place within the next one hundred years, so the direct competitors of fusion reactors will be fission reactors of the latter rather than the former type. Also, fast fission reactors, in contrast to thermal fission reactors, have the potential for transmuting long-lived actinides into short-lived fission products. The associated reduction of the long-term activation of radioactive waste due to actinides makes the comparison of radioactive waste from fast fission reactors to that from fusion reactors more rewarding than the comparison of radioactive waste from thermal fission reactors to that from fusion reactors. Radioactive waste from an experimental and a commercial fast fission reactor and an experimental and a commercial fusion reactor has been characterized. The fast fission reactors chosen for this study were the Experimental Breeder Reactor 2 and the Integral Fast Reactor. The fusion reactors chosen for this study were the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor and a Reduced Activation Ferrite Helium Tokamak. The comparison of radioactive waste parameters shows that radioactive waste from the experimental fast fission reactor may be less hazardous than that from the experimental fusion reactor. Inclusion of the actinides would reverse this conclusion only in the long-term. Radioactive waste from the commercial fusion reactor may always be less hazardous than that from the commercial fast fission reactor, irrespective of the inclusion or exclusion of the actinides. The fusion waste would even be far less hazardous, if advanced structural materials, like silicon carbide or vanadium alloy, were employed.

  9. Fission energy program of the US Department of Energy, FY 1981

    SciTech Connect

    Ferguson, Robert L.

    1980-03-01

    Information is presented concerning the National Energy Plan and fission energy policy; fission energy program management; converter reactor systems; breeder reactor systems; and special nuclear evaluations and systems.

  10. Fission product retention in newly discovered organic-rich natural fission reactors at Oklo and Bangombe, Gabon

    SciTech Connect

    Nagy, B.; Rigali, M.J. )

    1993-01-01

    The discovery of naturally occurring fission reactors in the rock strata of the Paleoproterozoic Francevillian Basin in the Republic of Gabon in equatorial West Africa led to several programs to define migration and/or retention of uranium and fissiogenic isotopes from/in the natural reactor zones. Although much understanding has been gained, new insight is needed regarding the chemical and physical parameters that control movement and retention of fission products over almost two billion years from/in the natural reactors. Seventeen known natural fission reactors sustained criticality for 0.1 to 1 million years in hydrothermally altered sedimentary rocks 1968 +/- 50 million years ago. These natural nuclear reactors attained criticality because of high concentrations of uranium in small pockets in uranium ores, the lack of neutron poisons, and because at the time they reached criticality, the abundance of [sup 235]U was five times greater than it is today. Water acted as a moderator, and temperature in the natural reactors was between 160 and 360[degrees]C. Both the uranium-rich pockets and the uranium ore bodies in which these pockets are located were formed when aqueous solutions moving through highly fractured zones in the Francevillian sedimentary rocks met organic-rich sediments. This resulted in the reduction of U(VI) in the dissolved uranyl ions to U(IV), causing the precipitation of pitchblende and uraninite. It has been proposed that between 2.2 and 1.9 billion years ago, the earth's atmosphere experienced a remarkable temporary rise in O[sub 2] content; this event may account for the uranium-bearing, oxidizing aqueous solutions in the Francevillian rocks.

  11. Molten salt considerations for accelerator-driven subcritical fission to close the nuclear fuel cycle

    SciTech Connect

    Sooby, Elizabeth; Baty, Austin; Gerity, James; McIntyre, Peter; Melconian, Karie; Pogue, Nathaniel; Sattarov, Akhdiyor; Adams, Marvin; Tsevkov, Pavel; Phongikaroon, Supathorn; Simpson, Michael; Tripathy, Prabhat

    2013-04-19

    The host salt selection, molecular modeling, physical chemistry, and processing chemistry are presented here for an accelerator-driven subcritical fission in a molten salt core (ADSMS). The core is fueled solely with the transuranics (TRU) and long-lived fission products (LFP) from used nuclear fuel. The neutronics and salt composition are optimized to destroy the transuranics by fission and the long-lived fission products by transmutation. The cores are driven by proton beams from a strong-focusing cyclotron stack. One such ADSMS system can destroy the transuranics in the used nuclear fuel produced by a 1GWe conventional reactor. It uniquely provides a method to close the nuclear fuel cycle for green nuclear energy.

  12. Nuclear reactor control

    SciTech Connect

    Ingham, R.V.

    1980-01-01

    A liquid metal cooled fast breeder nuclear reactor has power setback means for use in an emergency. On initiation of a trip-signal a control rod is injected into the core in two stages, firstly, by free fall to effect an immediate power-set back to a safe level and, secondly, by controlled insertion. Total shut-down of the reactor under all emergencies is avoided. 4 claims.

  13. Relative fission product yield determination in the USGS TRIGA Mark I reactor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koehl, Michael A.

    Fission product yield data sets are one of the most important and fundamental compilations of basic information in the nuclear industry. This data has a wide range of applications which include nuclear fuel burnup and nonproliferation safeguards. Relative fission yields constitute a major fraction of the reported yield data and reduce the number of required absolute measurements. Radiochemical separations of fission products reduce interferences, facilitate the measurement of low level radionuclides, and are instrumental in the analysis of low-yielding symmetrical fission products. It is especially useful in the measurement of the valley nuclides and those on the extreme wings of the mass yield curve, including lanthanides, where absolute yields have high errors. This overall project was conducted in three stages: characterization of the neutron flux in irradiation positions within the U.S. Geological Survey TRIGA Mark I Reactor (GSTR), determining the mass attenuation coefficients of precipitates used in radiochemical separations, and measuring the relative fission products in the GSTR. Using the Westcott convention, the Westcott flux, modified spectral index, neutron temperature, and gold-based cadmium ratios were determined for various sampling positions in the USGS TRIGA Mark I reactor. The differential neutron energy spectrum measurement was obtained using the computer iterative code SAND-II-SNL. The mass attenuation coefficients for molecular precipitates were determined through experiment and compared to results using the EGS5 Monte Carlo computer code. Difficulties associated with sufficient production of fission product isotopes in research reactors limits the ability to complete a direct, experimental assessment of mass attenuation coefficients for these isotopes. Experimental attenuation coefficients of radioisotopes produced through neutron activation agree well with the EGS5 calculated results. This suggests mass attenuation coefficients of molecular

  14. Nuclear reactor reflector

    DOEpatents

    Hopkins, Ronald J.; Land, John T.; Misvel, Michael C.

    1994-01-01

    A nuclear reactor reflector is disclosed that comprises a stack of reflector blocks with vertical water flow passages to cool the reflector. The interface between blocks is opposite support points for reactor fuel rods. Water flows between the reflector and the reactor barrel from passages in a bottom block. The top block contains a flange to limit this flow and the flange has a slot to receive an alignment pin that is welded to the barrel. The pin is held in the slot by two removable shims. Alignment bars extend the length of the stack in slots machined in each block when the stack is assembled.

  15. Nuclear reactor reflector

    DOEpatents

    Hopkins, R.J.; Land, J.T.; Misvel, M.C.

    1994-06-07

    A nuclear reactor reflector is disclosed that comprises a stack of reflector blocks with vertical water flow passages to cool the reflector. The interface between blocks is opposite support points for reactor fuel rods. Water flows between the reflector and the reactor barrel from passages in a bottom block. The top block contains a flange to limit this flow and the flange has a slot to receive an alignment pin that is welded to the barrel. The pin is held in the slot by two removable shims. Alignment bars extend the length of the stack in slots machined in each block when the stack is assembled. 12 figs.

  16. Nuclear reactor control column

    SciTech Connect

    Bachovchin, D.M.

    1982-08-10

    The nuclear reactor control column comprises a column disposed within the nuclear reactor core having a variable cross-section hollow channel and containing balls whose vertical location is determined by the flow of the reactor coolant through the column. The control column is divided into three basic sections wherein each of the sections has a different cross-sectional area. The uppermost section of the control column has the greatest crosssectional area, the intermediate section of the control column has the smallest cross-sectional area, and the lowermost section of the control column has the intermediate cross-sectional area. In this manner, the area of the uppermost section can be established such that when the reactor coolant is flowing under normal conditions therethrough, the absorber balls will be lifted and suspended in a fluidized bed manner in the upper section. However, when the reactor coolant flow falls below a predetermined value, the absorber balls will fall through the intermediate section and into the lowermost section, thereby reducing the reactivity of the reactor core and shutting down the reactor.

  17. Nuclear reactor control column

    DOEpatents

    Bachovchin, Dennis M.

    1982-01-01

    The nuclear reactor control column comprises a column disposed within the nuclear reactor core having a variable cross-section hollow channel and containing balls whose vertical location is determined by the flow of the reactor coolant through the column. The control column is divided into three basic sections wherein each of the sections has a different cross-sectional area. The uppermost section of the control column has the greatest cross-sectional area, the intermediate section of the control column has the smallest cross-sectional area, and the lowermost section of the control column has the intermediate cross-sectional area. In this manner, the area of the uppermost section can be established such that when the reactor coolant is flowing under normal conditions therethrough, the absorber balls will be lifted and suspended in a fluidized bed manner in the upper section. However, when the reactor coolant flow falls below a predetermined value, the absorber balls will fall through the intermediate section and into the lowermost section, thereby reducing the reactivity of the reactor core and shutting down the reactor.

  18. Uncertainties in the Anti-neutrino Production at Nuclear Reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Djurcic, Zelimir; Detwiler, Jason A.; Piepke, Andreas; Foster Jr., Vince R.; Miller, Lester; Gratta, Giorgio

    2008-08-06

    Anti-neutrino emission rates from nuclear reactors are determined from thermal power measurements and fission rate calculations. The uncertainties in these quantities for commercial power plants and their impact on the calculated interaction rates in {bar {nu}}{sub e} detectors is examined. We discuss reactor-to-reactor correlations between the leading uncertainties, and their relevance to reactor {bar {nu}}{sub e} experiments.

  19. Anomalous Xenon in the Precambrian Nuclear Reactor in Okelobondo (Gabon): A Possible Connection to the Fission Component in the Terrestrial Atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meshik, A. P.; Kehm, K.; Hohenberg, C. M.

    1999-01-01

    Some CFF-Xe (Chemically Fractionated Fission Xenon), whose isotopic composition is established by simultaneous decay and migration of radioactive fission products, is probably present in the Earth's lithosphere, a conclusion based on available Xe data from various crustal and mantle rocks . Our recent isotopic analysis of Xe in alumophosphate from zone 13 of Okelobondo (southern extension of Oklo), along with the independent estimation of the isotopic composition of atmospheric fission Xe , supports the hypothesis that CFF-Xe was produced on a planetary scale. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  20. THERMAL FISSION REACTOR COMPOSITIONS AND METHOD OF FABRICATING SAME

    DOEpatents

    Blainey, A.

    1959-10-01

    A body is presented for use in a thermal fission reactor comprising a sintered compressed mass of a substance of the group consisting of uranium, thorium, and oxides and carbides of uranium and thorium, enclosed in an envelope of a sintered, compacted, heat-conductive material of the group consisting of beryllium, zirconium, and oxides and carbides of beryllium and zirconium.

  1. Fission-suppressed hybrid reactor: the fusion breeder

    SciTech Connect

    Moir, R.W.; Lee, J.D.; Coops, M.S.

    1982-12-01

    Results of a conceptual design study of a /sup 233/U-producing fusion breeder are presented. The majority of the study was devoted to conceptual design and evaluation of a fission-suppressed blanket and to fuel cycle issues such as fuel reprocessing, fuel handling, and fuel management. Studies in the areas of fusion engineering, reactor safety, and economics were also performed.

  2. Nuclear Reactors and Technology

    SciTech Connect

    Cason, D.L.; Hicks, S.C.

    1992-01-01

    This publication Nuclear Reactors and Technology (NRT) announces on a monthly basis the current worldwide information available from the open literature on nuclear reactors and technology, including all aspects of power reactors, components and accessories, fuel elements, control systems, and materials. This publication contains the abstracts of DOE reports, journal articles, conference papers, patents, theses, and monographs added to the Energy Science and Technology Database during the past month. Also included are US information obtained through acquisition programs or interagency agreements and international information obtained through the International Energy Agency`s Energy Technology Data Exchange or government-to-government agreements. The digests in NRT and other citations to information on nuclear reactors back to 1948 are available for online searching and retrieval on the Energy Science and Technology Database and Nuclear Science Abstracts (NSA) database. Current information, added daily to the Energy Science and Technology Database, is available to DOE and its contractors through the DOE Integrated Technical Information System. Customized profiles can be developed to provide current information to meet each user`s needs.

  3. Feasibility study of a fission supressed blanket for a tandem-mirror hybrid reactor

    SciTech Connect

    Moir, R.W.; Lee, J.D.; Barr, W.L.

    1981-10-05

    A study of fission suppressed blankets for the tandem mirror not only showed such blankets to be feasible but also to be safer than fissioning blankets. Such hybrids could produce enough fissile material to support up to 17 light water reactors of the same nuclear power rating. Beryllium was compared to /sup 7/Li for neutron multiplication; both were considered feasible but the blanket with Li produced 20% less fissile fuel per unit of nuclear power in the reactor. The beryllium resource, while possibly being too small for extensive pure fusion application, would be adequate (with carefully planned industrial expansion) for the hybrid because of the large support ratio, and hence few hybrids required. Radiation damage and coatings for beryllium remain issues to be resolved by further study and experimentation.

  4. NUCLEAR REACTOR FUEL ELEMENT

    DOEpatents

    Wheelock, C.W.; Baumeister, E.B.

    1961-09-01

    A reactor fuel element utilizing fissionable fuel materials in plate form is described. This fuel element consists of bundles of fuel-bearing plates. The bundles are stacked inside of a tube which forms the shell of the fuel element. The plates each have longitudinal fins running parallel to the direction of coolant flow, and interspersed among and parallel to the fins are ribs which position the plates relative to each other and to the fuel element shell. The plate bundles are held together by thin bands or wires. The ex tended surface increases the heat transfer capabilities of a fuel element by a factor of 3 or more over those of a simple flat plate.

  5. Nuclear fission and the transuranium elements

    SciTech Connect

    Seaborg, G.T.

    1989-02-01

    Many of the transuranium elements are produced and isolated in large quantities through the use of neutrons furnished by nuclear fission reactions: plutonium (atomic number 94) in ton quantities; neptunium (93), americium (95), and curium (96) in kilogram quantities; berkelium (97) in 100 milligram quantities; californium (98) in gram quantities; and einsteinium (99) in milligram quantities. Transuranium isotopes have found many practical applications---as nuclear fuel for the large-scale generation of electricity, as compact, long-lived power sources for use in space exploration, as means for diagnosis and treatment in the medical area, and as tools in numerous industrial processes. Of particular interest is the unusual chemistry and impact of these heaviest elements on the periodic table. This account will feature these aspects. 9 refs., 5 figs.

  6. THERMAL NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Fenning, F.W.; Jackson, R.F.

    1957-09-24

    Nuclear reactors of the graphite moderated air cooled type in which canned slugs or rods of fissile material are employed are discussed. Such a reactor may be provided with a means for detecting dust particles in the exhausted air. The means employed are lengths of dust absorbent cord suspended in vertical holes in the shielding structure above each vertical coolant flow channel to hang in the path of the cooling air issuing from the channels, and associated spindles and drive motors for hauling the cords past detectors, such as Geiger counters, for inspecting the cords periodically. This design also enables detecting the individual channel in which a fault condition may have occurred.

  7. Heat dissipating nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Hunsbedt, A.; Lazarus, J.D.

    1985-11-21

    Disclosed is a nuclear reactor containment adapted to retain and cool core debris in the unlikely event of a core meltdown and subsequent breach in the reactor vessel. The reactor vessel is seated in a cavity which has a thick metal sidewall that is integral with a thick metal basemat at the bottom of the cavity. The basemat extends beyond the perimeter of the cavity sidewall. Underneath the basemat is a porous bed with water pipes and steam pipes running into it. Water is introduced into the bed and converted into steam which is vented to the atmosphere. A plurality of metal pilings in the form of H-beams extend from the metal base plate downwardly and outwardly into the earth.

  8. Heat dissipating nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Hunsbedt, Anstein; Lazarus, Jonathan D.

    1987-01-01

    Disclosed is a nuclear reactor containment adapted to retain and cool core debris in the unlikely event of a core meltdown and subsequent breach in the reactor vessel. The reactor vessel is seated in a cavity which has a thick metal sidewall that is integral with a thick metal basemat at the bottom of the cavity. The basemat extends beyond the perimeter of the cavity sidewall. Underneath the basemat is a porous bed with water pipes and steam pipes running into it. Water is introduced into the bed and converted into steam which is vented to the atmosphere. A plurality of metal pilings in the form of H-beams extends from the metal base plate downwardly and outwardly into the earth.

  9. Nuclear reactor safety device

    DOEpatents

    Hutter, Ernest

    1986-01-01

    A safety device is disclosed for use in a nuclear reactor for axially repositioning a control rod with respect to the reactor core in the event of an upward thermal excursion. Such safety device comprises a laminated helical ribbon configured as a tube-like helical coil having contiguous helical turns with slidably abutting edges. The helical coil is disclosed as a portion of a drive member connected axially to the control rod. The laminated ribbon is formed of outer and inner laminae. The material of the outer lamina has a greater thermal coefficient of expansion than the material of the inner lamina. In the event of an upward thermal excursion, the laminated helical coil curls inwardly to a smaller diameter. Such inward curling causes the total length of the helical coil to increase by a substantial increment, so that the control rod is axially repositioned by a corresponding amount to reduce the power output of the reactor.

  10. Total Absorption Spectroscopy of Fission Fragments Relevant for Reactor Antineutrino Spectra and Decay Heat Calculations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Porta, A.; Zakari-Issoufou, A.-A.; Fallot, M.; Algora, A.; Tain, J. L.; Valencia, E.; Rice, S.; Bui, V. M.; Cormon, S.; Estienne, M.; Agramunt, J.; Äystö, J.; Bowry, M.; Briz, J. A.; Caballero-Folch, R.; Cano-Ott, D.; Cucouanes, A.; Elomaa, V.-V.; Eronen, T.; Estévez, E.; Farrelly, G. F.; Garcia, A. R.; Gelletly, W.; Gomez-Hornillos, M. B.; Gorlychev, V.; Hakala, J.; Jokinen, A.; Jordan, M. D.; Kankainen, A.; Karvonen, P.; Kolhinen, V. S.; Kondev, F. G.; Martinez, T.; Mendoza, E.; Molina, F.; Moore, I.; Perez-Cerdán, A. B.; Podolyák, Zs.; Penttilä, H.; Regan, P. H.; Reponen, M.; Rissanen, J.; Rubio, B.; Shiba, T.; Sonzogni, A. A.; Weber, C.

    2016-03-01

    Beta decay of fission products is at the origin of decay heat and antineutrino emission in nuclear reactors. Decay heat represents about 7% of the reactor power during operation and strongly impacts reactor safety. Reactor antineutrino detection is used in several fundamental neutrino physics experiments and it can also be used for reactor monitoring and non-proliferation purposes. 92,93Rb are two fission products of importance in reactor antineutrino spectra and decay heat, but their β-decay properties are not well known. New measurements of 92,93Rb β-decay properties have been performed at the IGISOL facility (Jyväskylä, Finland) using Total Absorption Spectroscopy (TAS). TAS is complementary to techniques based on Germanium detectors. It implies the use of a calorimeter to measure the total gamma intensity de-exciting each level in the daughter nucleus providing a direct measurement of the beta feeding. In these proceedings we present preliminary results for 93Rb, our measured beta feedings for 92Rb and we show the impact of these results on reactor antineutrino spectra and decay heat calculations.

  11. Spectral structure of electron antineutrinos from nuclear reactors.

    PubMed

    Dwyer, D A; Langford, T J

    2015-01-01

    Recent measurements of the positron energy spectrum obtained from inverse beta decay interactions of reactor electron antineutrinos show an excess in the 4 to 6 MeV region relative to current predictions. First-principles calculations of fission and beta decay processes within a typical pressurized water reactor core identify prominent fission daughter isotopes as a possible origin for this excess. These calculations also predict percent-level substructures in the antineutrino spectrum due to Coulomb effects in beta decay. Precise measurement of these substructures can elucidate the nuclear processes occurring within reactors. These substructures can be a systematic issue for measurements utilizing the detailed spectral shape. PMID:25615462

  12. The relationship between integral experimental data and nuclear fission parameters

    SciTech Connect

    Poenitz, W.P.

    1989-01-01

    High sensitivities of critical assembly and reactor design parameters to the fission cross sections, prompt and delayed neutron yields, and fission spectra parameters have resulted in an important role of experimental integral data for the testing and verification of differential data and computational methods. The higher accuracy of the experimental integral data compared with the uncertainties of reactor parameters which result from the uncertainties of the differential data has led to their utilization in data adjustment procedures. Improvements of up to a factor of ten are obtained for reactor parameters, however, the uncertainties of the basic data are reduced by smaller amounts. Other integral data like the fission spectra averaged cross sections are used for the evaluation of cross sections and fission spectra. 33 refs., 4 figs., 4 tabs.

  13. Nuclear reactor sealing system

    DOEpatents

    McEdwards, James A.

    1983-01-01

    A liquid metal-cooled nuclear reactor sealing system. The nuclear reactor includes a vessel sealed at its upper end by a closure head. The closure head comprises at least two components, one of which is rotatable; and the two components define an annulus therebetween. The sealing system includes at least a first and second inflatable seal disposed in series in an upper portion of the annulus. The system further includes a dip seal extending into a body of insulation located adjacent a bottom portion of the closure head. The dip seal comprises a trough formed by a lower portion of one of the components, and a seal blade pendently supported from the other component and extending downwardly into the trough. A body of liquid metal is contained in the trough which submerges a portion of the seal blade. The seal blade is provided with at least one aperture located above the body of liquid metal for providing fluid communication between the annulus intermediate the dip seal and the inflatable seals, and a body of cover gas located inside the vessel. There also is provided means for introducing a purge gas into the annulus intermediate the inflatable seals and the seal blade. The purge gas is introduced in an amount sufficient to substantially reduce diffusion of radioactive cover gas or sodium vapor up to the inflatable seals. The purge gas mixes with the cover gas in the reactor vessel where it can be withdrawn from the vessel for treatment and recycle to the vessel.

  14. Nuclear reactor building

    DOEpatents

    Gou, P.F.; Townsend, H.E.; Barbanti, G.

    1994-04-05

    A reactor building for enclosing a nuclear reactor includes a containment vessel having a wetwell disposed therein. The wetwell includes inner and outer walls, a floor, and a roof defining a wetwell pool and a suppression chamber disposed there above. The wetwell and containment vessel define a drywell surrounding the reactor. A plurality of vents are disposed in the wetwell pool in flow communication with the drywell for channeling into the wetwell pool steam released in the drywell from the reactor during a LOCA for example, for condensing the steam. A shell is disposed inside the wetwell and extends into the wetwell pool to define a dry gap devoid of wetwell water and disposed in flow communication with the suppression chamber. In a preferred embodiment, the wetwell roof is in the form of a slab disposed on spaced apart support beams which define there between an auxiliary chamber. The dry gap, and additionally the auxiliary chamber, provide increased volume to the suppression chamber for improving pressure margin. 4 figures.

  15. Nuclear reactor building

    DOEpatents

    Gou, Perng-Fei; Townsend, Harold E.; Barbanti, Giancarlo

    1994-01-01

    A reactor building for enclosing a nuclear reactor includes a containment vessel having a wetwell disposed therein. The wetwell includes inner and outer walls, a floor, and a roof defining a wetwell pool and a suppression chamber disposed thereabove. The wetwell and containment vessel define a drywell surrounding the reactor. A plurality of vents are disposed in the wetwell pool in flow communication with the drywell for channeling into the wetwell pool steam released in the drywell from the reactor during a LOCA for example, for condensing the steam. A shell is disposed inside the wetwell and extends into the wetwell pool to define a dry gap devoid of wetwell water and disposed in flow communication with the suppression chamber. In a preferred embodiment, the wetwell roof is in the form of a slab disposed on spaced apart support beams which define therebetween an auxiliary chamber. The dry gap, and additionally the auxiliary chamber, provide increased volume to the suppression chamber for improving pressure margin.

  16. Nuclear reactor safety device

    DOEpatents

    Hutter, E.

    1983-08-15

    A safety device is described for use in a nuclear reactor for axially repositioning a control rod with respect to the reactor core in the event of a thermal excursion. It comprises a laminated strip helically configured to form a tube, said tube being in operative relation to said control rod. The laminated strip is formed of at least two materials having different thermal coefficients of expansion, and is helically configured such that the material forming the outer lamina of the tube has a greater thermal coefficient of expansion than the material forming the inner lamina of said tube. In the event of a thermal excursion the laminated strip will tend to curl inwardly so that said tube will increase in length, whereby as said tube increases in length it exerts a force on said control rod to axially reposition said control rod with respect to said core.

  17. HOMOGENEOUS NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Hammond, R.P.; Busey, H.M.

    1959-02-17

    Nuclear reactors of the homogeneous liquid fuel type are discussed. The reactor is comprised of an elongated closed vessel, vertically oriented, having a critical region at the bottom, a lower chimney structure extending from the critical region vertically upwardly and surrounded by heat exchanger coils, to a baffle region above which is located an upper chimney structure containing a catalyst functioning to recombine radiolyticallydissociated moderator gages. In operation the liquid fuel circulates solely by convection from the critical region upwardly through the lower chimney and then downwardly through the heat exchanger to return to the critical region. The gases formed by radiolytic- dissociation of the moderator are carried upwardly with the circulating liquid fuel and past the baffle into the region of the upper chimney where they are recombined by the catalyst and condensed, thence returning through the heat exchanger to the critical region.

  18. Nuclear Reactor Kinetics and Control.

    SciTech Connect

    JEFFERY,; LEWINS, D.

    2009-07-27

    Version 00 Dr. J.D. Lewins has now released the following legacy book for free distribution: Nuclear Reactor Kinetics and Control, Pergamon Press, London, 275 pages, 1978. 1. Introductory Review 2. Neutron and Precursor Equations 3. Elementary Solutions of the Kinetics Equations at Low Power 4. Linear Reactor Process Dynamics with Feedback 5. Power Reactor Control Systems 6. Fluctuations and Reactor Noise 7. Safety and Reliability 8. Non Linear Systems; Stability and Control 9. Analogue Computing Addendum: Jay Basken and Jeffery D. Lewins: Power Series Solution of the Reactor Kinetics Equations, Nuclear Science and Engineering: 122, 407-436 (1996) (authorized for distribution with the book: courtesy of the American Nuclear Society)

  19. Nuclear reactor control apparatus

    DOEpatents

    Sridhar, Bettadapur N.

    1983-11-01

    Nuclear reactor core safety rod release apparatus comprises a control rod having a detent notch in the form of an annular peripheral recess at its upper end, a control rod support tube for raising and lowering the control rod under normal conditions, latches pivotally mounted on the control support tube with free ends thereof normally disposed in the recess in the control rod, and cam means for pivoting the latches out of the recess in the control rod when a scram condition occurs. One embodiment of the invention comprises an additional magnetically-operated latch for releasing the control rod under two different conditions, one involving seismic shock.

  20. Energy production using fission fragment rockets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chapline, G.; Matsuda, Y.

    1991-08-01

    Fission fragment rockets are nuclear reactors with a core consisting of thin fibers in a vacuum, and which use magnetic fields to extract the fission fragments from the reactor core. As an alternative to ordinary nuclear reactors, fission fragment rockets would have the following advantages: approximately twice the efficiency if the fission fragment energy can be directly converted into electricity; reduction of the buildup of a fission fragment inventory in the reactor could avoid a Chernobyl type disaster; and collection of the fission fragments outside the reactor could simplify the waste disposal problem.

  1. Investigation of applications for high-power, self-critical fissioning uranium plasma reactors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rodgers, R. J.; Latham, T. S.; Krascella, N. L.

    1976-01-01

    Analytical studies were conducted to investigate potentially attractive applications for gaseous nuclear cavity reactors fueled by uranium hexafluoride and its decomposition products at temperatures of 2000 to 6000 K and total pressures of a few hundred atmospheres. Approximate operating conditions and performance levels for a class of nuclear reactors in which fission energy removal is accomplished principally by radiant heat transfer from the high temperature gaseous nuclear fuel to surrounding absorbing media were determined. The results show the radiant energy deposited in the absorbing media may be efficiently utilized in energy conversion system applications which include (1) a primary energy source for high thrust, high specific impulse space propulsion, (2) an energy source for highly efficient generation of electricity, and (3) a source of high intensity photon flux for heating working fluid gases for hydrogen production or MHD power extraction.

  2. The Sustainable Nuclear Future: Fission and Fusion E.M. Campbell Logos Technologies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Campbell, E. Michael

    2010-02-01

    Global industrialization, the concern over rising CO2 levels in the atmosphere and other negative environmental effects due to the burning of hydrocarbon fuels and the need to insulate the cost of energy from fuel price volatility have led to a renewed interest in nuclear power. Many of the plants under construction are similar to the existing light water reactors but incorporate modern engineering and enhanced safety features. These reactors, while mature, safe and reliable sources of electrical power have limited efficiency in converting fission power to useful work, require significant amounts of water, and must deal with the issues of nuclear waste (spent fuel), safety, and weapons proliferation. If nuclear power is to sustain its present share of the world's growing energy needs let alone displace carbon based fuels, more than 1000 reactors will be needed by mid century. For this to occur new reactors that are more efficient, versatile in their energy markets, require minimal or no water, produce less waste and more robust waste forms, are inherently safe and minimize proliferation concerns will be necessary. Graphite moderated, ceramic coated fuel, and He cooled designs are reactors that can satisfy these requirements. Along with other generation IV fast reactors that can further reduce the amounts of spent fuel and extend fuel resources, such a nuclear expansion is possible. Furthermore, facilities either in early operations or under construction should demonstrate the next step in fusion energy development in which energy gain is produced. This demonstration will catalyze fusion energy development and lead to the ultimate development of the next generation of nuclear reactors. In this presentation the role of advanced fission reactors and future fusion reactors in the expansion of nuclear power will be discussed including synergies with the existing worldwide nuclear fleet. )

  3. Nuclear reactor fuel element with vanadium getter on cladding

    DOEpatents

    Johnson, Carl E.; Carroll, Kenneth G.

    1977-01-01

    A nuclear reactor fuel element is described which has an outer cladding, a central core of fissionable or mixed fissionable and fertile fuel material and a layer of vanadium as an oxygen getter on the inner surface of the cladding. The vanadium reacts with oxygen released by the fissionable material during irradiation of the core to prevent the oxygen from reacting with and corroding the cladding. Also described is a method for coating the inner surface of small diameter tubes of cladding with a layer of vanadium.

  4. Experiments on nuclear fission induced by radioactive beams

    SciTech Connect

    Skobelev, N.K.

    1994-07-01

    The cross sections of {sup 209}Bi nuclear fission induced by secondary beams of {sup 6}He and {sup 4}He are measured under identical conditions. The experimental data are in good agreement with earlier results on the fission cross section of the {sup 4}He + {sup 209}Bi reaction. The measured values of the cross section of {sup 209}Bi fission induced by {sup 6}He ions are much higher than the cross sections of fission induced by {alpha}-particles. It is found that the fission threshold for the {sup 6}He + {sup 209}Bi reaction is shifted as compared to that of the {sup 4}He + {sup 209}Bi reaction. Various factors that can be responsible for the observed peculiarities in the {sup 209}Bi fission induced by the {sup 6}He ions are analyzed. 25 refs., 5 figs.

  5. NUCLEAR REACTOR CORE DESIGN

    DOEpatents

    Mahlmeister, J.E.; Peck, W.S.; Haberer, W.V.; Williams, A.C.

    1960-03-22

    An improved core design for a sodium-cooled, graphitemoderated nuclear reactor is described. The improved reactor core comprises a number of blocks of moderator material, each block being in the shape of a regular prism. A number of channels, extending the length of each block, are disposed around the periphery. When several blocks are placed in contact to form the reactor core, the channels in adjacent blocks correspond with each other to form closed conduits extending the length of the core. Fuel element clusters are disposed in these closed conduits, and liquid coolant is forced through the annulus between the fuel cluster and the inner surface of the conduit. In a preferred embodiment of the invention, the moderator blocks are in the form of hexagonal prisms with longitudinal channels cut into the corners of the hexagon. The main advantage of an "edge-loaded" moderator block is that fewer thermal neutrons are absorbed by the moderator cladding, as compared with a conventional centrally loaded moderator block.

  6. Photofission observations in reactor environments using selected fission-product yields

    SciTech Connect

    Gold, R.; Ruddy, F.H.; Roberts, J.H.

    1982-01-22

    A new method for the observation of photofission in reactor environments is advanced. It is based on the in-situ observation of fission product yield. In fact, at a given in-situ reactor location, the fission product yield is simply a weighted linear combination of the photofission product yield, Y/sub gamma/, and the neutron induced fission product yield, Y/sub n. The weight factors arising in this linear combination are the photofission fraction and neutron induced fission fraction, respectively. This method can be readily implemented with established techniques for measuring in-situ reactor fission product yield. For example, one can use the method based on simultaneous irradiation of radiometric (RM) and solid state track recorder (SSTR) fission monitors. The sensitivity and accuracy and current knowledge of fission product yields. Unique advantages of this method for reactor applications are emphasized.

  7. Pairing-induced speedup of nuclear spontaneous fission

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Sadhukhan, Jhilam; Dobaczewski, J.; Nazarewicz, W.; Sheikh, J. A.; Baran, A.

    2014-12-22

    Collective inertia is strongly influenced at the level crossing at which the quantum system changes its microscopic configuration diabatically. Pairing correlations tend to make the large-amplitude nuclear collective motion more adiabatic by reducing the effect of these configuration changes. Competition between pairing and level crossing is thus expected to have a profound impact on spontaneous fission lifetimes. To elucidate the role of nucleonic pairing on spontaneous fission, we study the dynamic fission trajectories of 264Fm and 240Pu using the state-of-the-art self-consistent framework. We employ the superfluid nuclear density functional theory with the Skyrme energy density functional SkM* and a density-dependentmore » pairing interaction. Along with shape variables, proton and neutron pairing correlations are taken as collective coordinates. The collective inertia tensor is calculated within the nonperturbative cranking approximation. The fission paths are obtained by using the least action principle in a four-dimensional collective space of shape and pairing coordinates. Pairing correlations are enhanced along the minimum-action fission path. For the symmetric fission of 264Fm, where the effect of triaxiality on the fission barrier is large, the geometry of the fission pathway in the space of the shape degrees of freedom is weakly impacted by pairing. This is not the case for 240Pu, where pairing fluctuations restore the axial symmetry of the dynamic fission trajectory. The minimum-action fission path is strongly impacted by nucleonic pairing. In some cases, the dynamical coupling between shape and pairing degrees of freedom can lead to a dramatic departure from the static picture. As a result, in the dynamical description of nuclear fission, particle-particle correlations should be considered on the same footing as those associated with shape degrees of freedom.« less

  8. Pairing-induced speedup of nuclear spontaneous fission

    SciTech Connect

    Sadhukhan, Jhilam; Dobaczewski, J.; Nazarewicz, W.; Sheikh, J. A.; Baran, A.

    2014-12-22

    Collective inertia is strongly influenced at the level crossing at which the quantum system changes its microscopic configuration diabatically. Pairing correlations tend to make the large-amplitude nuclear collective motion more adiabatic by reducing the effect of these configuration changes. Competition between pairing and level crossing is thus expected to have a profound impact on spontaneous fission lifetimes. To elucidate the role of nucleonic pairing on spontaneous fission, we study the dynamic fission trajectories of 264Fm and 240Pu using the state-of-the-art self-consistent framework. We employ the superfluid nuclear density functional theory with the Skyrme energy density functional SkM* and a density-dependent pairing interaction. Along with shape variables, proton and neutron pairing correlations are taken as collective coordinates. The collective inertia tensor is calculated within the nonperturbative cranking approximation. The fission paths are obtained by using the least action principle in a four-dimensional collective space of shape and pairing coordinates. Pairing correlations are enhanced along the minimum-action fission path. For the symmetric fission of 264Fm, where the effect of triaxiality on the fission barrier is large, the geometry of the fission pathway in the space of the shape degrees of freedom is weakly impacted by pairing. This is not the case for 240Pu, where pairing fluctuations restore the axial symmetry of the dynamic fission trajectory. The minimum-action fission path is strongly impacted by nucleonic pairing. In some cases, the dynamical coupling between shape and pairing degrees of freedom can lead to a dramatic departure from the static picture. As a result, in the dynamical description of nuclear fission, particle-particle correlations should be considered on the same footing as those associated with shape degrees of freedom.

  9. Pairing-induced speedup of nuclear spontaneous fission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sadhukhan, Jhilam; Dobaczewski, J.; Nazarewicz, W.; Sheikh, J. A.; Baran, A.

    2014-12-01

    Background: Collective inertia is strongly influenced at the level crossing at which the quantum system changes its microscopic configuration diabatically. Pairing correlations tend to make the large-amplitude nuclear collective motion more adiabatic by reducing the effect of these configuration changes. Competition between pairing and level crossing is thus expected to have a profound impact on spontaneous fission lifetimes. Purpose: To elucidate the role of nucleonic pairing on spontaneous fission, we study the dynamic fission trajectories of 264Fm and 240Pu using the state-of-the-art self-consistent framework. Methods: We employ the superfluid nuclear density functional theory with the Skyrme energy density functional SkM* and a density-dependent pairing interaction. Along with shape variables, proton and neutron pairing correlations are taken as collective coordinates. The collective inertia tensor is calculated within the nonperturbative cranking approximation. The fission paths are obtained by using the least action principle in a four-dimensional collective space of shape and pairing coordinates. Results: Pairing correlations are enhanced along the minimum-action fission path. For the symmetric fission of 264Fm, where the effect of triaxiality on the fission barrier is large, the geometry of the fission pathway in the space of the shape degrees of freedom is weakly impacted by pairing. This is not the case for 240Pu, where pairing fluctuations restore the axial symmetry of the dynamic fission trajectory. Conclusions: The minimum-action fission path is strongly impacted by nucleonic pairing. In some cases, the dynamical coupling between shape and pairing degrees of freedom can lead to a dramatic departure from the static picture. Consequently, in the dynamical description of nuclear fission, particle-particle correlations should be considered on the same footing as those associated with shape degrees of freedom.

  10. Fuel Element for a Nuclear Reactor

    DOEpatents

    Duffy, Jr., J. G.

    1961-05-30

    A lattice-type fissionable fuel structure for a nuclear reactor is offered. The fissionable material is formed into a plurality of rod-like bodies each encased in a fluid-tight jacket. A plurality of spaced longitudinal fins are mounted on the exterior of and extend radially from each jacket, and a portion of the fins extends radially beyond the remainder of the fins. A collar of short lengih for each body is mounted on the extended fins for spacing the bodies, and adjacent bodies abut each other through these collars. Should distortion of the bodies take place, collapse of the outer fins is limited by the shorter fins thereby insuring some coolant flow therethrough at all times.

  11. FUEL ELEMENT FOR A NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Duffy, J.G. Jr.

    1961-05-30

    A lattice type fissionable fuel structure for a nuclear reactor is described. The fissionable material is formed into a plurality of rod-llke bodies with each encased in a fluid-tight jacket. A plurality of spaced longitudinal fins are mounted on the exterior and extend radially from each jacket, with a portion of the fins extending radially beyond the remainder of the fins. A collar of short length for each body is mounted on the extended fins for spacing the bodies, and adjacent bodies abut each other through these collars. Should distortion of the bodies take place, coilapse of the outer fins is limited by the shorter flns, thereby insuring some coolant flow at all times. (AEC)

  12. The neutronics studies of fusion fission hybrid power reactor

    SciTech Connect

    Zheng Youqi; Wu Hongchun; Zu Tiejun; Yang Chao; Cao Liangzhi

    2012-06-19

    In this paper, a series of neutronics analysis of hybrid power reactor is proposed. The ideas of loading different fuels in a modular-type fission blanket is analyzed, fitting different level of fusion developments, i.e., the current experimental power output, the level can be obtained in the coming future and the high-power fusion reactor like ITER. The energy multiplication of fission blankets and tritium breeding ratio are evaluated as the criterion of design. The analysis is implemented based on the D-type simplified model, aiming to find a feasible 1000MWe hybrid power reactor for 5 years' lifetime. Three patterns are analyzed: 1) for the low fusion power, the reprocessed fuel is chosen. The fuel with high plutonium content is loaded to achieve large energy multiplication. 2) For the middle fusion power, the spent fuel from PWRs can be used to realize about 30 times energy multiplication. 3) For the high fusion power, the natural uranium can be directly used and about 10 times energy multiplication can be achieved.

  13. SOURCE OF PRODUCTS OF NUCLEAR FISSION

    DOEpatents

    Harteck, P.; Dondes, S.

    1960-03-15

    A source of fission product recoil energy suitable for use in radiation chemistry is reported. The source consists of thermal neutron irradiated glass wool having a diameter of 1 to 5 microns and containing an isotope fissionable by thermal neutrons, such as U/sup 235/.

  14. EMERGENCY SHUTDOWN FOR NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Paget, J.A.; Koutz, S.L.; Stone, R.S.; Stewart, H.B.

    1963-12-24

    An emergency shutdown or scram apparatus for use in a nuclear reactor that includes a neutron absorber suspended from a temperature responsive substance that is selected to fail at a preselected temperature in excess of the normal reactor operating temperature, whereby the neutron absorber is released and allowed to fall under gravity to a preselected position within the reactor core is presented. (AEC)

  15. Nuclear Reactors. Revised.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hogerton, John F.

    This publication is one of a series of information booklets for the general public published by the United States Atomic Energy Commission. Among the topics discussed are: How Reactors Work; Reactor Design; Research, Teaching, and Materials Testing; Reactors (Research, Teaching and Materials); Production Reactors; Reactors for Electric Power…

  16. FUEL ELEMENT FOR NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Bassett, C.H.

    1961-11-21

    A fuel element is designed which is particularly adapted for reactors of high power density used to generate steam for the production of electricity. The fuel element consists of inner and outer concentric tubes forming an annular chamber within which is contained fissionable fuel pellet segments, wedge members interposed between the fuel segments, and a spring which, acting with wedge members, urges said fuel pellets radially into contact against the inner surface of the outer tube. The wedge members may be a fertile material convertible into fissionable fuel material by absorbing neutrons emitted from the fissionable fuel pellet segments. The costly grinding of cylindrical fuel pellets to close tolerances for snug engagement is reduced because the need to finish the exact size is eliminated. (AEC)

  17. Design and Build of Reactor Simulator for Fission Surface Power Technology Demonstrator Unit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Godfroy, Thomas; Dickens, Ricky; Houts, Michael; Pearson, Boise; Webster, Kenny; Gibson, Marc; Qualls, Lou; Poston, Dave; Werner, Jim; Radel, Ross

    2011-01-01

    The Nuclear Systems Team at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) focuses on technology development for state of the art capability in non-nuclear testing of nuclear system and Space Nuclear Power for fission reactor systems for lunar and Mars surface power generation as well as radioisotope power systems for both spacecraft and surface applications. Currently being designed and developed is a reactor simulator (RxSim) for incorporation into the Technology Demonstrator Unit (TDU) for the Fission Surface Power System (FSPS) Program, which is supported by multiple national laboratories and NASA centers. The ultimate purpose of the RxSim is to provide heated NaK to a pair of Stirling engines in the TDU. The RxSim includes many different systems, components, and instrumentation that have been developed at MSFC while working with pumped NaK systems and in partnership with the national laboratories and NASA centers. The main components of the RxSim are a core, a pump, a heat exchanger (to mimic the thermal load of the Stirling engines), and a flow meter for tests at MSFC. When tested at NASA Glenn Research Center (GRC) the heat exchanger will be replaced with a Stirling power conversion engine. Additional components include storage reservoirs, expansion volumes, overflow catch tanks, safety and support hardware, instrumentation (temperature, pressure, flow) for data collection, and power supplies. This paper will discuss the design and current build status of the RxSim for delivery to GRC in early 2012.

  18. Design and Build of Reactor Simulator for Fission Surface Power Technology Demonstrator Unit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Godfroy, T.; Dickens, R.; Houts, M.; Pearson, B.; Webster, K.; Gibson, M.; Qualls, L.; Poston, D.; Werner, J.; Radel, R.

    The Nuclear Systems Team at Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) focuses on technology development for state of the art capability in non-nuclear testing of nuclear system and Space Nuclear Power for fission reactor systems for lunar and mars surface power generation as well as radioisotope power systems for both spacecraft and surface applications. Currently being designed and developed is a reactor simulator (RxSim) for incorporation into the Technology Demonstrator Unit (TDU) for the Fission Surface Power System (FSPS) Program which is supported by multiple national laboratories and NASA centers. The ultimate purpose of the RxSim is to provide heated NaK to a pair of Stirling engines in the TDU. The RxSim includes many different systems, components, and instrumentation that have been developed at MSFC while working with pumped NaK systems and in partnership with the national laboratories and NASA centers. The main components of the RxSim are a core, a pump, a heat exchanger (to mimic the thermal load of the Stirling engines), and a flow meter when being tested at MSFC. When tested at GRC the heat exchanger will be replaced with a Stirling power conversion engine. Additional components include storage reservoirs, expansion volumes, overflow catch tanks, safety and support hardware, instrumenta- tion (temperature, pressure, flow) data collection, and power supplies. This paper will discuss the design and current build status of the RxSim for delivery to GRC in early 2012.

  19. NUCLEAR REACTOR CONTROL SYSTEM

    DOEpatents

    Howard, D.F.; Motta, E.E.

    1961-06-27

    A method for controlling the excess reactivity in a nuclear reactor throughout the core life while maintaining the neutron flux distribution at the desired level is described. The control unit embodies a container having two electrodes of different surface area immersed in an electrolytic solution of a good neutron sbsorbing metal ion such as boron, gadolinium, or cadmium. Initially, the neutron absorber is plated on the larger electrode to control the greater neutron flux of a freshly refueled core. As the fuel burns up, the excess reactivity decreases and the neutron absorber is then plated onto the smaller electrode so that the number of neutrons absorbed also decreases. The excess reactivity in the core may thus be maintained without the introduction of serious perturbations in the neutron flux distributibn.

  20. Nuclear reactor control apparatus

    DOEpatents

    Sridhar, Bettadapur N.

    1983-10-25

    Nuclear reactor safety rod release apparatus comprises a ring which carries detents normally positioned in an annular recess in outer side of the rod, the ring being held against the lower end of a drive shaft by magnetic force exerted by a solenoid carried by the drive shaft. When the solenoid is de-energized, the detent-carrying ring drops until the detents contact a cam surface associated with the lower end of the drive shaft, at which point the detents are cammed out of the recess in the safety rod to release the rod from the drive shaft. In preferred embodiments of the invention, an additional latch is provided to release a lower portion of a safety rod under conditions that may interfere with movement of the entire rod.

  1. GAS COOLED NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Long, E.; Rodwell, W.

    1958-06-10

    A gas-cooled nuclear reactor consisting of a graphite reacting core and reflector structure supported in a containing vessel is described. A gas sealing means is included for sealing between the walls of the graphite structure and containing vessel to prevent the gas coolant by-passing the reacting core. The reacting core is a multi-sided right prismatic structure having a pair of parallel slots around its periphery. The containing vessel is cylindrical and has a rib on its internal surface which supports two continuous ring shaped flexible web members with their radially innermost ends in sealing engagement within the radially outermost portion of the slots. The core structure is supported on ball bearings. This design permits thermal expansion of the core stracture and vessel while maintainirg a peripheral seal between the tvo elements.

  2. Nuclear reactor control

    DOEpatents

    Cawley, William E.; Warnick, Robert F.

    1982-01-01

    1. In a nuclear reactor incorporating a plurality of columns of tubular fuel elements disposed in horizontal tubes in a mass of graphite wherein water flows through the tubes to cool the fuel elements, the improvement comprising at least one control column disposed in a horizontal tube including fewer fuel elements than in a normal column of fuel elements and tubular control elements disposed at both ends of said control column, and means for varying the horizontal displacement of the control column comprising a winch at the upstream end of the control column and a cable extending through the fuel and control elements and attached to the element at the downstream end of the column.

  3. Nuclear reactors built, being built, or planned, 1991

    SciTech Connect

    Simpson, B.

    1992-07-01

    This document contains unclassified information about facilities built, being built, or planned in the United States for domestic use or export as of December 31, 1991. The book is divided into three major sections: Section 1 consists of a reactor locator map and reactor tables; Section 2 includes nuclear reactors that are operating, being built, or planned; and Section 3 includes reactors that have been shut down permanently or dismantled. Sections 2 and 3 contain the following classification of reactors: Civilian, Production, Military, Export, and Critical Assembly. Export reactor refers to a reactor for which the principal nuclear contractor is an American company -- working either independently or in cooperation with a foreign company (Part 4, in each section). Critical assembly refers to an assembly of fuel and assembly of fuel and moderator that requires an external source of neutrons to initiate and maintain fission. A critical assembly is used for experimental measurements (Part 5).

  4. Chromosome aberrations induced in human lymphocytes by U-235 fission neutrons: I. Irradiation of human blood samples in the "dry cell" of the TRIGA Mark II nuclear reactor.

    PubMed

    Fajgelj, A; Lakoski, A; Horvat, D; Remec, I; Skrk, J; Stegnar, P

    1991-11-01

    A set-up for irradiation of biological samples in the TRIGA Mark II research reactor in Ljubljana is described. Threshold activation detectors were used for characterisation of the neutron flux, and the accompanying gamma dose was measured by TLDs. Human peripheral blood samples were irradiated "in vitro" and biological effects evaluated according to the unstable chromosomal aberrations induced. Biological effects of two types of cultivation of irradiated blood samples, the first immediately after irradiation and the second after 96 h storage, were studied. A significant difference in the incidence of chromosomal aberrations between these two types of samples was obtained, while our dose-response curve fitting coefficients alpha 1 = (7.71 +/- 0.09) x 10(-2) Gy-1 (immediate cultivation) and alpha 2 = (11.03 +/- 0.08) x 10(-2) Gy-1 (96 h delayed cultivation) are in both cases lower than could be found in the literature. PMID:1962281

  5. Core Physics and Kinetics Calculations for the Fissioning Plasma Core Reactor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Butler, C.; Albright, D.

    2007-01-01

    Highly efficient, compact nuclear reactors would provide high specific impulse spacecraft propulsion. This analysis and numerical simulation effort has focused on the technical feasibility issues related to the nuclear design characteristics of a novel reactor design. The Fissioning Plasma Core Reactor (FPCR) is a shockwave-driven gaseous-core nuclear reactor, which uses Magneto Hydrodynamic effects to generate electric power to be used for propulsion. The nuclear design of the system depends on two major calculations: core physics calculations and kinetics calculations. Presently, core physics calculations have concentrated on the use of the MCNP4C code. However, initial results from other codes such as COMBINE/VENTURE and SCALE4a. are also shown. Several significant modifications were made to the ISR-developed QCALC1 kinetics analysis code. These modifications include testing the state of the core materials, an improvement to the calculation of the material properties of the core, the addition of an adiabatic core temperature model and improvement of the first order reactivity correction model. The accuracy of these modifications has been verified, and the accuracy of the point-core kinetics model used by the QCALC1 code has also been validated. Previously calculated kinetics results for the FPCR were described in the ISR report, "QCALC1: A code for FPCR Kinetics Model Feasibility Analysis" dated June 1, 2002.

  6. (COMEDIE program review and fission product transport in MHTGR reactor)

    SciTech Connect

    Stansfield, O.M.

    1990-03-15

    The subcontract between Martin Marietta Energy Systems, Inc., and the CEA provides for the refurbishment of the high pressure COMEDIE test loop in the SILOE reactor and a series of experiments to characterize fission product lift-off from MHTGR heat exchanger surfaces under several depressurization accident scenarios. The data will contribute to the validation of models and codes used to predict fission product transport in the MHTGR. In the meeting at CEA headquarters in Paris the program schedule and preparation for the DCAA and Quality Assurance audits were discussed. Long-range interest in expanded participation in the gas-cooled reactor technology Umbrella Agreement was also expressed by the CEA. At the CENG, in Grenoble, technical details on the loop design, fabrication components, development of test procedures, and preparation for the DOE quality assurance (QA) audit in May were discussed. After significant delays in CY 1989 it appears that good progress is being made in CY 1990 and the first major test will be initiated by December. An extensive list of agreements and commitments was generated to facilitate the coordination and planning of future work. 2 figs., 2 tabs.

  7. Quantum Aspects of Low-Energy Nuclear Fission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Furman, W.

    2011-10-01

    A helicity representation for fission product channels with correctly defined parity is used to describe neutron induced fission with arbitrary spin density matrix in ingoing channel. Recently obtained data for ROT effect in binary fission give evidence for high accuracy of the helicity representation just at scission. A general expression for differential cross-section of (n,f)-reaction is obtained. In the framework of multilevel, many channel R-matrix theory the reduced S-matrix for JΠK effective channels rigorously derived. These channels include fission modes in natural way. Theoretical analysis of experimentally observed P-even and P-odd interference effects in low energy nuclear fission allows one to make some essential conclusions on basic mechanism of the process.

  8. Modular System for Neutronics Calculations of Fission Reactors, Fusion Blankets, and Other Systems.

    Energy Science and Technology Software Center (ESTSC)

    1999-07-23

    AUS is a neutronics code system which may be used for calculations of a wide range of fission reactors, fusion blankets and other neutron applications. The present version, AUS98, has a nuclear cross section library based on ENDF/B-VI and includes modules which provide for reactor lattice calculations, one-dimensional transport calculations, multi-dimensional diffusion calculations, cell and whole reactor burnup calculations, and flexible editing of results. Calculations of multi-region resonance shielding, coupled neutron and photon transport, energymore » deposition, fission product inventory and neutron diffusion are combined within the one code system. The major changes from the previous release, AUS87, are the inclusion of a cross-section library based on ENDF/B-VI, the addition of the POW3D multi-dimensional diffusion module, the addition of the MICBURN module for controlling whole reactor burnup calculations, and changes to the system as a consequence of moving from IBM mainframe computers to UNIX workstations.« less

  9. Fast reactors and nuclear nonproliferation

    SciTech Connect

    Avrorin, E.N.; Rachkov, V.I.; Chebeskov, A.N.

    2013-07-01

    Problems are discussed with regard to nuclear fuel cycle resistance in fast reactors to nuclear proliferation risk due to the potential for use in military programs of the knowledge, technologies and materials gained from peaceful nuclear power applications. Advantages are addressed for fast reactors in the creation of a more reliable mode of nonproliferation in the closed nuclear fuel cycle in comparison with the existing fully open and partially closed fuel cycles of thermal reactors. Advantages and shortcomings are also discussed from the point of view of nonproliferation from the start with fast reactors using plutonium of thermal reactor spent fuel and enriched uranium fuel to the gradual transition using their own plutonium as fuel. (authors)

  10. Direct energy conversion in fission reactors: A U.S. NERI project

    SciTech Connect

    SLUTZ,STEPHEN A.; SEIDEL,DAVID B.; POLANSKY,GARY F.; ROCHAU,GARY E.; LIPINSKI,RONALD J.; BESENBRUCH,G.; BROWN,L.C.; PARISH,T.A.; ANGHAIE,S.; BELLER,D.E.

    2000-05-30

    In principle, the energy released by a fission can be converted directly into electricity by using the charged fission fragments. The first theoretical treatment of direct energy conversion (DEC) appeared in the literature in 1957. Experiments were conducted over the next ten years, which identified a number of problem areas. Research declined by the late 1960's due to technical challenges that limited performance. Under the Nuclear Energy Research Initiative the authors are determining if these technical challenges can be overcome with todays technology. The authors present the basic principles of DEC reactors, review previous research, discuss problem areas in detail, and identify technological developments of the last 30 years that can overcome these obstacles. As an example, the fission electric cell must be insulated to avoid electrons crossing the cell. This insulation could be provided by a magnetic field as attempted in the early experiments. However, from work on magnetically insulated ion diodes they know how to significantly improve the field geometry. Finally, a prognosis for future development of DEC reactors will be presented .

  11. Fuel handling system for a nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Saiveau, James G.; Kann, William J.; Burelbach, James P.

    1986-01-01

    A pool type nuclear fission reactor has a core, with a plurality of core elements and a redan which confines coolant as a hot pool at a first end of the core separated from a cold pool at a second end of the core by the redan. A fuel handling system for use with such reactors comprises a core element storage basket located outside of the redan in the cold pool. An access passage is formed in the redan with a gate for opening and closing the passage to maintain the temperature differential between the hot pool and the cold pool. A mechanism is provided for opening and closing the gate. A lifting arm is also provided for manipulating the fuel core elements through the access passage between the storage basket and the core when the redan gate is open.

  12. Fuel handling system for a nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Saiveau, James G.; Kann, William J.; Burelbach, James P.

    1986-12-02

    A pool type nuclear fission reactor has a core, with a plurality of core elements and a redan which confines coolant as a hot pool at a first end of the core separated from a cold pool at a second end of the core by the redan. A fuel handling system for use with such reactors comprises a core element storage basket located outside of the redan in the cold pool. An access passage is formed in the redan with a gate for opening and closing the passage to maintain the temperature differential between the hot pool and the cold pool. A mechanism is provided for opening and closing the gate. A lifting arm is also provided for manipulating the fuel core elements through the access passage between the storage basket and the core when the redan gate is open.

  13. Validation of the neutron and gamma fields in the JSI TRIGA reactor using in-core fission and ionization chambers.

    PubMed

    Žerovnik, Gašper; Kaiba, Tanja; Radulović, Vladimir; Jazbec, Anže; Rupnik, Sebastjan; Barbot, Loïc; Fourmentel, Damien; Snoj, Luka

    2015-02-01

    CEA developed fission chambers and ionization chambers were utilized at the JSI TRIGA reactor to measure neutron and gamma fields. The measured axial fission rate distributions in the reactor core are generally in good agreement with the calculated values using the Monte Carlo model of the reactor thus verifying both the computational model and the fission chambers. In future, multiple absolutely calibrated fission chambers could be used for more accurate online reactor thermal power monitoring. PMID:25479432

  14. Fission Yields and Other Diagnostics for Nuclear Performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chadwick, M. B.

    2014-06-01

    I summarize advances in our understanding of basic nuclear physics cross sections and decay properties that are needed to characterize the magnitude and energy-dependence of a neutron flux, and to determine the amount of fission burnup in plutonium fuel. The number of fissions that have occurred in a neutron environment can be deduced from measurements of the fission products created, providing that the fission product yields are known accurately. I describe how our understanding of plutonium fission product yields has improved in recent years through a meta-analysis of various measured data, and through identification of fission product yield incident-energy dependencies over the 0.2-2 MeV fast energy region. This led to the resolution of a previous discrepancy between the Los Alamos and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories in their plutonium yield assessments in the fast energy region, although more experimental work is still needed to resolve discrepancies at 14 MeV. Work is also described that has improved our understanding of (n,2n) cross sections that are used as diagnostics of the high-energy neutron spectrum - both on plutonium and americium, and on the radiochemical detectors yttrium, iridium, and thulium. Finally, some observations are made on the importance of continuing to develop our Evaluated Nuclear Data Files (ENDF) database using physics insights from differential cross section and integral laboratory experiments and from nuclear theory advances.

  15. Fission Yields and Other Diagnostics for Nuclear Performance

    SciTech Connect

    Chadwick, M.B.

    2014-06-15

    I summarize advances in our understanding of basic nuclear physics cross sections and decay properties that are needed to characterize the magnitude and energy-dependence of a neutron flux, and to determine the amount of fission burnup in plutonium fuel. The number of fissions that have occurred in a neutron environment can be deduced from measurements of the fission products created, providing that the fission product yields are known accurately. I describe how our understanding of plutonium fission product yields has improved in recent years through a meta-analysis of various measured data, and through identification of fission product yield incident-energy dependencies over the 0.2-2 MeV fast energy region. This led to the resolution of a previous discrepancy between the Los Alamos and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories in their plutonium yield assessments in the fast energy region, although more experimental work is still needed to resolve discrepancies at 14 MeV. Work is also described that has improved our understanding of (n,2n) cross sections that are used as diagnostics of the high-energy neutron spectrum – both on plutonium and americium, and on the radiochemical detectors yttrium, iridium, and thulium. Finally, some observations are made on the importance of continuing to develop our Evaluated Nuclear Data Files (ENDF) database using physics insights from differential cross section and integral laboratory experiments and from nuclear theory advances.

  16. Neutron Radiography and Fission Mapping Measurements of Nuclear Materials with Varying Composition and Shielding

    SciTech Connect

    Mullens, James Allen; McConchie, Seth M; Hausladen, Paul; Mihalczo, John T; Grogan, Brandon R; Sword, Eric D

    2011-01-01

    Neutron radiography and fission mapping measurements were performed on four measurement objects with varying composition and shielding arrangements at the Idaho National Laboratory's Zero Power Physics Reactor (ZPPR) facility. The measurement objects were assembled with ZPPR reactor plate materials comprising plutonium, natural uranium, or highly enriched uranium and were presented as unknowns for characterization. As a part of the characterization, neutron radiography was performed using a deuterium-tritium (D-T) neutron generator as a source of time and directionally tagged 14 MeV neutrons. The neutrons were detected by plastic scintillators placed on the opposite side of the object, using the time-correlation-based data acquisition of the Nuclear Materials Identification System developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Each object was measured at several rotations with respect to the neutron source to obtain a tomographic reconstruction of the object and a limited identification of materials via measurement of the neutron attenuation. Large area liquid scintillators with pulse shape discrimination were used to detect the induced fission neutrons. A fission site map reconstruction was produced by time correlating the induced fission neutrons with each tagged neutron from the D-T neutron generator. This paper describes the experimental configuration, the ZPPR measurement objects used, and the neutron imaging and fission mapping results.

  17. Displacement damage in silicon carbide irradiated in fission reactors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heinisch, H. L.; Greenwood, L. R.; Weber, W. J.; Williford, R. E.

    2004-05-01

    Calculations are performed for displacement damage in SiC due to irradiation in the neutron environments of various types of nuclear reactors using the best available models and nuclear data. The displacement damage calculations use recently developed damage functions for SiC that are based on extensive molecular dynamics simulations of displacement events. Displacements per atom (DPA) cross sections for SiC have been calculated as a function of neutron energy, and they are presented here in tabular form to facilitate their use as the standard measure of displacement damage for irradiated SiC. DPA cross sections averaged over the neutron energy spectrum are calculated for neutron spectra in the cores of typical commercial reactors and in the test sample irradiation regions of several materials test reactors used in both past and present irradiation testing. Particular attention is focused on a next-generation high-temperature gas-cooled pebble bed reactor, for which the high-temperature properties of silicon carbide fiber-reinforced silicon carbide composites are well suited. Calculated transmutations and activation levels in a pebble bed reactor are compared to those in other reactors.

  18. Nuclear Reactor Kinetics and Control.

    Energy Science and Technology Software Center (ESTSC)

    2009-07-27

    Version 00 Dr. J.D. Lewins has now released the following legacy book for free distribution: Nuclear Reactor Kinetics and Control, Pergamon Press, London, 275 pages, 1978. 1. Introductory Review 2. Neutron and Precursor Equations 3. Elementary Solutions of the Kinetics Equations at Low Power 4. Linear Reactor Process Dynamics with Feedback 5. Power Reactor Control Systems 6. Fluctuations and Reactor Noise 7. Safety and Reliability 8. Non Linear Systems; Stability and Control 9. Analogue Computingmore » Addendum: Jay Basken and Jeffery D. Lewins: Power Series Solution of the Reactor Kinetics Equations, Nuclear Science and Engineering: 122, 407-436 (1996) (authorized for distribution with the book: courtesy of the American Nuclear Society)« less

  19. Nuclear Reactors and Technology; (USA)

    SciTech Connect

    Cason, D.L.; Hicks, S.C.

    1991-01-01

    Nuclear Reactors and Technology (NRT) announces on a monthly basis the current worldwide information available from the open literature on nuclear reactors and technology, including all aspects of power reactors, components and accessories, fuel elements, control systems, and materials. This publication contains the abstracts of DOE reports, journal articles, conference papers, patents, theses, and monographs added to the Energy Science and Technology Database (EDB) during the past month. Also included are US information obtained through acquisition programs or interagency agreements and international information obtained through the International Energy Agency's Energy Technology Data Exchange or government-to-government agreements. The digests in NRT and other citations to information on nuclear reactors back to 1948 are available for online searching and retrieval on EDB and Nuclear Science Abstracts (NSA) database. Current information, added daily to EDB, is available to DOE and its contractors through the DOE integrated Technical Information System. Customized profiles can be developed to provide current information to meet each user's needs.

  20. Nuclear reactor I

    DOEpatents

    Ference, Edward W.; Houtman, John L.; Waldby, Robert N.

    1977-01-01

    A nuclear reactor, particularly a liquid-metal breeder reactor whose upper internals include provision for channeling the liquid metal flowing from the core-component assemblies to the outlet plenum in vertical paths in direction generally along the direction of the respective assemblies. The metal is channeled by chimneys, each secured to, and extending from, a grid through whose openings the metal emitted by a plurality of core-component assemblies encompassed by the grid flows. To reduce the stresses resulting from structural interaction, or the transmissive of thermal strains due to large temperature differences in the liquid metal emitted from neighboring core-component assemblies, throughout the chimneys and the other components of the upper internals, the grids and the chimneys are supported from the heat plate and the core barrel by support columns (double portal support) which are secured to the head plate at the top and to a member, which supports the grids and is keyed to the core barrel, at the bottom. In addition to being restrained from lateral flow by the chimneys, the liquid metal is also restrained from flowing laterally by a peripheral seal around the top of the core. This seal limits the flow rate of liquid metal, which may be sharply cooled during a scram, to the outlet nozzles. The chimneys and the grids are formed of a highly-refractory, high corrosion-resistant nickel-chromium-iron alloy which can withstand the stresses produced by temperature differences in the liquid metal. The chimneys are supported by pairs of plates, each pair held together by hollow stubs coaxial with, and encircling, the chimneys. The plates and stubs are a welded structure but, in the interest of economy, are composed of stainless steel which is not weld compatible with the refractory metal. The chimneys and stubs are secured together by shells of another nickel-chromium-iron alloy which is weld compatible with, and is welded to, the stubs and has about the same

  1. Heat transfer in a fissioning uranium plasma reactor cavity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kascak, A. F.

    1973-01-01

    Two schemes are investigated by which a fission-heated uranium plasma located in the central cavity of a test reactor could be insulated to keep its temperature above condensation in a neutron flux of 10 to the 15th power neutrons/(sq cm)(sec) or less. The first scheme was to use a mirrored cavity wall to reflect the thermal radiation back into the plasma. The second scheme was to seed the transpirational cavity wall coolant so as to make it opaque to thermal radiation, thus insulating the hot plasma from the cold wall. The analysis showed that a mirrored cavity wall must have a reflectivity of over 95 percent or that seeded argon must be used as the wall coolant to give an acceptable operating margin above fuel condensation conditions.

  2. Compilation of fission product yields Vallecitos Nuclear Center

    SciTech Connect

    Rider, B.F.

    1980-01-01

    This document is the ninth in a series of compilations of fission yield data made at Vallecitos Nuclear Center in which fission yield measurements reported in the open literature and calculated charge distributions have been utilized to produce a recommended set of yields for the known fission products. The original data with reference sources, as well as the recommended yields are presented in tabular form for the fissionable nuclides U-235, Pu-239, Pu-241, and U-233 at thermal neutron energies; for U-235, U-238, Pu-239, and Th-232 at fission spectrum energies; and U-235 and U-238 at 14 MeV. In addition, U-233, U-236, Pu-240, Pu-241, Pu-242, Np-237 at fission spectrum energies; U-233, Pu-239, Th-232 at 14 MeV and Cf-252 spontaneous fission are similarly treated. For 1979 U234F, U237F, Pu249H, U234He, U236He, Pu238F, Am241F, Am243F, Np238F, and Cm242F yields were evaluated. In 1980, Th227T, Th229T, Pa231F, Am241T, Am241H, Am242Mt, Cm245T, Cf249T, Cf251T, and Es254T are also evaluated.

  3. Materials compatibility considerations for a fusion-fission hybrid reactor design

    SciTech Connect

    DeVan, J.H.; Tortorelli, P.F.

    1983-01-01

    The Tandem Mirror Hybrid Reactor is a fusion reactor concept that incorporates a fission-suppressed breeding blanket for the production of /sup 233/U to be used in conventional fission power reactors. The present paper reports on compatibility considerations related to the blanket design. These considerations include solid-solid interactions and liquid metal corrosion. Potential problems are discussed relative to the reference blanket operating temperature (490/sup 0/C) and the recycling time of breeding materials (<1 year).

  4. Nuclear Reactor Engineering Analysis Laboratory

    SciTech Connect

    Carlos Chavez-Mercado; Jaime B. Morales-Sandoval; Benjamin E. Zayas-Perez

    1998-12-31

    The Nuclear Reactor Engineering Analysis Laboratory (NREAL) is a sophisticated computer system with state-of-the-art analytical tools and technology for analysis of light water reactors. Multiple application software tools can be activated to carry out different analyses and studies such as nuclear fuel reload evaluation, safety operation margin measurement, transient and severe accident analysis, nuclear reactor instability, operator training, normal and emergency procedures optimization, and human factors engineering studies. An advanced graphic interface, driven through touch-sensitive screens, provides the means to interact with specialized software and nuclear codes. The interface allows the visualization and control of all observable variables in a nuclear power plant (NPP), as well as a selected set of nonobservable or not directly controllable variables from conventional control panels.

  5. Autocatalytic fission-fusion microexplosions for nuclear pulse propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winterberg, F.

    2000-12-01

    Autocatalytic fission-fusion microexplosions, mutually amplifying fission and fusion reactions, are proposed for propulsion. Autocatalytic fission-fusion microexplosions can be realized by imploding a shell of uranium 235 (or plutonium) onto a magnetized deuterium-tritium (DT) plasma. After having reached a high temperature, the DT plasma releases fusion neutrons making fission reactions in the fissile shell increasing the implosion velocity which in turn increases the fusion reaction rate until full ignition of the DT plasma. To implode the fissile shell a small amount of high explosive and to magnetize the DT plasma a small auxiliary electric discharge are required. In comparison to nuclear bomb pulse propulsion, the energy released per pulse is much smaller and the efficiency higher. And in comparison to laser- or particle-beam-ignited fusion microexplosions, there is no need for a massive fusion ignition driver.

  6. Fission fizzles: Estimating the yield of a predetonated nuclear weapon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cameron Reed, B.

    2011-07-01

    An undergraduate-level model is developed for estimating the fraction of the design yield that can be realized if a uranium or a plutonium fission bomb suffers an uncontrolled predetonation due to a spontaneous fission of the fissile material. The model is based on the combination of one published earlier for the predetonation probability and a yield model developed by Mark et al. ["Explosive properties of reactor-grade plutonium," Sci. Global Secur. 17 (2), 170-185 (2009); a reprint of the same paper published in Sci. Global Secur. 4 (1), 111-128 (1993)].

  7. Nuclear Fission Investigation with Twin Ionization Chamber

    SciTech Connect

    Zeynalova, O.; Zeynalov, Sh.; Nazarenko, M.; Hambsch, F.-J.; Oberstedt, S.

    2011-11-29

    The purpose of the present paper was to report the recent results, obtained in development of digital pulse processing mathematics for prompt fission neutron (PFN) investigation using twin ionization chamber (TIC) along with fast neutron time-of-flight detector (ND). Due to well known ambiguities in literature (see refs. [4, 6, 9 and 11]), concerning a pulse induction on TIC electrodes by FF ionization, we first presented detailed mathematical analysis of fission fragment (FF) signal formation on TIC anode. The analysis was done using Ramo-Shockley theorem, which gives relation between charged particle motion between TIC electrodes and so called weighting potential. Weighting potential was calculated by direct numerical solution of Laplace equation (neglecting space charge) for the TIC geometry and ionization, caused by FF. Formulae for grid inefficiency (GI) correction and digital pulse processing algorithms for PFN time-of-flight measurements and pulse shape analysis are presented and discussed.

  8. Linear free energy correlations for fission product release from the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear accident.

    PubMed

    Abrecht, David G; Schwantes, Jon M

    2015-03-01

    This paper extends the preliminary linear free energy correlations for radionuclide release performed by Schwantes et al., following the Fukushima-Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident. Through evaluations of the molar fractionations of radionuclides deposited in the soil relative to modeled radionuclide inventories, we confirm the initial source of the radionuclides to the environment to be from active reactors rather than the spent fuel pool. Linear correlations of the form In χ = −α ((ΔGrxn°(TC))/(RTC)) + β were obtained between the deposited concentrations, and the reduction potentials of the fission product oxide species using multiple reduction schemes to calculate ΔG°rxn (TC). These models allowed an estimate of the upper bound for the reactor temperatures of TC between 2015 and 2060 K, providing insight into the limiting factors to vaporization and release of fission products during the reactor accident. Estimates of the release of medium-lived fission products 90Sr, 121mSn, 147Pm, 144Ce, 152Eu, 154Eu, 155Eu, and 151Sm through atmospheric venting during the first month following the accident were obtained, indicating that large quantities of 90Sr and radioactive lanthanides were likely to remain in the damaged reactor cores. PMID:25675358

  9. Linear Free Energy Correlations for Fission Product Release from the Fukushima-Daiichi Nuclear Accident

    SciTech Connect

    Abrecht, David G.; Schwantes, Jon M.

    2015-03-03

    This paper extends the preliminary linear free energy correlations for radionuclide release performed by Schwantes, et al., following the Fukushima-Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident. Through evaluations of the molar fractionations of radionuclides deposited in the soil relative to modeled radionuclide inventories, we confirm the source of the radionuclides to be from active reactors rather than the spent fuel pool. Linear correlations of the form ln χ = -α (ΔGrxn°(TC))/(RTC)+β were obtained between the deposited concentration and the reduction potential of the fission product oxide species using multiple reduction schemes to calculate ΔG°rxn(TC). These models allowed an estimate of the upper bound for the reactor temperatures of TC between 2130 K and 2220 K, providing insight into the limiting factors to vaporization and release of fission products during the reactor accident. Estimates of the release of medium-lived fission products 90Sr, 121mSn, 147Pm, 144Ce, 152Eu, 154Eu, 155Eu, 151Sm through atmospheric venting and releases during the first month following the accident were performed, and indicate large quantities of 90Sr and radioactive lanthanides were likely to remain in the damaged reactor cores.

  10. NUCLEAR REACTOR FUEL SYSTEMS

    DOEpatents

    Thamer, B.J.; Bidwell, R.M.; Hammond, R.P.

    1959-09-15

    Homogeneous reactor fuel solutions are reported which provide automatic recombination of radiolytic gases and exhibit large thermal expansion characteristics, thereby providing stability at high temperatures and enabling reactor operation without the necessity of apparatus to recombine gases formed by the radiolytic dissociation of water in the fuel and without the necessity of liquid fuel handling outside the reactor vessel except for recovery processes. The fuels consist of phosphoric acid and water solutions of enriched uranium, wherein the uranium is in either the hexavalent or tetravalent state.

  11. Isospin effect on probing nuclear dissipation with fission cross sections

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tian, J.; Ye, W.

    2016-08-01

    Nuclear dissipation retards fission. Using the stochastic Langevin model, we calculate the drop of fission cross section caused by friction over its standard statistical-model value, σfdrop, as a function of the presaddle friction strength for fissioning nuclei 195Bi, 202Bi, and 209Bi as well as for different angular momenta. We find that friction effects on σfdrop are substantially enhanced with increasing isospin of the Bi system and become greater with decreasing angular momentum. Our findings suggest that in experiments, to better constrain the strength of presaddle dissipation through the measurement of fission excitation functions, it is optimal to yield those compound systems with a high isospin and a low spin. Furthermore, we analyze the data of fission excitation functions of 210Po and 209Bi systems, which are populated in p +209Bi and p +208Pb reactions and which have a high isospin and a low spin, and find that Langevin calculations with a presaddle friction strength of (3-5) ×10-21 s-1 describe these experimental fission data very well.

  12. Scaling laws in {sup 3}He induced nuclear fission

    SciTech Connect

    Rubehn, T.; Jing, K.X.; Moretto, L.G.; Phair, L.; Tso, K.; Wozniak, G.J.

    1996-12-01

    Fission excitation functions of compound nuclei in a mass region where shell effects are expected to be very strong are shown to scale exactly according to the transition state prediction once these shell effects are accounted for. Furthermore, the method applied in this paper allows for the model-independent determination of the nuclear shell effects. {copyright} {ital 1996 The American Physical Society.}

  13. Dielectric Heaters for Testing Spacecraft Nuclear Reactors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sims, William Herbert; Bitteker, Leo; Godfroy, Thomas

    2006-01-01

    A document proposes the development of radio-frequency-(RF)-driven dielectric heaters for non-nuclear thermal testing of the cores of nuclear-fission reactors for spacecraft. Like the electrical-resistance heaters used heretofore for such testing, the dielectric heaters would be inserted in the reactors in place of nuclear fuel rods. A typical heater according to the proposal would consist of a rod of lossy dielectric material sized and shaped like a fuel rod and containing an electrically conductive rod along its center line. Exploiting the dielectric loss mechanism that is usually considered a nuisance in other applications, an RF signal, typically at a frequency .50 MHz and an amplitude between 2 and 5 kV, would be applied to the central conductor to heat the dielectric material. The main advantage of the proposal is that the wiring needed for the RF dielectric heating would be simpler and easier to fabricate than is the wiring needed for resistance heating. In some applications, it might be possible to eliminate all heater wiring and, instead, beam the RF heating power into the dielectric rods from external antennas.

  14. Neutron-flux profile monitor for use in a fission reactor

    DOEpatents

    Kopp, M.K.; Valentine, K.H.

    1981-09-15

    A neutron flux monitor is provided which consists of a plurality of fission counters arranged as spaced-apart point detectors along a delay line. As a fission event occurs in any one of the counters, two delayed current pulses are generated at the output of the delay line. The time separation of the pulses identifies the counter in which the particular fission event occurred. Neutron flux profiles of reactor cores can be more accurately measured as a result.

  15. Radiation re-solution of fission gas in non-oxide nuclear fuel

    SciTech Connect

    Matthews, Christopher; Schwen, Daniel; Klein, Andrew C.

    2015-02-01

    Renewed interest in fast nuclear reactors is creating a need for better understanding of fission gas bubble behavior in non-oxide fuels to support very long fuel lifetimes. Collisions between fission fragments and their subsequent cascades can knock fission gas atoms out of bubbles and back into the fuel lattice. We showed that these collisions can be treated as using the so-called ‘‘homogenous’’ atom-by-atom re-solution theory and calculated using the Binary Collision Approximation code 3DOT. The calculations showed that there is a decrease in the re-solution parameter as bubble radius increases until about 50 nm, at which the re-solution parameter stays nearly constant. Furthermore, our model shows ion cascades created in the fuel result in many more implanted fission gas atoms than collisions directly with fission fragments. This calculated re-solution parameter can be used to find a re-solution rate for future bubble simulations.

  16. NUCLEAR REACTOR UNLOADING APPARATUS

    DOEpatents

    Leverett, M.C.; Howe, J.P.

    1959-01-20

    An unloading device is described for a heterogeneous reactor of the type wherein the fuel elements are in the form of cylindrical slugs and are disposed in horizontal coolant tubes which traverse the reactor core, coolant fluid being circulated through the tubes. The coolant tubes have at least two inwardly protruding ribs from their lower surfaces to support the slugs in spaced relationship to the inside walls of the tubes. The unloading device consists of a ribbon-like extractor member insertable into the coolant tubes in the space between the ribs and adapted to slide under the fuel slugs thereby raising them off of the ribs and forming a slideway for removing them from the reactor. The fuel slugs are ejected by being forced out of the tubes by incoming new fuel slugs or by a push rod insentable through the inlet end of the fuel tubes.

  17. RADIATION FACILITY FOR NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Currier, E.L. Jr.; Nicklas, J.H.

    1961-12-12

    A radiation facility is designed for irradiating samples in close proximity to the core of a nuclear reactor. The facility comprises essentially a tubular member extending through the biological shield of the reactor and containing a manipulatable rod having the sample carrier at its inner end, the carrier being longitudinally movable from a position in close proximity to the reactor core to a position between the inner and outer faces of the shield. Shield plugs are provided within the tubular member to prevent direct radiation from the core emanating therethrough. In this device, samples may be inserted or removed during normal operation of the reactor without exposing personnel to direct radiation from the reactor core. A storage chamber is also provided within the radiation facility to contain an irradiated sample during the period of time required to reduce the radioactivity enough to permit removal of the sample for external handling. (AEC)

  18. Florencite-(La) with fissiogenic REEs from a natural fission reactor at Bangombe, Gabon

    SciTech Connect

    Janeczek, J.; Ewing, R.C.

    1996-09-01

    Florecite-(La) (La/Ce = 1.09) with fissiogenic REEs and florecite-(Ce) (La/Ce = 0.62) have been identified in illite from the clay mantle surrounding a natural, 2 Ga fission reactor at Bangombre and in sandstone beneath the reactor zone, respectively. Florencite-(Ce) is apparently unrelated to nuclear processes and occurs with monazite-(Ce), apatite, TiO{sub 2} (probably anatase), zircon, and illite. Grains of florencite-(Ce) contain inclusions of thorite, chalcopyrite, and galena. Florencite-(La) was found 5 cm from the {open_quotes}core{close_quotes} of the reactor and contains inclusions of galena and U-Ti-bearing phases. Secondary uraninite and coffinite have precipitated on some of the florencite grains. The chemical composition of florencite-(La) as determined by electron microprobe analysis is (La{sub 0.38}Ce{sub 0.35}Nd{sub 0.06}Sm{sub 0.01}-Ca{sub 0.03}Sr{sub 0.17})(Al{sub 2.98}Fe{sub 0.02}{sup 3+})(PO{sub 4})[PO{sub 3.80}(OH){sub 0.20}](OH){sub 6}. Secondary ion mass spectrometry revealed that between 27 and 30% of Nd and 67 and 71% of Sm in florencite-(La) is fissiogenic. The presence of fissiogenic REEs in {open_quotes}florencite{close_quotes} from the reactor zone in Bangombe and their preferential concentration in florencite relative to the bulk sample of clay demonstrate that aluminous phosphates may have played a more significant role in the fixation of fissiogenic REES released from uraninite after the sustained fission reactions than sorption onto clays. 30 refs., 3 figs., 2 tabs.

  19. Nuclear reactor downcomer flow deflector

    DOEpatents

    Gilmore, Charles B.; Altman, David A.; Singleton, Norman R.

    2011-02-15

    A nuclear reactor having a coolant flow deflector secured to a reactor core barrel in line with a coolant inlet nozzle. The flow deflector redirects incoming coolant down an annulus between the core barrel and the reactor vessel. The deflector has a main body with a front side facing the fluid inlet nozzle and a rear side facing the core barrel. The rear side of the main body has at least one protrusion secured to the core barrel so that a gap exists between the rear side of the main body adjacent the protrusion and the core barrel. Preferably, the protrusion is a relief that circumscribes the rear side of the main body.

  20. A brief history of the Delayed'' discovery of nuclear fission

    SciTech Connect

    Holden, N.E.

    1989-08-01

    This year marks the Fiftieth Anniversary of the discovery of Nuclear Fission. In the early 1930's, the neutron was discovered, followed by the discovery of artificial radioactivity and then the use of the neutron to produce artificial radioactivity. The first experiments resulting in the fission of uranium took place in 1934. A paper which speculated on fission as an explanation was almost immediately published, yet no one took it seriously not even the author herself. Why did it take an additional five years before anyone realized what had occurred This is an abnormally long time in a period when discoveries, particularly in nuclear physics, seemed to be almost a daily occurrence. The events which led up to the discovery are recounted, with an attempt made to put them into their historical perspective. The role played by Mendeleev's Periodic Table, the role of the natural radioactive decay chain of uranium, the discovery of protactinium, the apparent discovery of masurium (technetium) and a speculation on the reason why Irene Curie may have missed the discovery of nuclear fission will all be discussed. 43 refs.

  1. Detecting fission from special nuclear material sources

    DOEpatents

    Rowland, Mark S.; Snyderman, Neal J.

    2012-06-05

    A neutron detector system for discriminating fissile material from non-fissile material wherein a digital data acquisition unit collects data at high rate, and in real-time processes large volumes of data directly into information that a first responder can use to discriminate materials. The system comprises counting neutrons from the unknown source and detecting excess grouped neutrons to identify fission in the unknown source. The system includes a graphing component that displays the plot of the neutron distribution from the unknown source over a Poisson distribution and a plot of neutrons due to background or environmental sources. The system further includes a known neutron source placed in proximity to the unknown source to actively interrogate the unknown source in order to accentuate differences in neutron emission from the unknown source from Poisson distributions and/or environmental sources.

  2. Nuclear reactors built, being built, or planned, 1994

    SciTech Connect

    1995-07-01

    This document contains unclassified information about facilities built, being built, or planned in the United States for domestic use or export as of December 31, 1994. The Office of Scientific and Technical Information, US Department of Energy, gathers this information annually from Washington headquarters and field offices of DOE; from the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC); from the US reactor manufacturers who are the principal nuclear contractors for foreign reactor locations; from US and foreign embassies; and from foreign governmental nuclear departments. The book consists of three divisions, as follows: a commercial reactor locator map and tables of the characteristic and statistical data that follow; a table of abbreviations; tables of data for reactors operating, being built, or planned; and tables of data for reactors that have been shut down permanently or dismantled. The reactors are subdivided into the following parts: Civilian, Production, Military, Export, and Critical Assembly. Export reactor refers to a reactor for which the principal nuclear contractor is a US company -- working either independently or in cooperation with a foreign company (Part 4). Critical assembly refers to an assembly of fuel and moderator that requires an external source of neutrons to initiate and maintain fission. A critical assembly is used for experimental measurements (Part 5).

  3. Nuclear reactors built, being built, or planned: 1995

    SciTech Connect

    1996-08-01

    This report contains unclassified information about facilities built, being built, or planned in the US for domestic use or export as of December 31, 1995. The Office of Scientific and Technical Information, US Department of Energy, gathers this information annually from Washington headquarters and field offices of DOE; from the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC); from the US reactor manufacturers who are the principal nuclear contractors for foreign reactor locations; from US and foreign embassies; and from foreign governmental nuclear departments. The book consists of three divisions, as follows: (1) a commercial reactor locator map and tables of the characteristic and statistical data that follow; a table of abbreviations; (2) tables of data for reactors operating, being built, or planned; and (3) tables of data for reactors that have been shut down permanently or dismantled. The reactors are subdivided into the following parts: Civilian, Production, Military, Export, and Critical Assembly. Export reactor refers to a reactor for which the principal nuclear contractor is a US company--working either independently or in cooperation with a foreign company (Part 4). Critical assembly refers to an assembly of fuel and moderator that requires an external source of neutrons to initiate and maintain fission. A critical assembly is used for experimental measurements (Part 5).

  4. NUCLEAR REACTOR COOLANT

    DOEpatents

    Colichman, E.L.

    1959-10-20

    The formation of new reactor coolants which suppress polymerization resulting from pyrolytic and radiation decomposition is described. The coolants consist of polyphenyls and condensed ring compounds having from two to about four carbon rings and from 0.1 to about 5% of beryllium or magnesium dispersed in the hydrocarbon.

  5. NUCLEAR REACTOR COOLANT

    DOEpatents

    Colichman, E.L.

    1959-10-20

    The formation of new reactor coolants which suppress polymerization resulting from pyrolitic and radiation decomposition is described. The coolants consist of polyphenyls and condensed ring compounds having from two to about four carbon rings and from 0.1 to about 10% of an alkall metal dispersed in the hydrocarbon.

  6. ALLOY FOR USE IN NUCLEAR FISSION

    DOEpatents

    Spedding, F.A.; Wilhelm, H.A.

    1958-03-11

    This patent relates to an alloy composition capable of functioning as a solid homogeneous reactor fuel. The alloy consists of a beryllium moderator, together with at least 0.7% of U/sup 235/, and up to 50% thorium to give increased workability to the alloy.

  7. A physical description of fission product behavior fuels for advanced power reactors.

    SciTech Connect

    Kaganas, G.; Rest, J.; Nuclear Engineering Division; Florida International Univ.

    2007-10-18

    The Global Nuclear Energy Partnership (GNEP) is considering a list of reactors and nuclear fuels as part of its chartered initiative. Because many of the candidate materials have not been explored experimentally under the conditions of interest, and in order to economize on program costs, analytical support in the form of combined first principle and mechanistic modeling is highly desirable. The present work is a compilation of mechanistic models developed in order to describe the fission product behavior of irradiated nuclear fuel. The mechanistic nature of the model development allows for the possibility of describing a range of nuclear fuels under varying operating conditions. Key sources include the FASTGRASS code with an application to UO{sub 2} power reactor fuel and the Dispersion Analysis Research Tool (DART ) with an application to uranium-silicide and uranium-molybdenum research reactor fuel. Described behavior mechanisms are divided into subdivisions treating fundamental materials processes under normal operation as well as the effect of transient heating conditions on these processes. Model topics discussed include intra- and intergranular gas-atom and bubble diffusion, bubble nucleation and growth, gas-atom re-solution, fuel swelling and ?scion gas release. In addition, the effect of an evolving microstructure on these processes (e.g., irradiation-induced recrystallization) is considered. The uranium-alloy fuel, U-xPu-Zr, is investigated and behavior mechanisms are proposed for swelling in the {alpha}-, intermediate- and {gamma}-uranium zones of this fuel. The work reviews the FASTGRASS kinetic/mechanistic description of volatile ?scion products and, separately, the basis for the DART calculation of bubble behavior in amorphous fuels. Development areas and applications for physical nuclear fuel models are identified.

  8. Fission products from the damaged Fukushima reactor observed in Hungary.

    PubMed

    Bihari, Árpád; Dezső, Zoltán; Bujtás, Tibor; Manga, László; Lencsés, András; Dombóvári, Péter; Csige, István; Ranga, Tibor; Mogyorósi, Magdolna; Veres, Mihály

    2014-01-01

    Fission products, especially (131)I, (134)Cs and (137)Cs, from the damaged Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant (NPP) were detected in many places worldwide shortly after the accident caused by natural disaster. To observe the spatial and temporal variation of these isotopes in Hungary, aerosol samples were collected at five locations from late March to early May 2011: Institute of Nuclear Research, Hungarian Academy of Sciences (ATOMKI, Debrecen, East Hungary), Paks NPP (Paks, South-Central Hungary) as well as at the vicinity of Aggtelek (Northeast Hungary), Tapolca (West Hungary) and Bátaapáti (Southwest Hungary) settlements. In addition to the aerosol samples, dry/wet fallout samples were collected at ATOMKI, and airborne elemental iodine and organic iodide samples were collected at Paks NPP. The peak in the activity concentration of airborne (131)I was observed around 30 March (1-3 mBq m(-3) both in aerosol samples and gaseous iodine traps) with a slow decline afterwards. Aerosol samples of several hundred cubic metres of air showed (134)Cs and (137)Cs in detectable amounts along with (131)I. The decay-corrected inventory of (131)I fallout at ATOMKI was 2.1±0.1 Bq m(-2) at maximum in the observation period. Dose-rate contribution calculations show that the radiological impact of this event at Hungarian locations was of no considerable concern. PMID:24437973

  9. Minimizing or eliminating refueling of nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Doncals, Richard A.; Paik, Nam-Chin; Andre, Sandra V.; Porter, Charles A.; Rathbun, Roy W.; Schwallie, Ambrose L.; Petras, Diane S.

    1989-01-01

    Demand for refueling of a liquid metal fast nuclear reactor having a life of 30 years is eliminated or reduced to intervals of at least 10 years by operating the reactor at a low linear-power density, typically 2.5 kw/ft of fuel rod, rather than 7.5 or 15 kw/ft, which is the prior art practice. So that power of the same magnitude as for prior art reactors is produced, the volume of the core is increased. In addition, the height of the core and it diameter are dimensioned so that the ratio of the height to the diameter approximates 1 to the extent practicable considering the requirement of control and that the pressure drop in the coolant shall not be excessive. The surface area of a cylinder of given volume is a minimum if the ratio of the height to the diameter is 1. By minimizing the surface area, the leakage of neutrons is reduced. By reducing the linear-power density, increasing core volume, reducing fissile enrichment and optimizing core geometry, internal-core breeding of fissionable fuel is substantially enhanced. As a result, core operational life, limited by control worth requirements and fuel burnup capability, is extended up to 30 years of continuous power operation.

  10. Gaseous fuel nuclear reactor research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schwenk, F. C.; Thom, K.

    1975-01-01

    Gaseous-fuel nuclear reactors are described; their distinguishing feature is the use of fissile fuels in a gaseous or plasma state, thereby breaking the barrier of temperature imposed by solid-fuel elements. This property creates a reactor heat source that may be able to heat the propellant of a rocket engine to 10,000 or 20,000 K. At this temperature level, gas-core reactors would provide the breakthrough in propulsion needed to open the entire solar system to manned and unmanned spacecraft. The possibility of fuel recycling makes possible efficiencies of up to 65% and nuclear safety at reduced cost, as well as high-thrust propulsion capabilities with specific impulse up to 5000 sec.

  11. Computer program FPIP-REV calculates fission product inventory for U-235 fission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brown, W. S.; Call, D. W.

    1967-01-01

    Computer program calculates fission product inventories and source strengths associated with the operation of U-235 fueled nuclear power reactor. It utilizes a fission-product nuclide library of 254 nuclides, and calculates the time dependent behavior of the fission product nuclides formed by fissioning of U-235.

  12. METHOD OF OPERATING NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Untermyer, S.

    1958-10-14

    A method is presented for obtaining enhanced utilization of natural uranium in heavy water moderated nuclear reactors by charging the reactor with an equal number of fuel elements formed of natural uranium and of fuel elements formed of uranium depleted in U/sup 235/ to the extent that the combination will just support a chain reaction. The reactor is operated until the rate of burnup of plutonium equals its rate of production, the fuel elements are processed to recover plutonium, the depleted uranium is discarded, and the remaining uranium is formed into fuel elements. These fuel elements are charged into a reactor along with an equal number of fuel elements formed of uranium depleted in U/sup 235/ to the extent that the combination will just support a chain reaction, and reuse of the uranium is continued as aforesaid until it wlll no longer support a chain reaction when combined with an equal quantity of natural uranium.

  13. Nuclear reactor effluent monitoring

    SciTech Connect

    Minns, J.L.; Essig, T.H.

    1993-12-31

    Radiological environmental monitoring and effluent monitoring at nuclear power plants is important both for normal operations, as well as in the event of an accident. During normal operations, environmental monitoring verifies the effectiveness of in-plant measures for controlling the release of radioactive materials in the plant. Following an accident, it would be an additional mechanism for estimating doses to members of the general public. This paper identifies the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) regulatory basis for requiring radiological environmental and effluent monitoring, licensee conditions for effluent and environmental monitoring, NRC independent oversight activities, and NRC`s program results.

  14. Nuclear reactor fuel element having improved heat transfer

    DOEpatents

    Garnier, J.E.; Begej, S.; Williford, R.E.; Christensen, J.A.

    1982-03-03

    A nuclear reactor fuel element having improved heat transfer between fuel material and cladding is described. The element consists of an outer cladding tube divided into an upper fuel section containing a central core of fissionable or mixed fissionable and fertile fuel material, slightly smaller in diameter than the inner surface of the cladding tube and a small lower accumulator section, the cladding tube being which is filled with a low molecular weight gas to transfer heat from fuel material to cladding during irradiation. A plurality of essentially vertical grooves in the fuel section extend downward and communicate with the accumulator section. The radial depth of the grooves is sufficient to provide a thermal gradient between the hot fuel surface and the relatively cooler cladding surface to allow thermal segregation to take place between the low molecular weight heat transfer gas and high molecular weight fission product gases produced by the fuel material during irradiation.

  15. NEET Enhanced Micro Pocket Fission Detector for High Temperature Reactors - FY15 Status Report

    SciTech Connect

    Unruh, Troy; McGregor, Douglas; Ugorowski, Phil; Reichenberger, Michael; Ito, Takashi

    2015-09-01

    A new project, that is a collaboration between the Idaho National Laboratory (INL), the Kansas State University (KSU), and the French Atomic Energy Agency, Commissariat à l'Énergie Atomique et aux Energies Alternatives, (CEA), has been initiated by the Nuclear Energy Enabling Technologies (NEET) Advanced Sensors and Instrumentation (ASI) program for developing and testing High Temperature Micro-Pocket Fission Detectors (HT MPFD), which are compact fission chambers capable of simultaneously measuring thermal neutron flux, fast neutron flux and temperature within a single package for temperatures up to 800 °C. The MPFD technology utilizes a small, multi-purpose, robust, in-core parallel plate fission chamber and thermocouple. As discussed within this report, the small size, variable sensitivity, and increased accuracy of the MPFD technology represent a revolutionary improvement over current methods used to support irradiations in US Material Test Reactors (MTRs). Previous research conducted through NEET ASI1-3 has shown that the MPFD technology could be made robust and was successfully tested in a reactor core. This new project will further the MPFD technology for higher temperature regimes and other reactor applications by developing a HT MPFD suitable for temperatures up to 800 °C. This report summarizes the research progress for year one of this three year project. Highlights from research accomplishments include: A joint collaboration was initiated between INL, KSU, and CEA. Note that CEA is participating at their own expense because of interest in this unique new sensor. An updated HT MPFD design was developed. New high temperature-compatible materials for HT MPFD construction were procured. Construction methods to support the new design were evaluated at INL. Laboratory evaluations of HT MPFD were initiated. Electrical contact and fissile material plating has been performed at KSU. Updated detector electronics are undergoing evaluations at KSU. A project

  16. Pellet bed reactor concepts for nuclear propulsion applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    El-Genk, Mohamed S.; Morley, Nicholas J.; Pelaccio, Dennis G.; Juhasz, Albert

    1994-11-01

    Pellet bed reactor (PeBR) concepts have been developed for nuclear thermal and nuclear electric propulsion, and bimodal applications. This annular core, fast spectrum reactor offers many desirable design and safety features. These features include high-power density, small reactor size, full retention of fission products, passive decay heat removal, redundancy in reactor control, negative temperature reactivity feedback, ground testing of the fully assembled reactor using electric heating and nonnuclear fuel elements, and the option of fueling on the launch pad or fueling and refueling in orbit. In addition to these features, the concepts for nuclear electric propulsion and for bimodal power and thermal propulsion have no single point failure. The average power density in the reactor for nuclear thermal propulsion ranges from 2.2 to 3.3 MW/I and for a 15-MWe nuclear electric propulsion system the total power system specific mass is about 3.3 kg/kWe. The bimodal-PeBR system concepts offer specific impulse in excess of 650 s, tens of Newtons of thrust, and total system specific power ranging from 11 to 21.9 We/kg at the 10- and 40-kWe levels, respectively.

  17. Low enriched uranium foil plate target for the production of fission Molybdenum-99 in Pakistan Research Reactor-1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mushtaq, A.; Iqbal, Masood; Bokhari, Ishtiaq Hussain; Mahmood, Tayyab

    2009-04-01

    Low enriched uranium foil (19.99% 235U) will be used as target material for the production of fission Molybdenum-99 in Pakistan Research Reactor-1 (PARR-1). LEU foil plate target proposed by University of Missouri Research Reactor (MURR) will be irradiated in PARR-1 for the production of 100Ci of Molybdenum-99 at the end of irradiation, which will be sufficient to prepare required 99Mo/ 99mTc generators at Pakistan Institute of Nuclear Science and Technology, Islamabad (PINSTECH) and its supply in the country. Neutronic and thermal hydraulic analysis for the fission Molybdenum-99 production at PARR-1 has been performed. Power levels in target foil plates and their corresponding irradiation time durations were initially determined by neutronic analysis to have the required neutron fluence. Finally, the thermal hydraulic analysis has been carried out for the proposed design of the target holder using LEU foil plates for fission Molybdenum-99 production at PARR-1. Data shows that LEU foil plate targets can be safely irradiated in PARR-1 for production of desired amount of fission Molybdenum-99.

  18. Description of true and delayed ternary nuclear fission accompanied by the emission of various third particles

    SciTech Connect

    Kadmensky, S. G. Kadmensky, S. S.; Lyubashevsky, D. E.

    2010-08-15

    The mechanisms and the features of the main types of nuclear ternary fission (that is, true ternary fission, in which a third particle is emitted before the rupture of the fissioning nucleus into fragments, and delayed ternary fission, in which a third particle is emitted from fission fragments going apart) are investigated within quantum-mechanical fission theory. The features of T-odd asymmetry in true ternary nuclear fission induced by cold polarized neutrons are investigated for the cases where alpha particles, prescission neutrons, and photons appear as third particles emitted by fissioning nuclei, the Coriolis interaction of the spin of the polarized fissioning nucleus with the spin of the third particle and the interference between the fission amplitudes for neutron resonances excited in the fissioning nucleus in the case of projectile-neutron capture being taken into account. For the cases where third particles emitted by fission fragments are evaporated neutrons or photons, T-odd asymmetries in delayed ternary nuclear fission induced by cold polarized neutrons are analyzed with allowance for the mechanism of pumping of large fission-fragment spins oriented orthogonally to the fragment-emission direction and with allowance for the interference between the fission amplitudes for neutron resonances.

  19. Nuclear safety criteria and specifications for space nuclear reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1982-08-01

    The purpose of this document is to define safety criteria which must be met to implement US safety policy for space fission reactors. These criteria provide the bases for decisions on the acceptability of specific mission and reactor design proposals. (JDH)

  20. An Act of Scientific Creativity: Meitner, Frisch, and Nuclear Fission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stuewer, Roger H.

    2002-04-01

    The dominant event that lay in the background to Werner Heisenberg's fateful meeting with Niels Bohr in occupied Copenhagen in September 1941 was the discovery and interpretation of nuclear fission three years earlier. Michael Frayn has explored that meeting in his play "Copenhagen" in an act of extraordinary literary creativity. In this talk I will explore Lise Meitner's and Otto Robert Frisch's interpretation of nuclear fission as an act of extraordinary scientific creativity. My aim is to understand historically how it was possible for Meitner and Frisch, and only Meitner and Frisch, to arrive at their interpretation as they talked and walked in the snow in the small Swedish village of Kungälv over the Christmas holidays in December 1938. This will require us to examine the history of the liquid-drop model of the nucleus over the preceding decade, from George Gamow's conception of that model in 1928, through Heisenberg and Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker's extension of it between 1933 and 1936, and finally through Bohr's use of it in his theory of the compound nucleus between 1936 and 1938. We will see how Meitner and Frisch combined their different knowledge of these developments creatively to arrive at their momentous interpretation of nuclear fission.

  1. Horizontal baffle for nuclear reactors

    DOEpatents

    Rylatt, John A.

    1978-01-01

    A horizontal baffle disposed in the annulus defined between the core barrel and the thermal liner of a nuclear reactor thereby physically separating the outlet region of the core from the annular area below the horizontal baffle. The horizontal baffle prevents hot coolant that has passed through the reactor core from thermally damaging apparatus located in the annulus below the horizontal baffle by utilizing the thermally induced bowing of the horizontal baffle to enhance sealing while accommodating lateral motion of the baffle base plate.

  2. Actinide incineration in fusion-fission hybrid-A model nuclear synergy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taczanowski, Stefan

    2012-06-01

    The alliance of fusion with fission is a cause worthy of great efforts, as being able to ease (if not even to solve) serious problems that both these forms of nuclear energy are facing. Very high investment costs caused by tokamak enormous size, material consumption and difficult technology put in doubt whether alone the minute demand for fuel raw material (Li) and lack of danger of uncontrolled supercriticality prove sufficient for making it competitive. Preliminary evaluations demonstrated that a radical shift of energy production i.e. the energy gain from plasma to fission blanket is feasible [1]. A reduction in the fusion component to about 2% at given system power allows for a radical drop in plasma Q down to the values of ˜0.2-0.3 achievable in small systems [2] (e.g. mirrors) of sizes comparable to fission reactors. As a result in a Fusion-Driven Actinide Incinerator (FDI) both radiations from the plasma: corpuscular (i.e. neutrons and ions) and photons are drastically reduced. Thus are too, first of all - the neutron induced radiation damage: DPA and gas production, then plasma-wall interactions. The fundamental safety of the system has been proved by simulation of its collapse that has shown preservation its subcriticality. Summarizing, all the above problems may be solved with synergic union of fusion with fission embodied in the concept of FDI - small and less expensive.

  3. On the combination of delayed neutron and delayed gamma techniques for fission rate measurement in nuclear fuel

    SciTech Connect

    Perret, G.; Jordan, K. A.

    2011-07-01

    Novel techniques to measure newly induced fissions in spent fuel after re-irradiation at low power have been developed and tested at the Proteus zero-power research reactor. The two techniques are based on the detection of high energy gamma-rays emitted by short-lived fission products and delayed neutrons. The two techniques relate the measured signals to the total fission rate, the isotopic composition of the fuel, and nuclear data. They can be combined to derive better estimates on each of these parameters. This has potential for improvement in many areas. Spent fuel characterisation and safeguard applications can benefit from these techniques for non-destructive assay of plutonium content. Another application of choice is the reduction of uncertainties on nuclear data. As a first application of the combination of the delayed neutron and gamma measurement techniques, this paper shows how to reduce the uncertainties on the relative abundances of the longest delayed neutron group for thermal fissions in {sup 235}U, {sup 239}Pu and fast fissions in {sup 238}U. The proposed experiments are easily achievable in zero-power research reactors using fresh UO{sub 2} and MOX fuel and do not require fast extraction systems. The relative uncertainties (1{sigma}) on the relative abundances are expected to be reduced from 13% to 4%, 16% to 5%, and 38% to 12% for {sup 235}U, {sup 238}U and {sup 239}Pu, respectively. (authors)

  4. 239Pu Prompt Fission Neutron Spectra Impact on a Set of Criticality and Experimental Reactor Benchmarks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peneliau, Y.; Litaize, O.; Archier, P.; De Saint Jean, C.

    2014-04-01

    A large set of nuclear data are investigated to improve the calculation predictions of the new neutron transport simulation codes. With the next generation of nuclear power plants (GEN IV projects), one expects to reduce the calculated uncertainties which are mainly coming from nuclear data and are still very important, before taking into account integral information in the adjustment process. In France, future nuclear power plant concepts will probably use MOX fuel, either in Sodium Fast Reactors or in Gas Cooled Fast Reactors. Consequently, the knowledge of 239Pu cross sections and other nuclear data is crucial issue in order to reduce these sources of uncertainty. The Prompt Fission Neutron Spectra (PFNS) for 239Pu are part of these relevant data (an IAEA working group is even dedicated to PFNS) and the work presented here deals with this particular topic. The main international data files (i.e. JEFF-3.1.1, ENDF/B-VII.0, JENDL-4.0, BRC-2009) have been considered and compared with two different spectra, coming from the works of Maslov and Kornilov respectively. The spectra are first compared by calculating their mathematical moments in order to characterize them. Then, a reference calculation using the whole JEFF-3.1.1 evaluation file is performed and compared with another calculation performed with a new evaluation file, in which the data block containing the fission spectra (MF=5, MT=18) is replaced by the investigated spectra (one for each evaluation). A set of benchmarks is used to analyze the effects of PFNS, covering criticality cases and mock-up cases in various neutron flux spectra (thermal, intermediate, and fast flux spectra). Data coming from many ICSBEP experiments are used (PU-SOL-THERM, PU-MET-FAST, PU-MET-INTER and PU-MET-MIXED) and French mock-up experiments are also investigated (EOLE for thermal neutron flux spectrum and MASURCA for fast neutron flux spectrum). This study shows that many experiments and neutron parameters are very sensitive to

  5. Completely automated nuclear reactors for long-term operation

    SciTech Connect

    Teller, E.; Ishikawa, M.; Wood, L.

    1996-01-01

    The authors discuss new types of nuclear fission reactors optimized for the generation of high-temperature heat for exceedingly safe, economic, and long-duration electricity production in large, long-lived central power stations. These reactors are quite different in design, implementation and operation from conventional light-water-cooled and -moderated reactors (LWRs) currently in widespread use, which were scaled-up from submarine nuclear propulsion reactors. They feature an inexpensive initial fuel loading which lasts the entire 30-year design life of the power-plant. The reactor contains a core comprised of a nuclear ignitor and a nuclear burn-wave propagating region comprised of natural thorium or uranium, a pressure shell for coolant transport purposes, and automatic emergency heat-dumping means to obviate concerns regarding loss-of-coolant accidents during the plant`s operational and post-operational life. These reactors are proposed to be situated in suitable environments at {approximately}100 meter depths underground, and their operation is completely automatic, with no moving parts and no human access during or after its operational lifetime, in order to avoid both error and misuse. The power plant`s heat engine and electrical generator subsystems are located above-ground.

  6. Role of fast reactor and its cycle to reduce nuclear waste burden

    SciTech Connect

    Arie, Kazuo; Oomori, Takashi; Okita, Takeshi; Kawashima, Masatoshi; Kotake, Shoji; Fuji-ie, Yoichi

    2013-07-01

    The role of the metal fuel fast reactor with recycling of actinides and the five long-lived fission products based on the concept of the Self-Consistent Nuclear Energy System has been examined by evaluating the reduction of nuclear wastes during the transition period to this reactor system. The evaluation was done in comparison to an LWR once-through case and a conventional actinide recycling oxide fast reactor. As a result, it is quantitatively clarified that a metal fuel fast reactor with actinide and the five long-lived fission products (I{sup 129}, Tc{sup 99}, Zr{sup 93}, Cs{sup 135} and Sn{sup 126}) recycling could play a significant role in reducing the nuclear waste burden including the current LWR wastes. This can be achieved by using a fast neutron spectrum reactor enhanced with metal fuel that brings high capability as a 'waste burner'. (authors)

  7. The Politics of Forgetting: Otto Hahn and the German Nuclear-Fission Project in World War II

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sime, Ruth Lewin

    2012-03-01

    As the co-discoverer of nuclear fission and director of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Chemistry, Otto Hahn (1879-1968) took part in Germany`s nuclear-fission project throughout the Second World War. I outline Hahn's efforts to mobilize his institute for military-related research; his inclusion in high-level scientific structures of the military and the state; and his institute's research programs in neutron physics, isotope separation, transuranium elements, and fission products, all of potential military importance for a bomb or a reactor and almost all of it secret. These activities are contrasted with Hahn's deliberate misrepresentations after the war, when he claimed that his wartime work had been nothing but "purely scientific" fundamental research that was openly published and of no military relevance.

  8. Flow duct for nuclear reactors

    DOEpatents

    Straalsund, Jerry L.

    1978-01-01

    Improved liquid sodium flow ducts for nuclear reactors are described wherein the improvement comprises varying the wall thickness of each of the walls of a polygonal tubular duct structure so that each of the walls is of reduced cross-section along the longitudinal center line and of a greater cross-section along wall junctions with the other walls to form the polygonal tubular configuration.

  9. NUCLEAR REACTOR COMPENENT CLADDING MATERIAL

    DOEpatents

    Draley, J.E.; Ruther, W.E.

    1959-01-27

    Fuel elements and coolant tubes used in nuclear reactors of the heterogeneous, water-cooled type are described, wherein the coolant tubes extend through the moderator and are adapted to contain the fuel elements. The invention comprises forming the coolant tubes and the fuel element cladding material from an alloy of aluminum and nickel, or an alloy of aluminum, nickel, alloys are selected to prevent intergranular corrosion of these components by water at temperatures up to 35O deg C.

  10. DIRECT ENERGY CONVERSION FISSION REACTOR FOR THE PERIOD JANUARY 1, 2002 THROUGH MARCH 31, 2002

    SciTech Connect

    L.C. BROWN

    2002-03-31

    Direct energy conversion is the only potential means for producing electrical energy from a fission reactor without the Carnot efficiency limitations. This project was undertaken by Sandia National Laboratories, Los Alamos National Laboratories, The University of Florida, Texas A&M University and General Atomics to explore the possibilities of direct energy conversion. Other means of producing electrical energy from a fission reactor, without any moving parts, are also within the statement of proposed work. This report documents the efforts of General Atomics. Sandia National Laboratories, the lead laboratory, provides overall project reporting and documentation. The highlights of this reporting period are: (1) Cooling of the vapor core reactor and the MHD generator was incorporated into the Vapor Core Reactor model using standard heat transfer calculation methods. (2) Fission product removal, previously modeled as independent systems for each class of fission product, was incorporated into the overall fuel recycle loop of the Vapor Core Reactor. The model showed that the circulating activity levels are quite low. (3) Material distribution calculations were made for the ''pom-pom'' style cathode for the Fission Electric Cell. Use of a pom-pom cathode will eliminate the problem of hoop stress in the thin spherical cathode caused by the electric field.

  11. Recoil release of fission products from nuclear fuel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wise, C.

    1985-10-01

    An analytical approximation is developed for calculating recoil release from nuclear fuel into gas filled interspaces. This expression is evaluated for a number of interspace geometries and shown to be generally accurate to within about 10% by comparison with numerical calculations. The results are applied to situations of physical interest and it is demonstrated that recoil can be important when modelling fission product release from low temperature CAGR pin failures. Furthermore, recoil can contribute significantly in experiments on low temperature fission product release, particularly where oxidation enhancement of this release is measured by exposing the fuel to CO 2. The calculations presented here are one way of allowing for this, other methods are suggested.

  12. Fission-fragment nuclear lasing of Ar/He/-Xe

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    De Young, R. J.; Shiu, Y. J.; Williams, M. D.

    1980-01-01

    Nuclear-pumped lasing of Ar-Xe and He-Xe has been demonstrated using (U-235)F6 fission-fragment excitation. Fission fragments were created by absorption of thermal neutrons in a combination of gaseous (U-235)F6 and laser-tube wall coatings formed from UF6 chemical reaction products. At a pressure of 600 torr Ar-(3%)Xe, lasing occurred at 2.65 microns in Xe. Up to 3 torr of gaseous (U-235)F6 was added to 600 torr Ar-Xe before serious laser quenching occurred. With 3 torr of (U-235)F6 added, 38% of the energy deposition came from gaseous UF6 and the remainder from the uranium wall coating. The neutron flux at lasing threshold was found to be 4 x 10 to the 15th n/sq cm sec.

  13. Passive cooling system for liquid metal cooled nuclear reactors with backup coolant flow path

    DOEpatents

    Hunsbedt, Anstein; Boardman, Charles E.

    1993-01-01

    A liquid metal cooled nuclear fission reactor plant having a passive auxiliary safety cooling system for removing residual heat resulting from fuel decay during reactor shutdown, or heat produced during a mishap. This reactor plant is enhanced by a backup or secondary passive safety cooling system which augments the primary passive auxiliary cooling system when in operation, and replaces the primary system when rendered inoperable.

  14. Ultrahigh temperature vapor core reactor-MHD system for space nuclear electric power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maya, Isaac; Anghaie, Samim; Diaz, Nils J.; Dugan, Edward T.

    1991-01-01

    The conceptual design of a nuclear space power system based on the ultrahigh temperature vapor core reactor with MHD energy conversion is presented. This UF4 fueled gas core cavity reactor operates at 4000 K maximum core temperature and 40 atm. Materials experiments, conducted with UF4 up to 2200 K, demonstrate acceptable compatibility with tungsten-molybdenum-, and carbon-based materials. The supporting nuclear, heat transfer, fluid flow and MHD analysis, and fissioning plasma physics experiments are also discussed.

  15. Studies on the properties of hard-spectrum, actinide fissioning reactors. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Nelson, J.B.; Prichard, A.W.; Schofield, P.E.; Robinson, A.H.; Spinrad, B.I.

    1980-01-01

    It is technically feasible to construct an operable (e.g., safe and stable) reactor to burn waste actinides rapidly. The heart of the concept is a driver core of EBR-II type, with a central radial target zone in which fuel elements, made entirely of waste actinides are exposed. This target fuel undergoes fission, as a result of which actinides are rapidly destroyed. Although the same result could be achieved in more conventionally designed LWR or LMFBR systems, the fast spectrum reactor does a much more efficient job, by virtue of the fact that in both LWR and LMFBR reactors, actinide fission is preceded by several captures before a fissile nuclide is formed. In the fast spectrum reactor that is called ABR (actinide burning reactor), these neutron captures are short-circuited.

  16. Reactivity control assembly for nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Bollinger, Lawrence R.

    1984-01-01

    Reactivity control assembly for nuclear reactor comprises supports stacked above reactor core for holding control rods. Couplers associated with the supports and a vertically movable drive shaft have lugs at their lower ends for engagement with the supports.

  17. Results of a first generation least expensive approach to fission module tests: Non-nuclear testing of a fission system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Dyke, Melissa; Godfroy, Tom; Houts, Mike; Dickens, Ricky; Dobson, Chris; Pederson, Kevin; Reid, Bob; Sena, J. Tom

    2000-01-01

    The use of resistance heaters to simulate heat from fission allows extensive development of fission systems to be performed in non-nuclear test facilities, saving time and money. Resistance heated tests on the Module Unfueled Thermal-hydraulic Test (MUTT) article has been performed at the Marshall Space Flight Center. This paper discusses the results of these experiments to date, and describes the additional testing that will be performed. Recommendations related to the design of testable space fission power and propulsion systems are made. .

  18. Nuclear fission: reaction to the discovery in 1939

    SciTech Connect

    Badash, L.; Hodes, E.; Tiddens, A.

    1985-01-01

    Historical aspects of the behavior of scientists in the aftermath of the discovery of nuclear fission are presented. An extensive background section is given which documents the worldwide discussion of atomic energy over the preceding four decades. A second section briefly surveys the research highlights of 1939. The third section examines the reactions of scientists, primarily in the United States, and includes coverage by newspapers, magazines and radio. The final section includes a number of themes to explain why there was little acknowledgment of the potential of the bomb to affect personal morality, the scientific community and international relations.

  19. Direct nuclear pumping by a volume source of fission fragments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Deese, J. E.; Hassan, H. A.

    1978-01-01

    A detailed kinetic model is presented for the analysis of nuclear pumped lasers when the pumping is a result of a volume source of fission fragments. The results of the model are employed to study a He-3 - Xe laser. For the range of pressures, neutron fluxes and mixtures considered, the gain and power calculations are in good agreement with experiment. Moreover, based on these calculations, it appears that the collisional recombination is the dominant pumping mechanism for 7p-7s transitions while direct excitation is the dominant pumping mechanism for the 5d-6p transitions.

  20. Reactor Fuel Isotopics and Code Validation for Nuclear Applications

    SciTech Connect

    Francis, Matthew W.; Weber, Charles F.; Pigni, Marco T.; Gauld, Ian C.

    2015-02-01

    Experimentally measured isotopic concentrations of well characterized spent nuclear fuel (SNF) samples have been collected and analyzed by previous researchers. These sets of experimental data have been used extensively to validate the accuracy of depletion code predictions for given sets of burnups, initial enrichments, and varying power histories for different reactor types. The purpose of this report is to present the diversity of data in a concise manner and summarize the current accuracy of depletion modeling. All calculations performed for this report were done using the Oak Ridge Isotope GENeration (ORIGEN) code, an internationally used irradiation and decay code solver within the SCALE comprehensive modeling and simulation code. The diversity of data given in this report includes key actinides, stable fission products, and radioactive fission products. In general, when using the current ENDF/B-VII.0 nuclear data libraries in SCALE, the major actinides are predicted to within 5% of the measured values. Large improvements were seen for several of the curium isotopes when using improved cross section data found in evaluated nuclear data file ENDF/B-VII.0 as compared to ENDF/B-V-based results. The impact of the flux spectrum on the plutonium isotope concentrations as a function of burnup was also shown. The general accuracy noted for the actinide samples for reactor types with burnups greater than 5,000 MWd/MTU was not observed for the low-burnup Hanford B samples. More work is needed in understanding these large discrepancies. The stable neodymium and samarium isotopes were predicted to within a few percent of the measured values. Large improvements were seen in prediction for a few of the samarium isotopes when using the ENDF/B-VII.0 libraries compared to results obtained with ENDF/B-V libraries. Very accurate predictions were obtained for 133Cs and 153Eu. However, the predicted values for the stable ruthenium and rhodium isotopes varied

  1. Metallic Fast Reactor Fuel Fabrication for Global Nuclear Energy Partnership

    SciTech Connect

    Douglas E. Burkes; Randall S. Fielding; Douglas L. Porter

    2009-07-01

    Fast reactors are once again being considered for nuclear power generation, in addition to transmutation of long-lived fission products resident in spent nuclear fuels. This re-consideration follows with intense developmental programs for both fuel and reactor design. One of the two leading candidates for next generation fast reactor fuel is metal alloys, resulting primarily from the successes achieved in the 1960s to early 1990s with both the experimental breeding reactor-II and the fast flux test facility. The goal of the current program is to develop and qualify a nuclear fuel system that performs all of the functions of a conventional, fast-spectrum nuclear fuel while destroying recycled actinides, thereby closing the nuclear fuel cycle. In order to meet this goal, the program must develop efficient and safe fuel fabrication processes designed for remote operation. This paper provides an overview of advanced casting processes investigated in the past, and the development of a gaseous diffusion calculation that demonstrates how straightforward process parameter modification can mitigate the loss of volatile minor actinides in the metal alloy melt.

  2. STEAM STIRRED HOMOGENEOUS NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Busey, H.M.

    1958-06-01

    A homogeneous nuclear reactor utilizing a selfcirculating liquid fuel is described. The reactor vessel is in the form of a vertically disposed tubular member having the lower end closed by the tube walls and the upper end closed by a removal fianged assembly. A spherical reaction shell is located in the lower end of the vessel and spaced from the inside walls. The reaction shell is perforated on its lower surface and is provided with a bundle of small-diameter tubes extending vertically upward from its top central portion. The reactor vessel is surrounded in the region of the reaction shell by a neutron reflector. The liquid fuel, which may be a solution of enriched uranyl sulfate in ordinary or heavy water, is mainiained at a level within the reactor vessel of approximately the top of the tubes. The heat of the reaction which is created in the critical region within the spherical reaction shell forms steam bubbles which more upwardly through the tubes. The upward movement of these bubbles results in the forcing of the liquid fuel out of the top of these tubes, from where the fuel passes downwardly in the space between the tubes and the vessel wall where it is cooled by heat exchangers. The fuel then re-enters the critical region in the reaction shell through the perforations in the bottom. The upper portion of the reactor vessel is provided with baffles to prevent the liquid fuel from splashing into this region which is also provided with a recombiner apparatus for recombining the radiolytically dissociated moderator vapor and a control means.

  3. FUEL ELEMENTS FOR NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Blainey, A.; Lloyd, H.

    1961-07-11

    A method of sheathing a tubular fuel element for a nuclear reactor is described. A low melting metal core member is centered in a die, a layer of a powdered sheathing substance is placed on the bottom of the die, the tubular fuel element is inserted in the die, the space between the tubular fuel element and the die walls and core member is filled with the same powdered sheathing substance, a layer of the same substance is placed over the fissile material, and the charge within the die is subjected to pressure in the direction of the axis of the fuel element at the sintering temperature of the protective substance.

  4. Particle bed reactor central to SDI nuclear rocket project

    SciTech Connect

    Asker, J.R.

    1991-04-01

    A classified SDI project designated 'Timberwind' and funded with an estimated $7-8 billion over the project's life is charged with the development and flight testing of nuclear reactor-powered rockets. Timberwind's novel 'particle-bed reactor' technology will employ small pellets of reactor fuel to heat a low molecular weight working fluid, such as hydrogen. The fuel pellets would be 0.5 mm in diameter and may be composed of a kernel of fissionable U together with a carbon alloy, coated by layers of carbon and a sealant. A covering of zirconium carbide would prevent chemical degradation of the pellets by the hydrogen working fluid. Performace projection comparisons are conducted for Timberwind, an advanced Atlas-Centaur, and an advanced Titan launch vehicle.

  5. Primary system fission product release and transport: A state-of-the-art report to the committee on the safety of nuclear installations

    SciTech Connect

    Wright, A.L.

    1994-06-01

    This report presents a summary of the status of research activities associated with fission product behavior (release and transport) under severe accident conditions within the primary systems of water-moderated and water-cooled nuclear reactors. For each of the areas of fission product release and fission product transport, the report summarizes relevant information on important phenomena, major experiments performed, relevant computer models and codes, comparisons of computer code calculations with experimental results, and general conclusions on the overall state of the art. Finally, the report provides an assessment of the overall importance and knowledge of primary system release and transport phenomena and presents major conclusions on the state of the art.

  6. Neutron Capture and the Antineutrino Yield from Nuclear Reactors.

    PubMed

    Huber, Patrick; Jaffke, Patrick

    2016-03-25

    We identify a new, flux-dependent correction to the antineutrino spectrum as produced in nuclear reactors. The abundance of certain nuclides, whose decay chains produce antineutrinos above the threshold for inverse beta decay, has a nonlinear dependence on the neutron flux, unlike the vast majority of antineutrino producing nuclides, whose decay rate is directly related to the fission rate. We have identified four of these so-called nonlinear nuclides and determined that they result in an antineutrino excess at low energies below 3.2 MeV, dependent on the reactor thermal neutron flux. We develop an analytic model for the size of the correction and compare it to the results of detailed reactor simulations for various real existing reactors, spanning 3 orders of magnitude in neutron flux. In a typical pressurized water reactor the resulting correction can reach ∼0.9% of the low energy flux which is comparable in size to other, known low-energy corrections from spent nuclear fuel and the nonequilibrium correction. For naval reactors the nonlinear correction may reach the 5% level by the end of cycle. PMID:27058075

  7. Neutron Capture and the Antineutrino Yield from Nuclear Reactors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huber, Patrick; Jaffke, Patrick

    2016-03-01

    We identify a new, flux-dependent correction to the antineutrino spectrum as produced in nuclear reactors. The abundance of certain nuclides, whose decay chains produce antineutrinos above the threshold for inverse beta decay, has a nonlinear dependence on the neutron flux, unlike the vast majority of antineutrino producing nuclides, whose decay rate is directly related to the fission rate. We have identified four of these so-called nonlinear nuclides and determined that they result in an antineutrino excess at low energies below 3.2 MeV, dependent on the reactor thermal neutron flux. We develop an analytic model for the size of the correction and compare it to the results of detailed reactor simulations for various real existing reactors, spanning 3 orders of magnitude in neutron flux. In a typical pressurized water reactor the resulting correction can reach ˜0.9 % of the low energy flux which is comparable in size to other, known low-energy corrections from spent nuclear fuel and the nonequilibrium correction. For naval reactors the nonlinear correction may reach the 5% level by the end of cycle.

  8. Simulated nuclear reactor fuel assembly

    DOEpatents

    Berta, V.T.

    1993-04-06

    An apparatus for electrically simulating a nuclear reactor fuel assembly. It includes a heater assembly having a top end and a bottom end and a plurality of concentric heater tubes having electrical circuitry connected to a power source, and radially spaced from each other. An outer target tube and an inner target tube is concentric with the heater tubes and with each other, and the outer target tube surrounds and is radially spaced from the heater tubes. The inner target tube is surrounded by and radially spaced from the heater tubes and outer target tube. The top of the assembly is generally open to allow for the electrical power connection to the heater tubes, and the bottom of the assembly includes means for completing the electrical circuitry in the heater tubes to provide electrical resistance heating to simulate the power profile in a nuclear reactor. The embedded conductor elements in each heater tube is split into two halves for a substantial portion of its length and provided with electrical isolation such that each half of the conductor is joined at one end and is not joined at the other end.

  9. Simulated nuclear reactor fuel assembly

    DOEpatents

    Berta, Victor T.

    1993-01-01

    An apparatus for electrically simulating a nuclear reactor fuel assembly. It includes a heater assembly having a top end and a bottom end and a plurality of concentric heater tubes having electrical circuitry connected to a power source, and radially spaced from each other. An outer target tube and an inner target tube is concentric with the heater tubes and with each other, and the outer target tube surrounds and is radially spaced from the heater tubes. The inner target tube is surrounded by and radially spaced from the heater tubes and outer target tube. The top of the assembly is generally open to allow for the electrical power connection to the heater tubes, and the bottom of the assembly includes means for completing the electrical circuitry in the heater tubes to provide electrical resistance heating to simulate the power profile in a nuclear reactor. The embedded conductor elements in each heater tube is split into two halves for a substantial portion of its length and provided with electrical isolation such that each half of the conductor is joined at one end and is not joined at the other end.

  10. Licensed reactor nuclear safety criteria applicable to DOE reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-04-01

    The Department of Energy (DOE) Order DOE 5480.6, Safety of Department of Energy-Owned Nuclear Reactors, establishes reactor safety requirements to assure that reactors are sited, designed, constructed, modified, operated, maintained, and decommissioned in a manner that adequately protects health and safety and is in accordance with uniform standards, guides, and codes which are consistent with those applied to comparable licensed reactors. This document identifies nuclear safety criteria applied to NRC (Nuclear Regulatory Commission) licensed reactors. The titles of the chapters and sections of USNRC Regulatory Guide 1.70, Standard Format and Content of Safety Analysis Reports for Nuclear Power Plants, Rev. 3, are used as the format for compiling the NRC criteria applied to the various areas of nuclear safety addressed in a safety analysis report for a nuclear reactor. In each section the criteria are compiled in four groups: (1) Code of Federal Regulations, (2) US NRC Regulatory Guides, SRP Branch Technical Positions and Appendices, (3) Codes and Standards, and (4) Supplemental Information. The degree of application of these criteria to a DOE-owned reactor, consistent with their application to comparable licensed reactors, must be determined by the DOE and DOE contractor.

  11. Inception and evolution of Oklo natural nuclear reactors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bentridi, Salah-Eddine; Gall, Benoît; Gauthier-Lafaye, François; Seghour, Abdeslam; Medjadi, Djamel-Eddine

    2011-11-01

    The occurrence of more than 15 natural nuclear Reactor Zones (RZ) in a geological environment remains a mystery even 40 years after their discovery. The present work gives for the first time an explanation of the chemical and physical processes that caused the start-up of the fission reactions with two opposite processes, uranium enrichments and progressive impoverishment in 235U. Based on Monte-Carlo neutronics simulations, a solution space was defined taking into account realistic combinations of relevant parameters acting on geological conditions and neutron transport physics. This study explains criticality occurrence, operation, expansion and end of life conditions of Oklo natural nuclear reactors, from the smallest to the biggest ones.

  12. Markets for reactor-produced non-fission radioisotopes

    SciTech Connect

    Bennett, R.G.

    1995-01-01

    Current market segments for reactor produced radioisotopes are developed and reported from a review of current literature. Specific radioisotopes studied in is report are the primarily selected from those with major medical or industrial markets, or those expected to have strongly emerging markets. Relative market sizes are indicated. Special emphasis is given to those radioisotopes that are best matched to production in high flux reactors such as the Advanced Test Reactor (ATR) at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory or the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR) at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory. A general bibliography of medical and industrial radioisotope applications, trends, and historical notes is included.

  13. Radioactive fallout from the Chernobyl nuclear reactor accident

    SciTech Connect

    Beiriger, J.M.; Failor, R.A.; Marsh, K.V.; Shaw, G.E.

    1987-03-23

    Following the accident at the nuclear reactor at Chernobyl, in the Soviet Union on April 26, 1986, we performed a variety of measurements to determine the level of the radioactive fallout on the western United States. We used gamma-spectroscopy to analyze air filters from the areas around Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), California, and Barrow and Fairbanks, Alaska. Milk from California and imported vegetables were also analyzed. The levels of the various fission products detected were far below the maximum permissible concentration levels.

  14. FABRICATION OF TUBE TYPE FUEL ELEMENT FOR NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Loeb, E.; Nicklas, J.H.

    1959-02-01

    A method of fabricating a nuclear reactor fuel element is given. It consists essentially of fixing two tubes in concentric relationship with respect to one another to provide an annulus therebetween, filling the annulus with a fissionablematerial-containing powder, compacting the powder material within the annulus and closing the ends thereof. The powder material is further compacted by swaging the inner surface of the inner tube to increase its diameter while maintaining the original size of the outer tube. This process results in reduced fabrication costs of powdered fissionable material type fuel elements and a substantial reduction in the peak core temperatures while materially enhancing the heat removal characteristics.

  15. Fuel subassembly leak test chamber for a nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Divona, Charles J.

    1978-04-04

    A container with a valve at one end is inserted into a nuclear reactor coolant pool. Once in the pool, the valve is opened by a mechanical linkage. An individual fuel subassembly is lifted into the container by a gripper; the valve is then closed providing an isolated chamber for the subassembly. A vacuum is drawn on the chamber to encourage gaseous fission product leakage through any defects in the cladding of the fuel rods comprising the subassembly; this leakage may be detected by instrumentation, and the need for replacement of the assembly ascertained.

  16. Deposition of fission and activation products after the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant accident.

    PubMed

    Shozugawa, Katsumi; Nogawa, Norio; Matsuo, Motoyuki

    2012-04-01

    The Great Eastern Japan Earthquake on March 11, 2011, damaged reactor cooling systems at Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant. The subsequent venting operation and hydrogen explosion resulted in a large radioactive nuclide emission from reactor containers into the environment. Here, we collected environmental samples such as soil, plant species, and water on April 10, 2011, in front of the power plant main gate as well as 35 km away in Iitate village, and observed gamma-rays with a Ge(Li) semiconductor detector. We observed activation products ((239)Np and (59)Fe) and fission products ((131)I, (134)Cs ((133)Cs), (137)Cs, (110m)Ag ((109)Ag), (132)Te, (132)I, (140)Ba, (140)La, (91)Sr, (91)Y, (95)Zr, and (95)Nb). (239)Np is the parent nuclide of (239)Pu; (59)Fe are presumably activation products of (58)Fe obtained by corrosion of cooling pipes. The results show that these activation and fission products, diffused within a month of the accident. PMID:22266366

  17. Licensed reactor nuclear safety criteria applicable to DOE reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1993-11-01

    This document is a compilation and source list of nuclear safety criteria that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) applies to licensed reactors; it can be used by DOE and DOE contractors to identify NRC criteria to be evaluated for application to the DOE reactors under their cognizance. The criteria listed are those that are applied to the areas of nuclear safety addressed in the safety analysis report of a licensed reactor. They are derived from federal regulations, USNRC regulatory guides, Standard Review Plan (SRP) branch technical positions and appendices, and industry codes and standards.

  18. Antineutrino analysis for continuous monitoring of nuclear reactors: Sensitivity study

    SciTech Connect

    Stewart, Christopher; Erickson, Anna

    2015-10-28

    This paper explores the various contributors to uncertainty on predictions of the antineutrino source term which is used for reactor antineutrino experiments and is proposed as a safeguard mechanism for future reactor installations. The errors introduced during simulation of the reactor burnup cycle from variation in nuclear reaction cross sections, operating power, and other factors are combined with those from experimental and predicted antineutrino yields, resulting from fissions, evaluated, and compared. The most significant contributor to uncertainty on the reactor antineutrino source term when the reactor was modeled in 3D fidelity with assembly-level heterogeneity was found to be the uncertainty on the antineutrino yields. Using the reactor simulation uncertainty data, the dedicated observation of a rigorously modeled small, fast reactor by a few-ton near-field detector was estimated to offer reduction of uncertainty on antineutrino yields in the 3.0–6.5 MeV range to a few percent for the primary power-producing fuel isotopes, even with zero prior knowledge of the yields.

  19. Antineutrino analysis for continuous monitoring of nuclear reactors: Sensitivity study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stewart, Christopher; Erickson, Anna

    2015-10-01

    This paper explores the various contributors to uncertainty on predictions of the antineutrino source term which is used for reactor antineutrino experiments and is proposed as a safeguard mechanism for future reactor installations. The errors introduced during simulation of the reactor burnup cycle from variation in nuclear reaction cross sections, operating power, and other factors are combined with those from experimental and predicted antineutrino yields, resulting from fissions, evaluated, and compared. The most significant contributor to uncertainty on the reactor antineutrino source term when the reactor was modeled in 3D fidelity with assembly-level heterogeneity was found to be the uncertainty on the antineutrino yields. Using the reactor simulation uncertainty data, the dedicated observation of a rigorously modeled small, fast reactor by a few-ton near-field detector was estimated to offer reduction of uncertainty on antineutrino yields in the 3.0-6.5 MeV range to a few percent for the primary power-producing fuel isotopes, even with zero prior knowledge of the yields.

  20. Recovery of cesium and palladium from nuclear reactor fuel processing waste

    DOEpatents

    Campbell, David O.

    1976-01-01

    A method of recovering cesium and palladium values from nuclear reactor fission product waste solution involves contacting the solution with a source of chloride ions and oxidizing palladium ions present in the solution to precipitate cesium and palladium as Cs.sub.2 PdCl.sub.6.

  1. Table of superdeformed nuclear bands and fission isomers

    SciTech Connect

    Firestone, R.B.; Singh, B.

    1994-06-01

    A minimum in the second potential well of deformed nuclei was predicted and the associated shell gaps are illustrated in the harmonic oscillator potential shell energy surface calculations shown in this report. A strong superdeformed minimum in {sup 152}Dy was predicted for {beta}{sub 2}-0.65. Subsequently, a discrete set of {gamma}-ray transitions in {sup 152}DY was observed and, assigned to the predicted superdeformed band. Extensive research at several laboratories has since focused on searching for other mass regions of large deformation. A new generation of {gamma}-ray detector arrays is already producing a wealth of information about the mechanisms for feeding and deexciting superdeformed bands. These bands have been found in three distinct regions near A=l30, 150, and 190. This research extends upon previous work in the actinide region near A=240 where fission isomers were identified and also associated with the second potential well. Quadrupole moment measurements for selected cases in each mass region are consistent with assigning the bands to excitations in the second local minimum. As part of our committment to maintain nuclear structure data as current as possible in the Evaluated Nuclear Structure Reference File (ENSDF) and the Table of Isotopes, we have updated the information on superdeformed nuclear bands. As of April 1994, we have complied data from 86 superdeformed bands and 46 fission isomers identified in 73 nuclides for this report. For each nuclide there is a complete level table listing both normal and superdeformed band assignments; level energy, spin, parity, half-life, magneto moments, decay branchings; and the energies, final levels, relative intensities, multipolarities, and mixing ratios for transitions deexciting each level. Mass excess, decay energies, and proton and neutron separation energies are also provided from the evaluation of Audi and Wapstra.

  2. Non-equilibrium radiation nuclear reactor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thom, K.; Schneider, R. T. (Inventor)

    1978-01-01

    An externally moderated thermal nuclear reactor is disclosed which is designed to provide output power in the form of electromagnetic radiation. The reactor is a gaseous fueled nuclear cavity reactor device which can operate over wide ranges of temperature and pressure, and which includes the capability of processing and recycling waste products such as long-lived transuranium actinides. The primary output of the device may be in the form of coherent radiation, so that the reactor may be utilized as a self-critical nuclear pumped laser.

  3. Measurement/Evaluation Techniques and Nuclear Data Associated with Fission of 239Pu by Fission Spectrum Neutrons

    SciTech Connect

    Baisden, P; Bauge, E; Ferguson, J; Gilliam, D; Granier, T; Jeanloz, R; McMillan, C; Robertson, D; Thompson, P; Verdon, C; Wilkerson, C; Young, P

    2010-03-16

    This Panel was chartered to review and assess new evaluations of work on fission product data, as well as the evaluation process used by the two U.S. nuclear weapons physics laboratories. The work focuses on fission product yields resulting from fission spectrum neutrons incident on plutonium, and includes data from measurements that had not been previously published as well as new or revised fission product cumulative yield data, and related quantities such as Q values and R values. This report documents the Panel's assessment of the work presented by Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). Based on the work presented we have seven key observations: (1) Experiments conducted in the 1970s at LANL, some of which were performed in association with a larger, NIST-led, program, have recently been documented. A preliminary assessment of this work, which will be referred to in this document as ILRR-LANL, shows it to be technically sound. (2) LLNL has done a thorough, unbiased review and evaluation of the available literature and is in the process of incorporating the previously unavailable LANL data into its evaluation of key fission product yields. The results of the LLNL effort, which includes a preliminary evaluation of the ILRR-LANL data, have been documented. (3) LANL has also conducted an evaluation of fission product yields for fission spectrum neutrons on plutonium including a meta-analysis of benchmark data as part of a planned upgrade to the ENDF/B compilation. We found that the approach of using meta-analysis provides valuable additional insight for evaluating the sparse data sets involved in this assessment. (4) Both laboratories have provided convincing evidence for energy dependence in the fission product yield of {sup 147}Nd produced from the bombardment of {sup 239}Pu with fission spectrum neutrons over an incident neutron energy range of 0.2 to 1.9 MeV. (5) Consistent, complete, and explicit treatment of

  4. On-site gamma-ray spectroscopic measurements of fission gas release in irradiated nuclear fuel.

    PubMed

    Matsson, I; Grapengiesser, B; Andersson, B

    2007-01-01

    An experimental, non-destructive in-pool, method for measuring fission gas release (FGR) in irradiated nuclear fuel has been developed. Using the method, a significant number of experiments have been performed in-pool at several nuclear power plants of the BWR type. The method utilises the 514 keV gamma-radiation from the gaseous fission product (85)Kr captured in the fuel rod plenum volume. A submergible measuring device (LOKET) consisting of an HPGe-detector and a collimator system was utilised allowing for single rod measurements on virtually all types of BWR fuel. A FGR database covering a wide range of burn-ups (up to average rod burn-up well above 60 MWd/kgU), irradiation history, fuel rod position in cross section and fuel designs has been compiled and used for computer code benchmarking, fuel performance analysis and feedback to reactor operators. Measurements clearly indicate the low FGR in more modern fuel designs in comparison to older fuel types. PMID:16949295

  5. Nuclear reactor internals alignment configuration

    DOEpatents

    Gilmore, Charles B.; Singleton, Norman R.

    2009-11-10

    An alignment system that employs jacking block assemblies and alignment posts around the periphery of the top plate of a nuclear reactor lower internals core shroud to align an upper core plate with the lower internals and the core shroud with the core barrel. The distal ends of the alignment posts are chamfered and are closely received within notches machined in the upper core plate at spaced locations around the outer circumference of the upper core plate. The jacking block assemblies are used to center the core shroud in the core barrel and the alignment posts assure the proper orientation of the upper core plate. The alignment posts may alternately be formed in the upper core plate and the notches may be formed in top plate.

  6. NUCLEAR REACTOR FUEL ELEMENT ASSEMBLY

    DOEpatents

    Stengel, F.G.

    1963-12-24

    A method of fabricating nuclear reactor fuel element assemblies having a plurality of longitudinally extending flat fuel elements in spaced parallel relation to each other to form channels is presented. One side of a flat side plate is held contiguous to the ends of the elements and a welding means is passed along the other side of the platertransverse to the direction of the longitudinal extension of the elements. The setting and speed of travel of the welding means is set to cause penetration of the side plate with welds at bridge the gap in each channel between adjacent fuel elements with a weld-through bubble of predetermined size. The fabrication of a high strength, dependable fuel element is provided, and the reduction of distortion and high production costs are facilitated by this method. (AEC)

  7. Nuclear reactor composite fuel assembly

    DOEpatents

    Burgess, Donn M.; Marr, Duane R.; Cappiello, Michael W.; Omberg, Ronald P.

    1980-01-01

    A core and composite fuel assembly for a liquid-cooled breeder nuclear reactor including a plurality of elongated coextending driver and breeder fuel elements arranged to form a generally polygonal bundle within a thin-walled duct. The breeder elements are larger in cross section than the driver elements, and each breeder element is laterally bounded by a number of the driver elements. Each driver element further includes structure for spacing the driver elements from adjacent fuel elements and, where adjacent, the thin-walled duct. A core made up of the fuel elements can advantageously include fissile fuel of only one enrichment, while varying the effective enrichment of any given assembly or core region, merely by varying the relative number and size of the driver and breeder elements.

  8. High flux Particle Bed Reactor systems for rapid transmutation of actinides and long lived fission products

    SciTech Connect

    Powell, J.; Ludewig, H.; Maise, G.; Steinberg, M.; Todosow, M.

    1993-08-01

    An initial assessment of several actinide/LLFP burner concepts based on the Particle Bed Reactor (PBR) is described. The high power density/flux level achievable with the PBR make it an attractive candidate for this application. The PBR based actinide burner concept also possesses a number of safety and economic benefits relative to other reactor based transmutation approaches including a low inventory of radionuclides, and high integrity, coated fuel particles which can withstand extremely high in temperatures while retaining virtually all fission products. In addition the reactor also posesses a number of ``engineered safety features,`` which, along with the use of high temperature capable materials further enhance its safety characteristics.

  9. Liquid metal cooled nuclear reactor plant system

    DOEpatents

    Hunsbedt, Anstein; Boardman, Charles E.

    1993-01-01

    A liquid metal cooled nuclear reactor having a passive cooling system for removing residual heat resulting for fuel decay during reactor shutdown, or heat produced during a mishap. The reactor system is enhanced with sealing means for excluding external air from contact with the liquid metal coolant leaking from the reactor vessel during an accident. The invention also includes a silo structure which resists attack by leaking liquid metal coolant, and an added unique cooling means.

  10. Digital computer operation of a nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Colley, Robert W.

    1984-01-01

    A method is described for the safe operation of a complex system such as a nuclear reactor using a digital computer. The computer is supplied with a data base containing a list of the safe state of the reactor and a list of operating instructions for achieving a safe state when the actual state of the reactor does not correspond to a listed safe state, the computer selects operating instructions to return the reactor to a safe state.

  11. Digital computer operation of a nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Colley, R.W.

    1982-06-29

    A method is described for the safe operation of a complex system such as a nuclear reactor using a digital computer. The computer is supplied with a data base containing a list of the safe state of the reactor and a list of operating instructions for achieving a safe state when the actual state of the reactor does not correspond to a listed safe state, the computer selects operating instructions to return the reactor to a safe state.

  12. Potentials of fissioning plasmas

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thom, K.

    1979-01-01

    Successful experiments with the nuclear pumping of lasers have demonstrated that in a gaseous medium the kinetic energy of fission fragments can be converted directly into nonequilibrium optical radiation. This confirms the concept that the fissioning medium in a gas-phase nuclear reactor shows an internal structure such as a plasma in near thermal equilibrium varying up to a state of extreme nonequilibrium. During 20 years of research under NASA support major elements of the fissioning plasma reactor were demonstrated in theory and experiment, culminating in a proof-of-principle reactor test conducted at the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory. It is concluded that the construction of a gaseous fuel reactor power plant is within the reach of present technology.

  13. TREATMENT OF FISSION PRODUCT WASTE

    DOEpatents

    Huff, J.B.

    1959-07-28

    A pyrogenic method of separating nuclear reactor waste solutions containing aluminum and fission products as buring petroleum coke in an underground retort, collecting the easily volatile gases resulting as the first fraction, he uminum chloride as the second fraction, permitting the coke bed to cool and ll contain all the longest lived radioactive fission products in greatly reduced volume.

  14. Passive cooling system for top entry liquid metal cooled nuclear reactors

    DOEpatents

    Boardman, Charles E.; Hunsbedt, Anstein; Hui, Marvin M.

    1992-01-01

    A liquid metal cooled nuclear fission reactor plant having a top entry loop joined satellite assembly with a passive auxiliary safety cooling system for removing residual heat resulting from fuel decay during shutdown, or heat produced during a mishap. This satellite type reactor plant is enhanced by a backup or secondary passive safety cooling system which augments the primary passive auxiliary cooling system when in operation, and replaces the primary cooling system when rendered inoperative.

  15. Correlation of /sup 239/Pu thermal and fast reactor fission yields with neutron energy

    SciTech Connect

    Maeck, W.J.

    1981-10-01

    The relative isotopic abundances and the fisson yields for over 40 stable and long-lived fission products from /sup 239/Pu fast fission were evaluated to determine if the data could be correlated with neutron energy. Only mass spectrometric data were used in this study. For some nuclides changes of only a few percent in the relative isotopic abundance or the fission yields over the energy range of thermal to 1 MeV are easily discernable and significant; for others the data are too sparse and scattered to obtain a good correlation. The neutron energy index usedin this study is the /sup 150/Nd//sup 143/Nd isotopic ratio. The results of this correlation study compared to the US Evaluated Nuclear Data File (ENDF) fast fission yield compilation. Several discrepancies are noted and suggestions for future work are presented.

  16. Progress of Integral Experiments in Benchmark Fission Assemblies for a Blanket of Hybrid Reactor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, R.; Zhu, T. H.; Yan, X. S.; Lu, X. X.; Jiang, L.; Wang, M.; Han, Z. J.; Wen, Z. W.; Lin, J. F.; Yang, Y. W.

    2014-04-01

    This article describes recent progress in integral neutronics experiments in benchmark fission assemblies for the blanket design in a hybrid reactor. The spherical assemblies consist of three layers of depleted uranium shells and several layers of polyethylene shells, separately. In the assemblies with centralizing the D-T neutron source, the plutonium production rates, uranium fission rates and leakage neutron spectra are measured. The measured results are compared to the calculated ones with the MCNP-4B code and ENDF/B-VI library data, available.

  17. The harmony between nuclear reactions and nuclear reactor structures and systems

    SciTech Connect

    Popa-Simil, L.

    2012-07-01

    Advanced nuclear energy is one extremely viable approach for achieving the required goals. With its extraordinarily high energy density (both, per unit mass and per unit volume), it produces over seven orders of magnitude less waste than fossil fuels per unit of energy generated. Applying nano-technologies to nuclear reactors could potentially produce the extraordinary performance required. The actual nuclear reactors lack of performances, the complexity and hazard of the fuel cycle are in part due to the lack of understanding of the nature's laws related to energy distribution applied to fission products, and in part to the current technologic capabilities that make the economical optimum. In order to produce the desired increase of performances a novel multi-scale multi-physics and engineering approach have been developed, starting from the nuclear reactions involved, analyzing in detail the key features and requirements of the 'key players' in the process (neutrons, compound nucleus, fission products, transmutation products, decay radiation), the consequences of their interaction with matter. That complex interaction generates new reactions and new key-players (knock-on electrons, photons, phonons) that further interact with the matter represented by the nuclear fuel, cladding, cooling agents, structural materials and control systems. The understanding of this complexity of problems from fm-ps scale up to macro-system and mitigating all the requirements drives to that desired harmony that provides a safe energy delivery. (authors)

  18. Mechanisms of lead release from uraninite in the natural fission reactors in Gabon

    SciTech Connect

    Janeczek, J.; Ewing, R.C.

    1995-05-01

    Twenty-four samples of uranium ore from the natural fission reactors in Gabon were studied by detailed electron microprobe analysis and backscattered electron imaging in order to determine the behavior of radiogenic Pb and fissiongenic nuclides. Lead content in uraninite varies from 19 wt% PbO in relicts of pristine uraninite, which were found only in reactor zone 10, to less than 5 wt% in altered uraninites. Different mechanisms of Pb loss from uraninite prevailed in different reactor zones and included leaching, grain boundary diffusion, exsolution via continuous precipitation, and volume diffusion. As a result of these processes, Pb content in uraninites from all the reactor zones, except for reactor zone 10, are similar and vary around a mean value of 5.2 wt% PbO. All of these processes were thermally activated and episodic. The predominance of any single mechanism in a particular reactor zone was controlled by the accessibility of solutions to the uranium ore. The thermal event which caused Pb mobilization in the deposits resulted from regional igneous activity in the Franceville Basin more than 1100 Ma after the reactors sustained spontaneous fission reactions. Reducing conditions prevented the long distance migration of Pb, as well as of fissiongenic Mo and Ru.

  19. Daddy, What's a Nuclear Reactor?

    SciTech Connect

    Reisenweaver, Dennis W.

    2008-01-15

    No matter what we think of the nuclear industry, it is part of mankind's heritage. The decommissioning process is slowly making facilities associated with this industry disappear and not enough is being done to preserve the information for future generations. This paper provides some food for thought and provides a possible way forward. Industrial archaeology is an ever expanding branch of archaeology that is dedicated to preserving, interpreting and documenting our industrial past and heritage. Normally it begins with analyzing an old building or ruins and trying to determine what was done, how it was done and what changes might have occurred during its operation. We have a unique opportunity to document all of these issues and provide them before the nuclear facility disappears. Entombment is an acceptable decommissioning strategy; however we would have to change our concept of entombment. It is proposed that a number of nuclear facilities be entombed or preserved for future generations to appreciate. This would include a number of different types of facilities such as different types of nuclear power and research reactors, a reprocessing plant, part of an enrichment plant and a fuel manufacturing plant. One of the main issues that would require resolution would be that of maintaining information of the location of the buried facility and the information about its operation and structure, and passing this information on to future generations. This can be done, but a system would have to be established prior to burial of the facility so that no information would be lost. In general, our current set of requirements and laws may need to be re-examined and modified to take into account these new situations. As an alternative, and to compliment the above proposal, it is recommended that a study and documentation of the nuclear industry be considered as part of twentieth century industrial archaeology. This study should not only include the power and fuel cycle

  20. Record of Cycling Operation of the Natural Nuclear Reactor in the Oklo/Okelobondo Area in Gabon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meshik, A. P.; Hohenberg, C. M.; Pravdivtseva, O. V.

    2004-10-01

    Using selective laser extraction technique combined with sensitive ion-counting mass spectrometry, we have analyzed the isotopic structure of fission noble gases in U-free La-Ce-Sr-Ca aluminous hydroxy phosphate associated with the 2 billion yr old Oklo natural nuclear reactor. In addition to elevated abundances of fission-produced Zr, Ce, and Sr, we discovered high (up to 0.03 cm3 STP/g) concentrations of fission Xe and Kr, the largest ever observed in any natural material. The specific isotopic structure of xenon in this mineral defines a cycling operation for the reactor with 30-min active pulses separated by 2.5h dormant periods. Thus, nature not only created conditions for self-sustained nuclear chain reactions, but also provided clues on how to retain nuclear wastes, including fission Xe and Kr, and prevent uncontrolled runaway chain reaction.

  1. Record of cycling operation of the natural nuclear reactor in the Oklo/Okelobondo area in Gabon.

    PubMed

    Meshik, A P; Hohenberg, C M; Pravdivtseva, O V

    2004-10-29

    Using selective laser extraction technique combined with sensitive ion-counting mass spectrometry, we have analyzed the isotopic structure of fission noble gases in U-free La-Ce-Sr-Ca aluminous hydroxy phosphate associated with the 2 billion yr old Oklo natural nuclear reactor. In addition to elevated abundances of fission-produced Zr, Ce, and Sr, we discovered high (up to 0.03 cm(3) STP/g) concentrations of fission Xe and Kr, the largest ever observed in any natural material. The specific isotopic structure of xenon in this mineral defines a cycling operation for the reactor with 30-min active pulses separated by 2.5 h dormant periods. Thus, nature not only created conditions for self-sustained nuclear chain reactions, but also provided clues on how to retain nuclear wastes, including fission Xe and Kr, and prevent uncontrolled runaway chain reaction. PMID:15525157

  2. Improved Modeling of Prompt Fission Neutron Spectra for Nuclear Data Evaluations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neudecker, Denise; Talou, Patrick; Kawano, Toshihiko; Kahler, Albert C.; White, Morgan C.

    2015-10-01

    The prompt fission neutron spectra (PFNS) of major actinides such as 239Pu and 235U are quantities of interest for nuclear physics application areas including reactor physics and national security. Nuclear data evaluations provide recommended data for those application areas based on nuclear theory and experiments. Here, we present improvements made to the effective models predicting the PFNS up to incident neutron energies of 30 MeV and their impact on evaluations. These models describe relevant physics processes better than those used for the current US nuclear data library ENDF/B-VII.1. In addition, the use of higher-fidelity models such as Monte Carlo Hauser-Feshbach calculations will be discussed in the context of future PFNS evaluations. (LA-UR-15-24763) This work was carried out under the auspices of the US Department of Energy, National Nuclear Security Administration and Office of Science, and performed by Los Alamos National Security LLC under Contract DE-AC52-06NA25396.

  3. Gas tagging and cover gas combination for nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Gross, Kenny C.; Laug, Matthew T.

    1985-01-01

    The invention discloses the use of stable isotopes of neon and argon, that are grouped in preselected different ratios one to the other and are then sealed as tags in different cladded nuclear fuel elements to be used in a liquid metal fast breeder reactor. Failure of the cladding of any fuel element allows fission gases generated in the reaction and these tag isotopes to escape and to combine with the cover gas held in the reactor over the fuel elements. The isotopes specifically are Ne.sup.20, Ne.sup.21 and Ne.sup.22 of neon and Ar.sup.36, Ar.sup.38 and Ar.sup.40 of argon, and the cover gas is helium. Serially connected cryogenically operated charcoal beds are used to clean the cover gas and to separate out the tags. The first or cover gas cleanup bed is held between approximately 0.degree. and -25.degree. C. operable to remove the fission gases from the cover gas and tags and the second or tag recovery system bed is held between approximately -170.degree. and -185.degree. C. operable to isolate the tags from the cover gas. Spectrometric analysis further is used to identify the specific tags that are recovered, and thus the specific leaking fuel element. By cataloging the fuel element tags to the location of the fuel elements in the reactor, the location of the leaking fuel element can then be specifically determined.

  4. Fuel Performance Experiments and Modeling: Fission Gas Bubble Nucleation and Growth in Alloy Nuclear Fuels

    SciTech Connect

    McDeavitt, Sean; Shao, Lin; Tsvetkov, Pavel; Wirth, Brian; Kennedy, Rory

    2014-04-07

    Advanced fast reactor systems being developed under the DOE's Advanced Fuel Cycle Initiative are designed to destroy TRU isotopes generated in existing and future nuclear energy systems. Over the past 40 years, multiple experiments and demonstrations have been completed using U-Zr, U-Pu-Zr, U-Mo and other metal alloys. As a result, multiple empirical and semi-empirical relationships have been established to develop empirical performance modeling codes. Many mechanistic questions about fission as mobility, bubble coalescience, and gas release have been answered through industrial experience, research, and empirical understanding. The advent of modern computational materials science, however, opens new doors of development such that physics-based multi-scale models may be developed to enable a new generation of predictive fuel performance codes that are not limited by empiricism.

  5. A MODEL FOR PREDICTING FISSION PRODUCT ACTIVITIES IN REACTOR COOLANT: APPLICATION OF MODEL FOR ESTIMATING I-129 LEVELS IN RADIOACTIVE WASTE

    SciTech Connect

    Lewis, B.J.; Husain, A.

    2003-02-27

    A general model was developed to estimate the activities of fission products in reactor coolant and hence to predict a value for the I-129/Cs-137 scaling factor; the latter can be applied along with measured Cs-137 activities to estimate I-129 levels in reactor waste. The model accounts for fission product release from both defective fuel rods and uranium contamination present on in-core reactor surfaces. For simplicity, only the key release mechanisms were modeled. A mass balance, considering the two fuel source terms and a loss term due to coolant cleanup was solved to estimate fission product activity in the primary heat transport system coolant. Steady state assumptions were made to solve for the activity of shortlived fission products. Solutions for long-lived fission products are time-dependent. Data for short-lived radioiodines I-131, I-132, I-133, I-134 and I-135 were analyzed to estimate model parameters for I-129. The estimated parameter values were then used to determine I-1 29 coolant activities. Because of the chemical affinity between iodine and cesium, estimates of Cs-137 coolant concentrations were also based on parameter values similar to those for the radioiodines; this assumption was tested by comparing measured and predicted Cs-137 coolant concentrations. Application of the derived model to Douglas Point and Darlington Nuclear Generating Station plant data yielded estimates for I-129/I-131 and I-129/Cs-137 which are consistent with values reported for pressurized water reactors (PWRs) and boiling water reactors (BWRs). The estimated magnitude for the I-129/Cs-137 ratio was 10-8 - 10-7.

  6. Laser Intertial Fusion Energy: Neutronic Design Aspects of a Hybrid Fusion-Fission Nuclear Energy System

    SciTech Connect

    Kramer, Kevin James

    2010-04-08

    This study investigates the neutronics design aspects of a hybrid fusion-fission energy system called the Laser Fusion-Fission Hybrid (LFFH). A LFFH combines current Laser Inertial Confinement fusion technology with that of advanced fission reactor technology to produce a system that eliminates many of the negative aspects of pure fusion or pure fission systems. When examining the LFFH energy mission, a significant portion of the United States and world energy production could be supplied by LFFH plants. The LFFH engine described utilizes a central fusion chamber surrounded by multiple layers of multiplying and moderating media. These layers, or blankets, include coolant plenums, a beryllium (Be) multiplier layer, a fertile fission blanket and a graphite-pebble reflector. Each layer is separated by perforated oxide dispersion strengthened (ODS) ferritic steel walls. The central fusion chamber is surrounded by an ODS ferritic steel first wall. The first wall is coated with 250-500 μm of tungsten to mitigate x-ray damage. The first wall is cooled by Li17Pb83 eutectic, chosen for its neutron multiplication and good heat transfer properties. The Li17Pb83 flows in a jacket around the first wall to an extraction plenum. The main coolant injection plenum is immediately behind the Li17Pb83, separated from the Li17Pb83 by a solid ODS wall. This main system coolant is the molten salt flibe (2LiF-BeF2), chosen for beneficial neutronics and heat transfer properties. The use of flibe enables both fusion fuel production (tritium) and neutron moderation and multiplication for the fission blanket. A Be pebble (1 cm diameter) multiplier layer surrounds the coolant injection plenum and the coolant flows radially through perforated walls across the bed. Outside the Be layer, a fission fuel layer comprised of depleted uranium contained in Tristructural-isotropic (TRISO) fuel particles

  7. Realistic Development and Testing of Fission System at a Non-Nuclear Testing Facility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Godfroy, Tom; VanDyke, Melissa; Dickens, Ricky; Pedersen, Kevin; Lenard, Roger; Houts, Mike

    2000-01-01

    The use of resistance heaters to simulate heat from fission allows extensive development of fission systems to be performed in non-nuclear test facilities, saving time and money. Resistance heated tests on a module has been performed at the Marshall Space Flight Center in the Propellant Energy Source Testbed (PEST). This paper discusses the experimental facilities and equipment used for performing resistance heated tests. Recommendations are made for improving non-nuclear test facilities and equipment for simulated testing of nuclear systems.

  8. Realistic development and testing of fission systems at a non-nuclear testing facility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Godfroy, Tom; van Dyke, Melissa; Dickens, Ricky; Pedersen, Kevin; Lenard, Roger; Houts, Mike

    2000-01-01

    The use of resistance heaters to simulate heat from fission allows extensive development of fission systems to be performed in non-nuclear test facilities, saving time and money. Resistance heated tests on a module has been performed at the Marshall Space Flight Center in the Propellant Energy Source Testbed (PEST). This paper discusses the experimental facilities and equipment used for performing resistance heated tests. Recommendations are made for improving non-nuclear test facilities and equipment for simulated testing of nuclear systems. .

  9. Mini Fission-Fusion-Fission Explosions (Mini-Nukes). A Third Way Towards the Controlled Release of Nuclear Energy by Fission and Fusion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winterberg, F.

    2004-06-01

    Chemically ignited nuclear microexplosions with a fissile core, a DT reflector and U238 (Th232) pusher, offer a promising alternative to magnetic and inertial confinement fusion, not only burning DT, but in addition U238 (or Th232), and not depending on a large expensive laser of electric pulse power supply. The prize to be paid is a gram size amount of fissile material for each microexplosion, but which can be recovered by breeding in U238. In such a "mini-nuke" the chemical high explosive implodes a spherical metallic shell onto a smaller shell, with the smaller shell upon impact becoming the source of intense black body radiation which vaporizes the ablator of a spherical U238 (Th232) pusher, with the pusher accelerated to a velocity of ˜200 km/s, sufficient to ignite the DT gas placed in between the pusher and fissile core, resulting in a fast fusion neutron supported fission reaction in the core and pusher. Estimates indicate that a few kg of high explosives are sufficient to ignite such a "mini-nuke", with a gain of ˜103, releasing an energy equivalent to a few tons of TNT, still manageable for the microexplosion to be confined in a reactor vessel. A further reduction in the critical mass is possible by replacing the high explosive with fast moving solid projectiles. For light gas gun driven projectiles with a velocity of ˜ 10 km/s, the critical mass is estimated to be 0.25 g, and for magnetically accelerated 25 km/s projectiles it is as small as ˜ 0.05 g. With the much larger implosion velocities, reached by laser- or particle beam bombardment of the outer shell, the critical mass can still be much smaller with the fissile core serving as a fast ignitor. Increasing the implosion velocity decreases the overall radius of the fission-fusion assembly in inverse proportion to this velocity, for the 10 km/s light gas gun driven projectiles from 10 cm to 5 cm, for the 25 km/s magnetically projectiles down to 2 cm, and still more for higher implosion velocities.

  10. Gas-cooled nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Peinado, Charles O.; Koutz, Stanley L.

    1985-01-01

    A gas-cooled nuclear reactor includes a central core located in the lower portion of a prestressed concrete reactor vessel. Primary coolant gas flows upward through the core and into four overlying heat-exchangers wherein stream is generated. During normal operation, the return flow of coolant is between the core and the vessel sidewall to a pair of motor-driven circulators located at about the bottom of the concrete pressure vessel. The circulators repressurize the gas coolant and return it back to the core through passageways in the underlying core structure. If during emergency conditions the primary circulators are no longer functioning, the decay heat is effectively removed from the core by means of natural convection circulation. The hot gas rising through the core exits the top of the shroud of the heat-exchangers and flows radially outward to the sidewall of the concrete pressure vessel. A metal liner covers the entire inside concrete surfaces of the concrete pressure vessel, and cooling tubes are welded to the exterior or concrete side of the metal liner. The gas coolant is in direct contact with the interior surface of the metal liner and transfers its heat through the metal liner to the liquid coolant flowing through the cooling tubes. The cooler gas is more dense and creates a downward convection flow in the region between the core and the sidewall until it reaches the bottom of the concrete pressure vessel when it flows radially inward and up into the core for another pass. Water is forced to flow through the cooling tubes to absorb heat from the core at a sufficient rate to remove enough of the decay heat created in the core to prevent overheating of the core or the vessel.

  11. Shutdown system for a nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Groh, E.F.; Olson, A.P.; Wade, D.C.; Robinson, B.W.

    1984-06-05

    An ultimate shutdown system is provided for termination of neutronic activity in a nuclear reactor. The shutdown system includes bead chains comprising spherical containers suspended on a flexible cable. The containers are comprised of mating hemispherical shells which provide a ruggedized enclosure for reactor poison material. The bead chains, normally suspended above the reactor core on storage spools, are released for downward travel upon command from an external reactor monitor. The chains are capable of horizontal movement, so as to flow around obstructions in the reactor during their downward motion. 8 figs.

  12. Shutdown system for a nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Groh, Edward F.; Olson, Arne P.; Wade, David C.; Robinson, Bryan W.

    1984-01-01

    An ultimate shutdown system is provided for termination of neutronic activity in a nuclear reactor. The shutdown system includes bead chains comprising spherical containers suspended on a flexible cable. The containers are comprised of mating hemispherical shells which provide a ruggedized enclosure for reactor poison material. The bead chains, normally suspended above the reactor core on storage spools, are released for downward travel upon command from an external reactor monitor. The chains are capable of horizontal movement, so as to flow around obstructions in the reactor during their downward motion.

  13. Fast-acting nuclear reactor control device

    DOEpatents

    Kotlyar, Oleg M.; West, Phillip B.

    1993-01-01

    A fast-acting nuclear reactor control device for moving and positioning a fety control rod to desired positions within the core of the reactor between a run position in which the safety control rod is outside the reactor core, and a shutdown position in which the rod is fully inserted in the reactor core. The device employs a hydraulic pump/motor, an electric gear motor, and solenoid valve to drive the safety control rod into the reactor core through the entire stroke of the safety control rod. An overrunning clutch allows the safety control rod to freely travel toward a safe position in the event of a partial drive system failure.

  14. Detecting special nuclear materials in containers using high-energy gamma rays emitted by fission products

    DOEpatents

    Norman, Eric B.; Prussin, Stanley G.

    2007-10-02

    A method and a system for detecting the presence of special nuclear materials in a container. The system and its method include irradiating the container with an energetic beam, so as to induce a fission in the special nuclear materials, detecting the gamma rays that are emitted from the fission products formed by the fission, to produce a detector signal, comparing the detector signal with a threshold value to form a comparison, and detecting the presence of the special nuclear materials using the comparison.

  15. Optimum Reflector Configurations for Minimizing Fission Power Peaking in a Lithium-Cooled, Liquid-Metal Reactor with Sliding Reflectors

    SciTech Connect

    Fensin, Michael L.; Poston, David I.

    2005-02-06

    Many design constraints limit the development of a space fission power system optimized for fuel performance, system reliability, and mission cost. These design constraints include fuel mass provisions to meet cycle-length requirements, fuel centerline and clad temperatures, and clad creep from fission gas generation. Decreasing the fission power peaking of the reactor system enhances all of the mentioned parameters. This design study identifies the cause, determines the reflector configurations for reactor criticality, and generates worth curves for minimized fission-power-peaking configuration in a lithium-cooled liquid-metal reactor that uses sliding reflectors. Because of the characteristics of the core axial power distribution and axial power distortions inherent to the sliding reflector design, minimizing the power peaking of the reactor involves placing the reflectors in a position that least distorts the axial power distribution. The views expressed in this document are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect agreement by the Government.

  16. The 235U Prompt Fission Neutron Spectrum in the BR1 Reactor at SCK•CEN

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wagemans, Jan; Malambu, Edouard; Borms, Luc; Fiorito, Luca

    2016-02-01

    The BR1 research reactor at SCK•CEN has a spherical cavity in the graphite above the reactor core. In this cavity an accurately characterised Maxwellian thermal neutron field is present. Different converters can be loaded in the cavity in order to obtain other types of neutron (and gamma) irradiation fields. Inside the so-called MARK III converter a fast 235U(n,f) prompt fission neutron field can be obtained. With the support of MCNP calculations, irradiations in MARK III can be directly related to the pure 235U(n,f) prompt fission neutron spectrum. For this purpose MARK III spectrum averaged cross sections for the most relevant fluence dosimetry reactions have been determined. A calibration factor for absolute measurements has been determined applying activation dosimetry following ISO/IEC 17025 standards.

  17. NEUTRONIC REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Anderson, H.L.

    1960-09-20

    A nuclear reactor is described comprising fissionable material dispersed in graphite blocks, helium filling the voids of the blocks and the spaces therebetween, and means other than the helium in thermal conductive contact with the graphite for removing heat.

  18. Design and Test Plans for a Non-Nuclear Fission Power System Technology Demonstration Unit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mason, Lee; Palac, Donald; Gibson, Marc; Houts, Michael; Warren, John; Werner, James; Poston, David; Qualls, Arthur Lou; Radel, Ross; Harlow, Scott

    2012-01-01

    A joint National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and Department of Energy (DOE) team is developing concepts and technologies for affordable nuclear Fission Power Systems (FPSs) to support future exploration missions. A key deliverable is the Technology Demonstration Unit (TDU). The TDU will assemble the major elements of a notional FPS with a non-nuclear reactor simulator (Rx Sim) and demonstrate system-level performance in thermal vacuum. The Rx Sim includes an electrical resistance heat source and a liquid metal heat transport loop that simulates the reactor thermal interface and expected dynamic response. A power conversion unit (PCU) generates electric power utilizing the liquid metal heat source and rejects waste heat to a heat rejection system (HRS). The HRS includes a pumped water heat removal loop coupled to radiator panels suspended in the thermal-vacuum facility. The basic test plan is to subject the system to realistic operating conditions and gather data to evaluate performance sensitivity, control stability, and response characteristics. Upon completion of the testing, the technology is expected to satisfy the requirements for Technology Readiness Level 6 (System Demonstration in an Operational and Relevant Environment) based on the use of high-fidelity hardware and prototypic software tested under realistic conditions and correlated with analytical predictions.

  19. Design and Test Plans for a Non-Nuclear Fission Power System Technology Demonstration Unit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mason, L.; Palac, D.; Gibson, M.; Houts, M.; Warren, J.; Werner, J.; Poston, D.; Qualls, L.; Radel, R.; Harlow, S.

    A joint National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and Department of Energy (DOE) team is developing concepts and technologies for affordable nuclear Fission Power Systems (FPSs) to support future exploration missions. A key deliverable is the Technology Demonstration Unit (TDU). The TDU will assemble the major elements of a notional FPS with a non-nuclear reactor simulator (Rx Sim) and demonstrate system-level performance in thermal vacuum. The Rx Sim includes an electrical resistance heat source and a liquid metal heat transport loop that simulates the reactor thermal interface and expected dynamic response. A power conversion unit (PCU) generates electric power utilizing the liquid metal heat source and rejects waste heat to a heat rejection system (HRS). The HRS includes a pumped water heat removal loop coupled to radiator panels suspended in the thermal-vacuum facility. The basic test plan is to subject the system to realistic operating conditions and gather data to evaluate performance sensitivity, control stability, and response characteristics. Upon completion of the testing, the technology is expected to satisfy the requirements for Technology Readiness Level 6 (System Demonstration in an Operational and Relevant Environment) based on the use of high-fidelity hardware and prototypic software tested under realistic conditions and correlated with analytical predictions.

  20. Autonomous Control of Space Nuclear Reactors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Merk, John

    2013-01-01

    Nuclear reactors to support future robotic and manned missions impose new and innovative technological requirements for their control and protection instrumentation. Long-duration surface missions necessitate reliable autonomous operation, and manned missions impose added requirements for failsafe reactor protection. There is a need for an advanced instrumentation and control system for space-nuclear reactors that addresses both aspects of autonomous operation and safety. The Reactor Instrumentation and Control System (RICS) consists of two functionally independent systems: the Reactor Protection System (RPS) and the Supervision and Control System (SCS). Through these two systems, the RICS both supervises and controls a nuclear reactor during normal operational states, as well as monitors the operation of the reactor and, upon sensing a system anomaly, automatically takes the appropriate actions to prevent an unsafe or potentially unsafe condition from occurring. The RPS encompasses all electrical and mechanical devices and circuitry, from sensors to actuation device output terminals. The SCS contains a comprehensive data acquisition system to measure continuously different groups of variables consisting of primary measurement elements, transmitters, or conditioning modules. These reactor control variables can be categorized into two groups: those directly related to the behavior of the core (known as nuclear variables) and those related to secondary systems (known as process variables). Reliable closed-loop reactor control is achieved by processing the acquired variables and actuating the appropriate device drivers to maintain the reactor in a safe operating state. The SCS must prevent a deviation from the reactor nominal conditions by managing limitation functions in order to avoid RPS actions. The RICS has four identical redundancies that comply with physical separation, electrical isolation, and functional independence. This architecture complies with the

  1. Multiscale Simulation of Thermo-mechanical Processes in Irradiated Fission-reactor Materials

    SciTech Connect

    El-Azab, Anter

    2012-05-28

    This report contains a summary of progress made on the subtask area on phase field model development for microstructure evolution in irradiated materials, which was a part of the Computational Materials Science Network (CMSN) project entitled: Multiscale Simulation of Thermo-mechanical Processes in Irradiated Fission-reactor Materials. The model problem chosen has been that of void nucleation and growth under irradiation conditions in single component systems.

  2. On the conversion of infrared radiation from fission reactor-based photon engine into parallel beam

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gulevich, Andrey V.; Levchenko, Vladislav E.; Loginov, Nicolay I.; Kukharchuk, Oleg F.; Evtodiev, Denis A.; Zrodnikov, Anatoly V.

    2002-01-01

    The efficiency of infrared radiation conversion from photon engine based on fission reactor into parallel photon beam is discussed. Two different ways of doing that are considered. One of them is to use the parabolic mirror to convert of infrared radiation into parallel photon beam. The another one is based on the use of special lattice consisting of numerous light conductors. The experimental facility and some results are described. .

  3. Exploratory Design of a Reactor/Fuel Cycle Using Spent Nuclear Fuel Without Conventional Reprocessing - 13579

    SciTech Connect

    Bertch, Timothy C.; Schleicher, Robert W.; Rawls, John D.

    2013-07-01

    General Atomics has started design of a waste to energy nuclear reactor (EM2) that can use light water reactor (LWR) spent nuclear fuel (SNF). This effort addresses two problems: using an advanced small reactor with long core life to reduce nuclear energy overnight cost and providing a disposal path for LWR SNF. LWR SNF is re-fabricated into new EM2 fuel using a dry voloxidation process modeled on AIROX/ OREOX processes which remove some of the fission products but no heavy metals. By not removing all of the fission products the fuel remains self-protecting. By not separating heavy metals, the process remains proliferation resistant. Implementation of Energy Multiplier Module (EM2) fuel cycle will provide low cost nuclear energy while providing a long term LWR SNF disposition path which is important for LWR waste confidence. With LWR waste confidence recent impacts on reactor licensing, an alternate disposition path is highly relevant. Centered on a reactor operating at 250 MWe, the compact electricity generating system design maximizes site flexibility with truck transport of all system components and available dry cooling features that removes the need to be located near a body of water. A high temperature system using helium coolant, electricity is efficiently produced using an asynchronous high-speed gas turbine while the LWR SNF is converted to fission products. Reactor design features such as vented fuel and silicon carbide cladding support reactor operation for decades between refueling, with improved fuel utilization. Beyond the reactor, the fuel cycle is designed so that subsequent generations of EM2 reactor fuel will use the previous EM2 discharge, providing its own waste confidence plus eliminating the need for enrichment after the first generation. Additional LWR SNF is added at each re-fabrication to replace the removed fission products. The fuel cycle uses a dry voloxidation process for both the initial LWR SNF re-fabrication and later for EM2

  4. NUCLEAR DATABASES FOR REACTOR APPLICATIONS.

    SciTech Connect

    PRITYCHENKO, B.; ARCILLA, R.; BURROWS, T.; HERMAN, M.W.; MUGHABGHAB, S.; OBLOZINSKY, P.; ROCHMAN, D.; SONZOGNI, A.A.; TULI, J.; WINCHELL, D.F.

    2006-06-05

    The National Nuclear Data Center (NNDC): An overview of nuclear databases, related products, nuclear data Web services and publications. The NNDC collects, evaluates, and disseminates nuclear physics data for basic research and applied nuclear technologies. The NNDC maintains and contributes to the nuclear reaction (ENDF, CSISRS) and nuclear structure databases along with several others databases (CapGam, MIRD, IRDF-2002) and provides coordination for the Cross Section Evaluation Working Group (CSEWG) and the US Nuclear Data Program (USNDP). The Center produces several publications and codes such as Atlas of Neutron Resonances, Nuclear Wallet Cards booklets and develops codes, such as nuclear reaction model code Empire.

  5. Removal of hydrogen bubbles from nuclear reactors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jenkins, R. V.

    1980-01-01

    Method proposed for removing large hydrogen bubbles from nuclear environment uses, in its simplest form, hollow spheres of palladium or platinum. Methods would result in hydrogen bubble being reduced in size without letting more radioactivity outside reactor.

  6. Nuclear reactor shield including magnesium oxide

    DOEpatents

    Rouse, Carl A.; Simnad, Massoud T.

    1981-01-01

    An improvement in nuclear reactor shielding of a type used in reactor applications involving significant amounts of fast neutron flux, the reactor shielding including means providing structural support, neutron moderator material, neutron absorber material and other components as described below, wherein at least a portion of the neutron moderator material is magnesium in the form of magnesium oxide either alone or in combination with other moderator materials such as graphite and iron.

  7. Reactivity Transients in Nuclear Research Reactors

    Energy Science and Technology Software Center (ESTSC)

    2015-01-01

    Version 01 AIREMOD-RR is a point kinetics code which can simulate fast transients in nuclear research reactor cores. It can also be used for theoretical reactor dynamics studies. It is used for research reactor kinetic analysis and provides a point neutron kinetic capability. The thermal hydraulic behavior is governed by a one-dimensional heat balance equation. The calculations are restricted to a single equivalent unit cell which consists of fuel, clad and coolant.

  8. Fuel handling apparatus for a nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Hawke, Basil C.

    1987-01-01

    Fuel handling apparatus for transporting fuel elements into and out of a nuclear reactor and transporting them within the reactor vessel extends through a penetration in the side of the reactor vessel. A lateral transport device carries the fuel elements laterally within the vessel and through the opening in the side of the vessel, and a reversible lifting device raises and lowers the fuel elements. In the preferred embodiment, the lifting device is supported by a pair of pivot arms.

  9. Fission-product data analysis from actinide samples exposed in the Dounreay Prototype Fast Reactor

    SciTech Connect

    Murphy, B.D.; Dickens, J.K.; Walker, R.L.; Newton, T.D.

    1994-12-31

    Since 1979 a cooperative agreement has been in effect between the United States and the United Kingdom to investigate the irradiation of various actinide species placed in the core of the Dounreay Prototype Fast Reactor (PFR). The irradiated species were isotopes of thorium, protactinium, uranium, neptunium, plutonium, americium, and curium. A set of actinide samples (mg quantities) was exposed to about 490 effective full power days (EFPD) of reactor operations. The fission-product results are reported here. The actinide results will be report elsewhere.

  10. Composite Materials under Extreme Radiation and Temperature Environments of the Next Generation Nuclear Reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Simos, N.

    2011-05-01

    In the nuclear energy renaissance, driven by fission reactor concepts utilizing very high temperatures and fast neutron spectra, materials with enhanced performance that exceeds are expected to play a central role. With the operating temperatures of the Generation III reactors bringing the classical reactor materials close to their performance limits there is an urgent need to develop and qualify new alloys and composites. Efforts have been focused on the intricate relations and the high demands placed on materials at the anticipated extreme states within the next generation fusion and fission reactors which combine high radiation fluxes, elevated temperatures and aggressive environments. While nuclear reactors have been in operation for several decades, the structural materials associated with the next generation options need to endure much higher temperatures (1200 C), higher neutron doses (tens of displacements per atom, dpa), and extremely corrosive environments, which are beyond the experience on materials accumulated to-date. The most important consideration is the performance and reliability of structural materials for both in-core and out-of-core functions. While there exists a great body of nuclear materials research and operating experience/performance from fission reactors where epithermal and thermal neutrons interact with materials and alter their physio-mechanical properties, a process that is well understood by now, there are no operating or even experimental facilities that will facilitate the extreme conditions of flux and temperature anticipated and thus provide insights into the behaviour of these well understood materials. Materials, however, still need to be developed and their interaction and damage potential or lifetime to be quantified for the next generation nuclear energy. Based on material development advances, composites, and in particular ceramic composites, seem to inherently possess properties suitable for key functions within the

  11. MODERATOR ELEMENTS FOR UNIFORM POWER NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Balent, R.

    1963-03-12

    This patent describes a method of obtaining a flatter flux and more uniform power generation across the core of a nuclear reactor. The method comprises using moderator elements having differing moderating strength. The elements have an increasing amount of the better moderating material as a function of radial and/or axial distance from the reactor core center. (AEC)

  12. Nuclear reactor safety research since three mile island.

    PubMed

    Mynatt, F R

    1982-04-01

    The Three Mile Island nuclear power plant accident has resulted in redirection of reactor safety research priorities. The small release to the environment of radioactive iodine-13 to 17 curies in a total radioactivity release of 2.4 million to 13 million curies-has led to a new emphasis on the physical chemistry of fission product behavior in accidents; the fact that the nuclear core was severely damaged but did not melt down has opened a new accident regime-that of the degraded core; the role of the operators in the progression and severity of the accident has shifted emphasis from equipment reliability to human reliability. As research progresses in these areas, the technical base for regulation and risk analysis will change substantially. PMID:17736229

  13. Nuclear electric propulsion reactor control systems status

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ferg, D. A.

    1973-01-01

    The thermionic reactor control system design studies conducted over the past several years for a nuclear electric propulsion system are described and summarized. The relevant reactor control system studies are discussed in qualitative terms, pointing out the significant advantages and disadvantages including the impact that the various control systems would have on the nuclear electric propulsion system design. A recommendation for the reference control system is made, and a program for future work leading to an engineering model is described.

  14. Nuclear reactor vessel fuel thermal insulating barrier

    SciTech Connect

    Keegan, C. Patrick; Scobel, James H.; Wright, Richard F.

    2013-03-19

    The reactor vessel of a nuclear reactor installation which is suspended from the cold leg nozzles in a reactor cavity is provided with a lower thermal insulating barrier spaced from the reactor vessel that has a hemispherical lower section that increases in volume from the center line of the reactor to the outer extent of the diameter of the thermal insulating barrier and smoothly transitions up the side walls of the vessel. The space between the thermal insulating harrier and the reactor vessel forms a chamber which can be flooded with cooling water through passive valving to directly cool the reactor vessel in the event of a severe accident. The passive inlet valve for the cooling water includes a buoyant door that is normally maintained sealed under its own weight and floats open when the cavity is Hooded. Passively opening steam vents are also provided.

  15. Thermal Simulator Development: Non-Nuclear Testing of Space Fission Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bragg-Sitton, Shannon M.; Dickens, Ricky E.

    2006-01-01

    Non-nuclear testing can be a valuable tool in the development of a space nuclear power system. At the NASA MSFC Early Flight Fission Test Facility (EFF-TF), highly designed electric heaters are used to simulate the heat from nuclear fuel to test space fission power and propulsion systems. To allow early utilization, nuclear system designs must be relatively simple, easy to fabricate, and easy to test using non-nuclear heaters to closely mimic heat from fission. In this test strategy, highly designed electric heaters are used to simulate the heat from nuclear fuel, allowing one to develop a significant understanding of individual components and integrated system operation without the cost, time and safety concerns associated with nuclear testing.

  16. Mini-fission fusion explosive devices (mini-nukes) for nuclear pulse propulsion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winterberg, F.

    2005-11-01

    Nuclear pulse propulsion demands low-yield nuclear explosive devices. Because the critical mass of a fission explosive is rather large, this leads to extravagant fission devices with a very low fuel burn-up. For non-fission ignited pure fusion microexplosions the problem is the large ignition apparatus (laser, particle beam, etc.). Fission ignited large fusion explosive devices are for obvious reasons even less desirable. A third category (mini-nukes) are devices where the critical mass of the fission explosive is substantially reduced by its coupling to a DT fusion reaction, with the DT fusion neutrons increasing the fission rate. Whereas in pure fission devices a reduction of the critical mass is achieved by the implosive compression of the fissile core with a chemical high explosive, in the third category the implosion must at the same time heat the DT surrounding the fissile core to a temperature of ⩾107K, at which enough fusion neutrons are generated to increase the fission rate which in turn further increases the temperature and fusion neutron production rate. As has been shown by the author many years ago, such mini-nukes lead to astonishingly small critical masses. In their application to nuclear pulse propulsion the combustion products from the chemical high explosive are further heated by the neutrons and are becoming part of the propellant.

  17. Fission Product Decay Heat Calculations for Neutron Fission of 232Th

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Son, P. N.; Hai, N. X.

    2016-06-01

    Precise information on the decay heat from fission products following times after a fission reaction is necessary for safety designs and operations of nuclear-power reactors, fuel storage, transport flasks, and for spent fuel management and processing. In this study, the timing distributions of fission products' concentrations and their integrated decay heat as function of time following a fast neutron fission reaction of 232Th were exactly calculated by the numerical method with using the DHP code.

  18. A separate effect study of the influence of metallic fission products on CsI radioactive release from nuclear fuel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Di Lemma, F. G.; Colle, J. Y.; Beneš, O.; Konings, R. J. M.

    2015-10-01

    The chemistry of cesium and iodine is of main importance to quantify the radioactive release in case of a nuclear reactor accident, or sabotage involving irradiated nuclear materials. We studied the interaction of CsI with different metallic fission products such as Mo and Ru. These elements can be released from nuclear fuel when exposed to oxidising conditions, as in the case of contact of overheated nuclear fuel with air (e.g. in a spent fuel cask sabotage, uncovering of a spent fuel pond, or air ingress accidents). Experiments were performed by vaporizing mixtures of the compounds in air, and analysing the produced aerosols in view of a possible gas-gas and gas-aerosol reactions between the compounds. These results were compared with the gaseous species predicted by thermochemical equilibrium calculations and experimental equilibrium vaporization tests using Knudsen Effusion Mass Spectrometry.

  19. Nuclear reactor construction with bottom supported reactor vessel

    DOEpatents

    Sharbaugh, John E.

    1987-01-01

    An improved liquid metal nuclear reactor construction has a reactor core and a generally cylindrical reactor vessel for holding a large pool of low pressure liquid metal coolant and housing the core within the pool. The reactor vessel has an open top end, a closed flat bottom end wall and a continuous cylindrical closed side wall interconnecting the top end and bottom end wall. The reactor also has a generally cylindrical concrete containment structure surrounding the reactor vessel and being formed by a cylindrical side wall spaced outwardly from the reactor vessel side wall and a flat base mat spaced below the reactor vessel bottom end wall. A central support pedestal is anchored to the containment structure base mat and extends upwardly therefrom to the reactor vessel and upwardly therefrom to the reactor core so as to support the bottom end wall of the reactor vessel and the lower end of the reactor core in spaced apart relationship above the containment structure base mat. Also, an annular reinforced support structure is disposed in the reactor vessel on the bottom end wall thereof and extends about the lower end of the core so as to support the periphery thereof. In addition, an annular support ring having a plurality of inward radially extending linear members is disposed between the containment structure base mat and the bottom end of the reactor vessel wall and is connected to and supports the reactor vessel at its bottom end on the containment structure base mat so as to allow the reactor vessel to expand radially but substantially prevent any lateral motions that might be imposed by the occurrence of a seismic event. The reactor construction also includes a bed of insulating material in sand-like granular form, preferably being high density magnesium oxide particles, disposed between the containment structure base mat and the bottom end wall of the reactor vessel and uniformly supporting the reactor vessel at its bottom end wall on the containment

  20. Improved gas tagging and cover gas combination for nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Gross, K.C.; Laug, M.T.

    1983-09-26

    The invention discloses the use of stable isotopes of neon and argon, sealed as tags in different cladding nuclear fuel elements to be used in a liquid metal fast breeder reactor. Cladding failure allows fission gases and these tag isotopes to escape and to combine with the cover gas. The isotopes are Ne/sup 20/, Ne/sup 21/ and Ne/sup 22/ and Ar/sup 36/, Ar/sup 38/ and Ar/sup 40/, and the cover gas is He. Serially connected cryogenically operated charcoal beds are used to clean the cover gas and to separate out the tags. The first or cover gas cleanup bed is held between 0 and -25/sup 0/C to remove the fission gases from the cover gas and tags, and the second or tag recovery system bed between -170 and -185/sup 0/C to isolate the tags from the cover gas. Spectrometric analysis is used to identify the specific tags that are recovered, and thus the specific leaking fuel element. By cataloging the fuel element tags to the location of the fuel elements in the reactor, the location of the leaking fuel element can then be determined.

  1. FUEL-BREEDER FUEL ELEMENT FOR NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Abbott, W.E.; Balent, R.

    1958-09-16

    A fuel element design to facilitate breeding reactor fuel is described. The fuel element is comprised of a coatainer, a central core of fertile material in the container, a first bonding material surrounding the core, a sheet of fissionable material immediately surrounding the first bonding material, and a second bonding material surrounding the fissionable material and being in coniact with said container.

  2. Search for instantaneous radiation near the instant of break momentum of various fissioning nuclear systems at low excitation energies

    SciTech Connect

    Vorobyev, A. S. Val'ski, G. V.; Gagarskii, A. M.; Guseva, I. S.; Petrov, G. A.; Petrova, V. I.; Serebrin, A. Yu.; Sokolov, V. E.; Shcherbakov, O. A.

    2011-12-15

    The main results of studying the properties of 'instantaneous' neutrons and {gamma} photons during the fission of {sup 233,235}U(n{sub th}, f) and {sup 239}Pu(n{sub th}, f) nuclei and spontaneous fission of {sup 252}Cf, which were performed on the WWR-M reactor at the St. Petersburg Nuclear Physics Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, are presented. Along with obtaining the main characteristics of the instantaneous radiation from fission fragments, these studies were also aimed at gaining deeper insight into such exotic processes as the emission of break neutrons and {gamma} photons from a fissioning nucleus near the break point. These investigations were performed on different experimental setups using different analytical methods. This approach allowed us not only to find but also to reduce to minimum possible systematic effects. The yields of break neutrons were found to be about (5-7) Multiplication-Sign 10{sup -2} of the total number of neutrons per {sup 233,235}U(n, f) fission event and approximately twice as much for {sup 239}Pu(n, f) and {sup 252}Cf. The coefficient of T-odd asymmetry for {gamma} photons is in agreement with the estimate obtained on the assumption that the observed effect is mainly related to the {gamma} photons emitted by excited fragments with highly oriented angular momenta. This fact gave grounds to conclude that the desired break {gamma} photons cannot be reliably selected (within the obtained experimental accuracy) against the much larger background of {gamma} photons from fission fragments.

  3. Heat dissipating nuclear reactor with metal liner

    DOEpatents

    Gluekler, E.L.; Hunsbedt, A.; Lazarus, J.D.

    1985-11-21

    A nuclear reactor containment including a reactor vessel disposed within a cavity with capability for complete inherent decay heat removal in the earth and surrounded by a cast steel containment member which surrounds the vessel is described in this disclosure. The member has a thick basemat in contact with metal pilings. The basemat rests on a bed of porous particulate material, into which water is fed to produce steam which is vented to the atmosphere. There is a gap between the reactor vessel and the steel containment member. The containment member holds any sodium or core debris escaping from the reactor vessel if the core melts and breaches the vessel.

  4. Heat dissipating nuclear reactor with metal liner

    DOEpatents

    Gluekler, Emil L.; Hunsbedt, Anstein; Lazarus, Jonathan D.

    1987-01-01

    Disclosed is a nuclear reactor containment including a reactor vessel disposed within a cavity with capability for complete inherent decay heat removal in the earth and surrounded by a cast steel containment member which surrounds the vessel. The member has a thick basemat in contact with metal pilings. The basemat rests on a bed of porous particulate material, into which water is fed to produce steam which is vented to the atmosphere. There is a gap between the reactor vessel and the steel containment member. The containment member holds any sodium or core debris escaping from the reactor vessel if the core melts and breaches the vessel.

  5. Fission-product yield data from the US/UK joint experiment in the Dounreay Prototype Fast Reactor

    SciTech Connect

    Dickens, J.K.; Raman, S.

    1986-04-01

    The United States and the United Kingdom have been engaged in a joint research program in which samples of fissile and fertile actinides have been incorporated in fuel pins and irradiated in the Dounreay Prototype Fast Reactor in Scotland. The purpose of this portion of the program is to study both the materials behavior and the nuclear physics results - primarily measurements of the fission-product yields in the irradiated samples and secondarily information on the amounts of heavy elements in the samples. In the measurements high-resolution detectors were used to observe and (quantitatively measure) the gamma rays and x rays corresponding to the decay of several long-lived radioisotopes. Two series of measurements were made, one nine months following the end of the irradiation period and another approximately six months later.

  6. Reactivity control assembly for nuclear reactor. [LMFBR

    DOEpatents

    Bollinger, L.R.

    1982-03-17

    This invention, which resulted from a contact with the United States Department of Energy, relates to a control mechanism for a nuclear reactor and, more particularly, to an assembly for selectively shifting different numbers of reactivity modifying rods into and out of the core of a nuclear reactor. It has been proposed heretofore to control the reactivity of a breeder reactor by varying the depth of insertion of control rods (e.g., rods containing a fertile material such as ThO/sub 2/) in the core of the reactor, thereby varying the amount of neutron-thermalizing coolant and the amount of neutron-capturing material in the core. This invention relates to a mechanism which can advantageously be used in this type of reactor control system.

  7. 78 FR 71675 - Update of the Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation's Electronic Operating Reactor Correspondence

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-11-29

    ... COMMISSION Update of the Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation's Electronic Operating Reactor Correspondence... public of a slight change in the manner of distribution of publicly available operating reactor licensing... Division of Operating Reactor Licensing began transmitting correspondence to addressees and...

  8. The effects of water radiolysis on local redox conditions in the Oklo, Gabon, natural fission reactors 10 and 16

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Savary, Véronique; Pagel, Maurice

    1997-11-01

    In an underground nuclear waste repository, the chemical behavior of some stored fission products and actinides depends on the redox conditions during their long-term evolution. In this respect, radiolysis is an important phenomenon which can significantly modify the local redox conditions. The Oklo natural fission zones are good examples where the effect of radiolysis can be deduced from a mineralogical and geochemical study. Zones 10 and 16 were studied because they are located at depth of 270 m in an area devoid of any recent water circulation and not subject to the effect of the lateritic alteration occurring elsewhere in this area. In zone 10, there is a marked evolution of the UPbFeS mineralogy from the center to the periphery of the reactor zone. In the center, uraninite shows silicification and coffinitisation with the formation of galena and native lead; the PbO content of uraninite can be as much as 20 wt%. In the periphery of the reactor zone, some radiogenic lead is present as minium (Pb 30 4) and in Pb-bearing calcite. In the surrounding sandstones, hematite is widespread. In zone 16, the mineral paragenesis is generally comparable with that of zone 10 but with some differences. Galena is the only Pb-bearing mineral associated with uraninite crystals. The PbO content of uraninite is always <7 wt%. In the periphery of the alteration zone, barite partly replaces quartz. In the reactor zone, hematite is sometimes replaced by pyrite. In an area where the fission zone 10 is in contact with sandstones devoid of organic matter, H 2OH 2O 2 and H 20H 2 ± CH 4 inclusions were observed in healed microcracks in the detrital quartz grains. Based on microthermometric measurements, the salinity of the aqueous solution ranges from 0.2 to 18 wt% eq. NaCl. Raman analysis of the gas phase indicates that the hydrogen to oxygen ratio differs from an inclusion to the other. The presence of H 2- and O 2-bearing fluid inclusions confirms the existence of water

  9. A Comparison of Fast-Spectrum and Moderated Space Fission Reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Poston, David I.

    2005-02-06

    The reactor neutron spectrum is one of the fundamental design choices for any fission reactor, but the implications of using a moderated spectrum are vastly different for space reactors as opposed to terrestrial reactors. In addition, the pros and cons of neutron spectra are significantly different among many of the envisioned space power applications. This paper begins with a discussion of the neutronic differences between fast-spectrum and moderated space reactors. This is followed by a discussion of the pros and cons of fast-spectrum and moderated space reactors separated into three areas--technical risk, performance, and safety/safeguards. A mix of quantitative and qualitative arguments is presented, and some conclusions generally can be made regarding neutron spectrum and space power application. In most cases, a fast-spectrum system appears to be the better alternative (mostly because of simplicity and higher potential operating temperatures); however, in some cases, such as a low-power (<100-kWt) surface reactor, a moderated spectrum could provide a better approach. In all cases, the determination of which spectrum is preferred is a strong function of the metrics provided by the 'customer' - i.e., if a certain level of performance is required, it could provide a different solution than if a certain level of safeguards is required (which in some cases could produce a null solution). The views expressed in this document are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect agreement by the Government.

  10. Thermionic reactors for space nuclear power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Homeyer, W. G.; Merrill, M. H.; Holland, J. W.; Fisher, C. R.; Allen, D. T.

    1985-01-01

    Thermionic reactor designs for a variety of space power applications spanning the range from 5 kWe to 3 MWe are described. In all of these reactors, nuclear heat is converted directly to electrical energy in thermionic fuel elements (TFEs). A circulating reactor coolant carries heat from the core of TFEs directly to a heat rejection radiator system. The recent design of a thermionic reactor to meet the SP-100 requirements is emphasized. Design studies of reactors at other power levels show that the same TFE can be used over a broad range in power, and that design modifications can extend the range to many megawatts. The design of the SP-100 TFE is similar to that of TFEs operated successfully in test reactors, but with design improvements to extend the operating lifetime to seven years.

  11. Analysis of fission product revaporization in a BWR Reactor Coolant System during a station blackout accident

    SciTech Connect

    Yang, J.W.; Schmidt, E.; Cazzoli, E.; Khatib-Rahbar, M.

    1988-01-01

    This paper presents an analysis of fission product revaporization from the Reactor Coolant System (RCS) following the Reactor Pressure Vessel (RPV) failure. The station blackout accident in a BWR Mark I Power Plant was considered. The TRAPMELT3 models for vaporization, chemisorption, and the decay heating of RCS structures and gases were used and extended beyond the RPV failure in the analysis. The RCS flow models based on the density-difference or pressure-difference between the RCS and containment pedestal region were developed to estimate the RCS outflow which carries the revaporized fission product to the containment. A computer code called REVAP was developed for the analysis. The REVAP code was incorporated with the MARCH, TRAPMELT3 and NAUA codes from the Source Term Code Package (STCP) to estimate the impact of revaporization on environmental release. The results show that the thermal-hydraulic conditions between the RCS and the pedestal region are important factors in determining the magnitude of revaporization and subsequent release of the volatile fission product into the environment. 6 refs., 8 figs.

  12. ACRR (Annular Core Research Reactor) fission product release tests: ST-1 and ST-2

    SciTech Connect

    Allen, M.D.; Stockman, H.W.; Reil, K.O.; Grimley, A.J.; Camp, W.J.

    1988-01-01

    Two experiments (ST-1 and ST-2) have been performed in the Annular Core Research Reactor (ACER) at Sandia National Laboratories (SNLA) to obtain time-resolved data on the release of fission products from irradiated fuels under light water reactor (LWR) severe accident conditions. Both experiments were conducted in a highly reducing environment at maximum fuel temperatures of greater than 2400 K. These experiments were designed specifically to investigate the effect of increased total pressure on fission product release; ST-1 was performed at approximately 0.16 MPa and ST-2 was run at 1.9 MPa, whereas other parameters were matched as closely as possible. Release rate data were measured for Cs, I, Ba, Sr, Eu, Te, and U. The release rates were higher than predicted by existing codes for Ba, Sr, Eu, and U. Te release was very low, but Te did not appear to be sequestered by the zircaloy cladding; it was evenly distributed in the fuel. In addition, in posttest analysis a unique fuel morphology (fuel swelling) was observed which may have enhanced fission product release, especially in the high pressure test (ST-2). These data are compared with analytical results from the CORSOR correlation and the VICTORIA computer model. 8 refs., 8 figs., 2 tabs.

  13. Design Concept for a Nuclear Reactor-Powered Mars Rover

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elliott, John O.; Lipinski, Ronald J.; Poston, David I.

    2003-01-01

    A study was recently carried out by a team from JPL and the DOE to investigate the utility of a DOE-developed 3 kWe surface fission power system for Mars missions. The team was originally tasked to perform a study to evaluate the usefulness and feasibility of incorporation of such a power system into a landed mission. In the course of the study it became clear that the application of such a power system was enabling to a wide variety of potential missions. Of these, two missions were developed, one for a stationary lander and one for a reactor-powered rover. This paper discusses the design of the rover mission, which was developed around the concept of incorporating the fission power system directly into a large rover chassis to provide high power, long range traverse capability. The rover design is based on a minimum extrapolation of technology, and adapts existing concepts developed at JPL for the 2009 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover, lander and EDL systems. The small size of the reactor allowed its incorporation directly into an existing large MSL rover chassis design, allowing direct use of MSL aeroshell and pallet lander elements, beefed up to support the significantly greater mass involved in the nuclear power system and its associated shielding. This paper describes the unique design challenges encountered in the development of this mission architecture and incorporation of the fission power system in the rover, and presents a detailed description of the final design of this innovative concept for providing long range, long duration mobility on Mars.

  14. Transfer-induced fission in inverse kinematics: Impact on experimental and evaluated nuclear data bases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farget, F.; Caamaño, M.; Ramos, D.; Rodrıguez-Tajes, C.; Schmidt, K.-H.; Audouin, L.; Benlliure, J.; Casarejos, E.; Clément, E.; Cortina, D.; Delaune, O.; Derkx, X.; Dijon, A.; Doré, D.; Fernández-Domınguez, B.; Gaudefroy, L.; Golabek, C.; Heinz, A.; Jurado, B.; Lemasson, A.; Paradela, C.; Roger, T.; Salsac, M. D.; Schmitt, C.

    2015-12-01

    Inverse kinematics is a new tool to study nuclear fission. Its main advantage is the possibility to measure with an unmatched resolution the atomic number of fission fragments, leading to new observables in the properties of fission-fragment distributions. In addition to the resolution improvement, the study of fission based on nuclear collisions in inverse kinematics beneficiates from a larger view with respect to the neutron-induced fission, as in a single experiment the number of fissioning systems and the excitation energy range are widden. With the use of spectrometers, mass and kinetic-energy distributions may now be investigated as a function of the proton and neutron number sharing. The production of fissioning nuclei in transfer reactions allows studying the isotopic yields of fission fragments as a function of the excitation energy. The higher excitation energy resulting in the fusion reaction leading to the compound nucleus 250Cf at an excitation energy of 45MeV is also presented. With the use of inverse kinematics, the charge polarisation of fragments at scission is now revealed with high precision, and it is shown that it cannot be neglected, even at higher excitation energies. In addition, the kinematical properties of the fragments inform on the deformation configuration at scission.

  15. A Multiparameter Nuclear-fission Experiment: Can All be Obtained at Once?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matarranz, J.; Tsekhanovich, I.; Smith, A. G.; Dare, J. A.; Murray, L.; Pollitt, A. J.; Soldner, T.; Koster, U.; Biswas, D. C.

    A large variety of experimental works has been done since the discovery of nuclear fission, aimed at studying different aspects of the phenomenon. Yet our comprehension of the fission process is not complete. This is, among others, due to a certain lack in multi-parameter experimental data. An example here is the correlation between fractional independent yields of fission products and neutron and gamma-ray multiplicities. Fragment-gamma-neutron measurements, especially if correlated with fission- fragment kinetic energies, give the complete set of observables and are therefore of interest from the point of view of modeling and understanding of the fission process. A two-arm spectrometer of fission products (STEFF) has been recently built at the Manchester University. In addition to the identification of masses from complementary fission products, by the double energy/double velocity measurement, the spectrometer is capable of delivering information on their nuclear charges, on the event-by-event basis. The spectrometer also comprises an array of NaI and may house a further array of neutron detectors. In such configuration, STEFF has been used at the ILL neutron guide at the benchmark experiment 235U(nth, f). Details on the experiment will be presented, results on the identification of atomic numbers in the light group of fission products will be demonstrated and the perspectives discussed.

  16. Fission Product Monitoring of TRISO Coated Fuel For The Advanced Gas Reactor -1 Experiment

    SciTech Connect

    Dawn M. Scates; John K Hartwell; John B. Walter

    2008-09-01

    The US Department of Energy has embarked on a series of tests of TRISO-coated particle reactor fuel intended for use in the Very High Temperature Reactor (VHTR) as part of the Advanced Gas Reactor (AGR) program. The AGR-1 TRISO fuel experiment, currently underway, is the first in a series of eight fuel tests planned for irradiation in the Advanced Test Reactor (ATR) located at the Idaho National Laboratory (INL). The AGR-1 experiment reached a peak compact averaged burn up of 9% FIMA with no known TRISO fuel particle failures in March 2008. The burnup goal for the majority of the fuel compacts is to have a compact averaged burnup greater than 18% FIMA and a minimum compact averaged burnup of 14% FIMA. At the INL the TRISO fuel in the AGR-1 experiment is closely monitored while it is being irradiated in the ATR. The effluent monitoring system used for the AGR-1 fuel is the Fission Product Monitoring System (FPMS). The FPMS is a valuable tool that provides near real-time data indicative of the AGR-1 test fuel performance and incorporates both high-purity germanium (HPGe) gamma-ray spectrometers and sodium iodide [NaI(Tl)] scintillation detector-based gross radiation monitors. To quantify the fuel performance, release-to-birth ratios (R/B’s) of radioactive fission gases are computed. The gamma-ray spectra acquired by the AGR-1 FPMS are analyzed and used to determine the released activities of specific fission gases, while a dedicated detector provides near-real time count rate information. Isotopic build up and depletion calculations provide the associated isotopic birth rates. This paper highlights the features of the FPMS, encompassing the equipment, methods and measures that enable the calculation of the release-to-birth ratios. Some preliminary results from the AGR-1 experiment are also presented.

  17. Fission Product Monitoring of TRISO Coated Fuel For The Advanced Gas Reactor -1 Experiment

    SciTech Connect

    Dawn M. Scates; John K. Hartwell; John b. Walter

    2010-10-01

    The US Department of Energy has embarked on a series of tests of TRISO-coated particle reactor fuel intended for use in the Very High Temperature Reactor (VHTR) as part of the Advanced Gas Reactor (AGR) program. The AGR-1 TRISO fuel experiment, currently underway, is the first in a series of eight fuel tests planned for irradiation in the Advanced Test Reactor (ATR) located at the Idaho National Laboratory (INL). The AGR-1 experiment reached a peak compact averaged burn up of 9% FIMA with no known TRISO fuel particle failures in March 2008. The burnup goal for the majority of the fuel compacts is to have a compact averaged burnup greater than 18% FIMA and a minimum compact averaged burnup of 14% FIMA. At the INL the TRISO fuel in the AGR-1 experiment is closely monitored while it is being irradiated in the ATR. The effluent monitoring system used for the AGR-1 fuel is the Fission Product Monitoring System (FPMS). The FPMS is a valuable tool that provides near real-time data indicative of the AGR-1 test fuel performance and incorporates both high-purity germanium (HPGe) gamma-ray spectrometers and sodium iodide [NaI(Tl)] scintillation detector-based gross radiation monitors. To quantify the fuel performance, release-to-birth ratios (R/B’s) of radioactive fission gases are computed. The gamma-ray spectra acquired by the AGR-1 FPMS are analyzed and used to determine the released activities of specific fission gases, while a dedicated detector provides near-real time count rate information. Isotopic build up and depletion calculations provide the associated isotopic birth rates. This paper highlights the features of the FPMS, encompassing the equipment, methods and measures that enable the calculation of the release-to-birth ratios. Some preliminary results from the AGR-1 experiment are also presented.

  18. Nuclear fission of neutron-deficient protactinium nuclides

    SciTech Connect

    Nishinaka, I.; Nagame, Y.; Tsukada, K.; Ikezoe, H.; Sueki, K.; Nakahara, H.; Tanikawa, M.; Ohtsuki, T.

    1997-08-01

    Fragment velocity, kinetic energy, mass yield, and element yield distributions in the fission of neutron-deficient Pa isotopes produced in the reactions of {sup 16}O and {sup 18}O on {sup 209}Bi have been measured at incident beam energies near and above the Coulomb barriers by the time-of-flight and radiochemical methods. An asymmetric mass-division component has been observed. Measured fission cross sections were compared with the results of statistical model calculations which take into account two fission barrier heights for symmetric and asymmetric yields. The fission barrier height deduced for the asymmetric fission is found slightly lower than that for the symmetric one. The difference between the two barrier heights in the fission of the present protactinium nuclides (N{approximately}135) is considerably smaller than that in the neutron-rich nuclide of {sup 233}Pa (N{approximately}142), indicating that the difference sensitively depends on the neutron number of the fissioning nuclide. {copyright} {ital 1997} {ital The American Physical Society}

  19. STEAM GENERATOR FOR NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Kinyon, B.W.; Whitman, G.D.

    1963-07-16

    The steam generator described for use in reactor powergenerating systems employs a series of concentric tubes providing annular passage of steam and water and includes a unique arrangement for separating the steam from the water. (AEC)

  20. MOLTEN FLUORIDE NUCLEAR REACTOR FUEL

    DOEpatents

    Barton, C.J.; Grimes, W.R.

    1960-01-01

    Molten-salt reactor fuel compositions consisting of mixtures of fluoride salts are reported. In its broadest form, the composition contains an alkali fluoride such as sodium fluoride, zirconium tetrafluoride, and a uranium fluoride, the latter being the tetrafluoride or trifluoride or a mixture of the two. An outstanding property of these fuel compositions is a high coeffieient of thermal expansion which provides a negative temperature coefficient of reactivity in reactors in which they are used.

  1. Fuel efficient hydrodynamic containment for gas core fission reactor rocket propulsion. Final report, September 30, 1992--May 31, 1995

    SciTech Connect

    Sforza, P.M.; Cresci, R.J.

    1997-05-31

    Gas core reactors can form the basis for advanced nuclear thermal propulsion (NTP) systems capable of providing specific impulse levels of more than 2,000 sec., but containment of the hot uranium plasma is a major problem. The initial phase of an experimental study of hydrodynamic confinement of the fuel cloud in a gas core fission reactor by means of an innovative application of a base injection stabilized recirculation bubble is presented. The development of the experimental facility, a simulated thrust chamber approximately 0.4 m in diameter and 1 m long, is described. The flow rate of propellant simulant (air) can be varied up to about 2 kg/sec and that of fuel simulant (air, air-sulfur hexafluoride) up to about 0.2 kg/sec. This scale leads to chamber Reynolds numbers on the same order of magnitude as those anticipated in a full-scale nuclear rocket engine. The experimental program introduced here is focused on determining the size, geometry, and stability of the recirculation region as a function of the bleed ratio, i.e. the ratio of the injected mass flux to the free stream mass flux. A concurrent CFD study is being carried out to aid in demonstrating that the proposed technique is practical.

  2. Design related aspects in advanced nuclear fission plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoffelner, Wolfgang

    2011-02-01

    Important issues to be considered for design of future reactors are: extrapolation of stress rupture data, creep-fatigue, negligible creep, damage monitoring. The paper highlights some new developments taking examples from a martensitic steel (mod 9% Cr), oxide dispersion strengthened (ODS) steels and nickel-base superalloys. Traditional approaches to extrapolation of (thermal) stress rupture data like Larson-Miller Parameter or Monkman-Grant rule seem to be valid concepts also for advanced reactors. However, a significant influence of cyclic softening on creep rates and stress rupture data can be expected as shown for grade 91. This is particularly true for creep-fatigue interactions. Based on cyclic stress-strain behaviour it is also possible to get very good life-time predictions under creep-fatigue with a strain range separation (inelastic fatigue and creep ranges) technique which could replace the currently used linear life fraction rule. Results from in-beam irradiation creep reveal no significant influence of dispersoid size. It can be assumed that irradiation creep is a matrix property. Finally it is shown that micro-sample testing of exposed material could be used as an advanced method for damage assessment in future nuclear power plants.

  3. Impact of Fission Products Impurity on the Plutonium Content of Metal- and Oxide- Fuels in Sodium Cooled Fast Reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Hikaru Hiruta; Gilles Youinou

    2013-09-01

    This short report presents the neutronic analysis to evaluate the impact of fission product impurity on the Pu content of Sodium-cooled Fast Reactor (SFR) metal- and oxide- fuel fabrication. The similar work has been previously done for PWR MOX fuel [1]. The analysis will be performed based on the assumption that the separation of the fission products (FP) during the reprocessing of UOX spent nuclear fuel assemblies is not perfect and that, consequently, a certain amount of FP goes into the Pu stream used to fabricate SFR fuels. Only non-gaseous FPs have been considered (see the list of 176 isotopes considered in the calculations in Appendix 1 of Reference 1). Throughout of this report, we define the mixture of Pu and FPs as PuFP. The main objective of this analysis is to quantify the increase of the Pu content of SFR fuels necessary to maintain the same average burnup at discharge independently of the amount of FP in the Pu stream, i.e. independently of the PuFP composition. The FP losses are considered element-independent, i.e., for example, 1% of FP losses mean that 1% of all non-gaseous FP leak into the Pu stream.

  4. Fission Product Monitoring and Release Data for the Advanced Gas Reactor -1 Experiment

    SciTech Connect

    Dawn M. Scates; John B. Walter; Jason M. Harp; Mark W. Drigert; Edward L. Reber

    2010-10-01

    The AGR-1 experiment is a fueled multiple-capsule irradiation experiment that was irradiated in the Advanced Test Reactor (ATR) from December 26, 2006 until November 6, 2009 in support of the Very High Temperature Reactor (VHTR) Technology Development Office (TDO) Fuel Development and Qualification program. An important measure of the fuel performance is the quantification of the fission product releases over the duration of the experiment. To provide this data for the inert fission gasses(Kr and Xe), a fission product monitoring system (FPMS) was developed and implemented to monitor the individual capsule effluents for the radioactive species. The FPMS continuously measured the concentrations of various krypton and xenon isotopes in the sweep gas from each AGR-1 capsule to provide an indicator of fuel irradiation performance. Spectrometer systems quantified the concentrations of Kr-85m, Kr-87, Kr-88, Kr-89, Kr-90, Xe-131m, Xe-133, Xe 135, Xe 135m, Xe-137, Xe-138, and Xe-139 accumulated over repeated eight hour counting intervals.-. To determine initial fuel quality and fuel performance, release activity for each isotope of interest was derived from FPMS measurements and paired with a calculation of the corresponding isotopic production or birthrate. The release activities and birthrates were combined to determine Release-to-Birth ratios for the selected nuclides. R/B values provide indicators of initial fuel quality and fuel performance during irradiation. This paper presents a brief summary of the FPMS, the release to birth ratio data for the AGR-1 experiment and preliminary comparisons of AGR-1 experimental fuels data to fission gas release models.

  5. Planetary Surface Power and Interstellar Propulsion Using Fission Fragment Magnetic Collimator Reactor

    SciTech Connect

    Tsvetkov, Pavel V.; Hart, Ron R.; King, Don B.; Rochau, Gary E.

    2006-01-20

    Fission energy can be used directly if the kinetic energy of fission fragments is converted to electricity and/or thrust before turning into heat. The completed US DOE NERI Direct Energy Conversion (DEC) Power Production project indicates that viable DEC systems are possible. The US DOE NERI DEC Proof of Principle project began in October of 2002 with the goal to demonstrate performance principles of DEC systems. One of the emerging DEC concepts is represented by fission fragment magnetic collimator reactors (FFMCR). Safety, simplicity, and high conversion efficiency are the unique advantages offered by these systems. In the FFMCR, the basic energy source is the kinetic energy of fission fragments. Following escape from thin fuel layers, they are captured on magnetic field lines and are directed out of the core and through magnetic collimators to produce electricity and thrust. The exiting flow of energetic fission fragments has a very high specific impulse that allows efficient planetary surface power and interstellar propulsion without carrying any conventional propellant onboard. The objective of this work was to determine technological feasibility of the concept. This objective was accomplished by producing the FFMCR design and by analysis of its performance characteristics. The paper presents the FFMCR concept, describes its development to a technologically feasible level and discusses obtained results. Performed studies offer efficiencies up to 90% and velocities approaching speed of light as potentially achievable. The unmanned 10-tons probe with 1000 MW FFMCR propulsion unit would attain mission velocity of about 2% of the speed of light. If the unit is designed for 4000 MW, then in 10 years the unmanned 10-tons probe would attain mission velocity of about 10% of the speed of light.

  6. Cross sections and barriers for nuclear fission induced by high-energy nucleons

    SciTech Connect

    Grudzevich, O. T.; Yavshits, S. G.

    2013-03-15

    The cross sections for the fission of {sup 232}Th, {sup 235,238}U, {sup 237}Np, and {sup 239}Pu target nuclei that was induced by 20- to 1000-MeV neutrons and protons were calculated. The respective calculations were based on the multiconfiguration-fission (MCFx) model, which was used to describe three basic stages of the interaction of high-energy nucleons with nuclei: direct processes (intranuclear cascade), equilibration of the emerging compound system, and the decay of the compound nucleus (statistical model). Fission barriers were calculated within the microscopic approach for isotopic chains formed by 15 to 20 nuclei of the required elements. The calculated fission cross sections were compared with available experimental data. It was shown that the input data set and the theoretical model used made it possible to predict satisfactorily cross section for nuclear fission induced by 20- to 1000-MeV nucleons.

  7. Space nuclear reactor shielding optimization studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jimenez, Richard D.; El-Genk, Mohamed S.

    The Institute for Space Nuclear Reactor Studies is investigating optimal techniques for shielding spacecraft (payload) electronics from the combined radiation effects of the SP-100 system nuclear reactor core and the natural space environment. The academic challenge of this research includes the investigation of the combined influences of radiation from the space environment and the radiations from the reactor power source. The technical application includes a series of shielding mass penalty tradeoffs for the SP-100 Program concept between the reactor core shield and the additional shielding of the spacecraft enclosure. These mass penalty tradeoffs are being conducted for several space flight orbits of future interest to the space military and civilian communities. It was shown that several potential mission orbits may pose environmental radiation dosages which are more severe than the SP-100 specification of core escape neutron and gamma ray particle fluences incident on the spacecraft.

  8. Non-equilibrium fission processes in intermediate energy nuclear collisions

    SciTech Connect

    Loveland, W.; Casey, C.; Xu, Z.; Seaborg, G.T.; Aleklett, K.; Sihver, L.

    1989-04-01

    We have measured the target fragment yields, angular and energy distributions for the interaction of 12-16 MeV/A/sup 32/S with /sup 165/Ho and /sup 197/Au and for the interaction of 32 and 44 MeV/A /sup 40/Ar with /sup 197/Au. The Au fission fragments associated with the peripheral collision peak in the folding angle distribution originate in a normal, ''slow'' fission process in which statistical equilibrium has been established. At the two lowest projectile energies, the Au fission fragments associated with the central collision peak in the folding angle distribution originate in part from ''fast'' (/tau//approximately//sup /minus/23/s), non-equilibrium processes. Most of the Ho fission fragments originate in non- equilibrium processes. The fast, non-equilibrium process giving rise to these fragments has many of the characteristics of ''fast fission'', but the cross sections associated with these fragments are larger than one would expect from current theories of ''fast fission. '' 14 refs., 8 figs.

  9. Description of induced nuclear fission with Skyrme energy functionals. II. Finite temperature effects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schunck, N.; Duke, D.; Carr, H.

    2015-03-01

    Understanding the mechanisms of induced nuclear fission for a broad range of neutron energies could help resolve fundamental science issues, such as the formation of elements in the universe, but could have also a large impact on societal applications in energy production or nuclear waste management. The goal of this paper is to set up the foundations of a microscopic theory to study the static aspects of induced fission as a function of the excitation energy of the incident neutron, from thermal to fast neutrons. To account for the high excitation energy of the compound nucleus, we employ a statistical approach based on finite temperature nuclear density functional theory with Skyrme energy densities, which we benchmark on the 239Pu(n ,f ) reaction. We compute the evolution of the least-energy fission pathway across multidimensional potential energy surfaces with up to five collective variables as a function of the nuclear temperature and predict the evolution of both the inner and the outer fission barriers as a function of the excitation energy of the compound nucleus. We show that the coupling to the continuum induced by the finite temperature is negligible in the range of neutron energies relevant for many applications of neutron-induced fission. We prove that the concept of quantum localization introduced recently can be extended to T >0 , and we apply the method to study the interaction energy and total kinetic energy of fission fragments as a function of the temperature for the most probable fission. While large uncertainties in theoretical modeling remain, we conclude that a finite temperature nuclear density functional may provide a useful framework to obtain accurate predictions of fission fragment properties.

  10. Thermal release of volatile fission products from irradiated nuclear fuel

    SciTech Connect

    Bray, L.A.; Burger, L.L.; Morgan, L.G.; Baldwin, D.L.

    1983-06-01

    An effective procedure for removing /sup 3/H, Xe and Kr from irradiated fuels was demonstrated using Shippingport UO/sub 2/ fuel. The release characteristics of /sup 3/H, Kr, Xe, and I from irradiated nuclear fuel have been determined as a function of temperature and gaseous environment. Vacuum outgassing and a flowing gas stream have been used to vary the gaseous environment. Vacuum outgassing released about 99% of the /sup 3/H and 20% of both Kr and Xe within a 3 h at 1500/sup 0/C. Similar results were obtained using a carrier gas of He containing 6% H/sub 2/. However, a carrier gas containing only He resulted in the release of approximately 80% of the /sup 3/H and 99% of both Kr and Xe. These results indicate that the release of these volatile fission products from irradiated nuclear fuel is a function of the chemical composition of the gaseous environment. The rate of tritium release increased with increasing temperature (1100 to 1500/sup 0/C) and with the addition of hydrogen to the gas stream. Using crushed UO/sub 2/ fuel without cladding and He as the carrier gas, Kr was completely released at 1500/sup 0/C in 2.5 h. Below 1350/sup 0/C, no Kr-Xe release was observed. Approximately 86% of the /sup 129/I and 95% of the cesium was released from a piece (3.9 g) of UO/sub 2/ fuel at 1500/sup 0/C in He. The zirconium cladding was observed to fracture during heat treatment. A large-scale thermal outgassing system was conceptually designed by the General Atomic Company from an engineering analysis of available experimental data. The direct cost of a 0.5 metric/ton day thermal outgassing system is estimated to be $1,926,000 (1982 dollars), including equipment, installation, instrumentation and controls, piping, and services. The thermal outgassing process was determined to be a technically feasible and cost-competitive process to remove tritium in the head-end portion of a LWR fuel reprocessing plant. Additional laboratory-scale development has been recommended.

  11. The effects of water radiolysis on local redox conditions in the Oklo, Gabon, natural fission reactors 10 and 16

    SciTech Connect

    Savary, V.; Pagel, M.

    1997-11-01

    In an underground nuclear waste repository, the chemical behavior of some stored fission products and actinides depends on the redox conditions during their long-term evolution. In this respect, radiolysis is an important phenomenon which can significantly modify the local redox conditions. The Oklo natural fission zones are good examples where the effect of radiolysis can be deduced from a mineralogical and geochemical study. Zones 10 and 16 were studied because they are located at depth of 270 m in an area devoid of any recent water circulation and not subject to the effect of the lateritic alteration occurring elsewhere in this area. In zone 10, there is a marked evolution of the U-Pb-Fe-S mineralogy from the center to the periphery of the reactor zone. In the center, uraninite shows silicification and coffinitisation with the formation of galena and native lead; the PbO content of uraninite can be as much as 20 wt%. In the periphery of the reactor zone, some radiogenic lead is present as minimum (Pb{sub 3}O{sub 4}) and in Pb-bearing calcite. In the surrounding sandstones, hematite is widespread. In zone 16, the mineral paragenesis is generally comparable with that of zone 10 but with some differences. Galena is the only Pb-bearing mineral associated with uraninite crystals. The PbO content of uraninite is always <7 wt%. In the periphery of the alteration zone, barite partly replaces quartz. In the reactor zone, hematite is sometimes replaced by pyrite. In an area where the fission zone 10 is in contact with sandstones devoid of organic matter, H{sub 2}O-H{sub 2} {+-} CH{sub 4} inclusions were observed in healed microcracks in the detrital quartz grains. Based on microthermometric measurements, the salinity of the aqueous solution ranges from 0.2 to 18 wt% eq. NaCl. Raman analysis of the gas phase indicates that the hydrogen to oxygen ratio differs from an inclusion to the other. 41 refs., 15 figs., 3 tabs.

  12. Heat-generating nuclear reactor

    SciTech Connect

    Dupuy, G.; Fajeau, M.; Labrousse, M.; Lerouge, B.; Minguet, J.

    1981-01-20

    A reactor vessel filled with coolant fluid is divided by a wall into an upper region and a lower region which contains the reactor core, part of the coolant fluid in the upper region being injected into the lower region. The injection flow rate is regulated as a function of the variations in pressure in the lower region by means of a baffle-plate container which communicates with a leak-tight chamber and with a storage reservoir, a flow of fluid from the chamber to the reservoir being established only at the time of a reduction in the rate of injection into the container. The reactor can be employed for the production of hot water which is passed through a heat exchanger and supplied to a heating installation.

  13. 10 CFR 1.43 - Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 10 Energy 1 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation. 1.43 Section 1.43 Energy NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION STATEMENT OF ORGANIZATION AND GENERAL INFORMATION Headquarters Program Offices § 1.43 Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation. The Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation— (a) Develops, promulgates and...

  14. Cooling system for a nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Amtmann, Hans H.

    1982-01-01

    A cooling system for a gas-cooled nuclear reactor is disclosed which includes at least one primary cooling loop adapted to pass coolant gas from the reactor core and an associated steam generator through a duct system having a main circulator therein, and at least one auxiliary cooling loop having communication with the reactor core and adapted to selectively pass coolant gas through an auxiliary heat exchanger and circulator. The main and auxiliary circulators are installed in a common vertical cavity in the reactor vessel, and a common return duct communicates with the reactor core and intersects the common cavity at a junction at which is located a flow diverter valve operative to effect coolant flow through either the primary or auxiliary cooling loops.

  15. Illite in the Oklo natural fission reactors in Gabon: Considerations for Cs containment

    SciTech Connect

    Szabo, G.; Guczi, J.; Nagy, B.; Janeczek, J.; Ewing, R.C.

    1995-12-31

    The {approximately} 2 Ga old Oklo, Okelobondo and Bangombe natural reactors in the Republic of Gabon contain solid graphitic bitumens and clay minerals, both of which have effected the containment, or partial containment, of {sup 235}U and several fission products. In laboratory experiments, sorption of {sup 134}Cs by illite, and illite coated with petroleum was measured in aqueous NaCl solutions to simulate subsurface (connate) waters in sedimentary rocks. Elevated temperatures and increasing salinity of the NaCl solutions facilitated the removal of sorbed cesium from illite.

  16. Oklo-natural fission reactor program. Progress report, October 1, 1979-December 31, 1979

    SciTech Connect

    Norris, A.E.

    1980-03-01

    The study of lead, ruthenium, and technetium transport in nature requires the mass spectrometric analyses of large numbers of geologic samples. This quarter about 200 samples arrived from Gabon, which were collected at the Oklo mine in September. Work was performed to improve the lead and ruthenium chemical procedures and the mass spectrometric instrumentation in preparation for analyzing many of the Oklo samples and a large number of the 402 samples on hand from Key Lake, Canada. Data concerning ruthenium isotopic alterations from samples near an Oklo natural fission reactor zone indicated that ruthenium or technetium were not transported to distances greater than the 10 meters detected previously.

  17. Distribution functions in plasmas generated by a volume source of fission fragments. [in nuclear pumped lasers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Deese, J. E.; Hassan, H. A.

    1979-01-01

    The role played by fission fragments and electron distribution functions in nuclear pumped lasers is considered and procedures for their calculations are outlined. The calculations are illustrated for a He-3/Xe mixture where fission is provided by the He-3(n,p)H-3 reaction. Because the dominant ion in the system depends on the Xe fraction, the distribution functions cannot be determined without the simultaneous consideration of a detailed kinetic model. As is the case for wall sources of fission fragments, the resulting plasmas are essentially thermal but the electron distribution functions are non-Maxwellian.

  18. Thermionic nuclear reactor with internal heat distribution and multiple duct cooling

    DOEpatents

    Fisher, C.R.; Perry, L.W. Jr.

    1975-11-01

    A Thermionic Nuclear Reactor is described having multiple ribbon-like coolant ducts passing through the core, intertwined among the thermionic fuel elements to provide independent cooling paths. Heat pipes are disposed in the core between and adjacent to the thermionic fuel elements and the ribbon ducting, for the purpose of more uniformly distributing the heat of fission among the thermionic fuel elements and the ducts.

  19. Gaseous-fuel nuclear reactor research for multimegawatt power in space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thom, K.; Schneider, R. T.; Helmick, H. H.

    1977-01-01

    In the gaseous-fuel reactor concept, the fissile material is contained in a moderator-reflector cavity and exists in the form of a flowing gas or plasma separated from the cavity walls by means of fluid mechanical forces. Temperatures in excess of structural limitations are possible for low-specific-mass power and high-specific-impulse propulsion in space. Experiments have been conducted with a canister filled with enriched UF6 inserted into a beryllium-reflected cavity. A theoretically predicted critical mass of 6 kg was measured. The UF6 was also circulated through this cavity, demonstrating stable reactor operation with the fuel in motion. Because the flowing gaseous fuel can be continuously processed, the radioactive waste in this type of reactor can be kept small. Another potential of fissioning gases is the possibility of converting the kinetic energy of fission fragments directly into coherent electromagnetic radiation, the nuclear pumping of lasers. Numerous nuclear laser experiments indicate the possibility of transmitting power in space directly from fission energy. The estimated specific mass of a multimegawatt gaseous-fuel reactor power system is from 1 to 5 kg/kW while the companion laser-power receiver station would be much lower in specific mass.

  20. Cancer incidence among Finnish nuclear reactor workers.

    PubMed

    Auvinen, Anssi; Pukkala, Eero; Hyvönen, Hannu; Hakama, Matti; Rytömaa, Tapio

    2002-07-01

    Because of their well-documented exposures to repeated low doses of ionizing radiation, nuclear reactor workers offer an opportunity to assess cancer risk from low-dose radiation. A cohort of all 15,619 Finnish nuclear reactor workers was established through dose-monitoring records. A questionnaire survey revealed no substantial differences in consumption of tobacco or alcohol between different exposure groups nor between nuclear power company employees and contract workers. In the follow-up for cancer incidence, no clear excess in cancer incidence was observed overall, nor was any observed in any of the specific cancer types studied. There was little evidence for an association between cancer incidence and cumulative radiation dose, but the statistical power was limited. More precise estimates will be available from an international collaborative study of nuclear industry workers, including our cohort. PMID:12134527

  1. Fission Yield Measurements by Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass-Spectrometry

    SciTech Connect

    Irina Glagolenko; Bruce Hilton; Jeffrey Giglio; Daniel Cummings; Karl Grimm; Richard McKnight

    2009-11-01

    Correct prediction of the fission products inventory in irradiated nuclear fuels is essential for accurate estimation of fuel burnup, establishing proper requirements for spent fuel transportation and storage, materials accountability and nuclear forensics. Such prediction is impossible without accurate knowledge of neutron induced fission yields. Unfortunately, the accuracy of the fission yields reported in the ENDF/B-VII.0 library is not uniform across all of the data and much of the improvement is desired for certain isotopes and fission products. We discuss our measurements of cumulative fission yields in nuclear fuels irradiated in thermal and fast reactor spectra using Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry.

  2. Testing JEFF-3.1.1 and ENDF/B-VII.1 Decay and Fission Yield Nuclear Data Libraries with Fission Pulse Neutron Emission and Decay Heat Experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cabellos, O.; de Fusco, V.; Diez de la Obra, C. J.; Martinez, J. S.; Gonzalez, E.; Cano-Ott, D.; Alvarez-Velarde, F.

    2014-04-01

    The aim of this work is to test the present status of Evaluated Nuclear Decay and Fission Yield Data Libraries to predict decay heat and delayed neutron emission rate, average neutron energy and neutron delayed spectra after a neutron fission pulse. Calculations are performed with JEFF-3.1.1 and ENDF/B-VII.1, and these are compared with experimental values. An uncertainty propagation assessment of the current nuclear data uncertainties is performed.

  3. Nuclear reactor alignment plate configuration

    DOEpatents

    Altman, David A; Forsyth, David R; Smith, Richard E; Singleton, Norman R

    2014-01-28

    An alignment plate that is attached to a core barrel of a pressurized water reactor and fits within slots within a top plate of a lower core shroud and upper core plate to maintain lateral alignment of the reactor internals. The alignment plate is connected to the core barrel through two vertically-spaced dowel pins that extend from the outside surface of the core barrel through a reinforcement pad and into corresponding holes in the alignment plate. Additionally, threaded fasteners are inserted around the perimeter of the reinforcement pad and into the alignment plate to further secure the alignment plate to the core barrel. A fillet weld also is deposited around the perimeter of the reinforcement pad. To accomodate thermal growth between the alignment plate and the core barrel, a gap is left above, below and at both sides of one of the dowel pins in the alignment plate holes through with the dowel pins pass.

  4. Application of gaseous core reactors for transmutation of nuclear waste

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schnitzler, B. G.; Paternoster, R. R.; Schneider, R. T.

    1976-01-01

    An acceptable management scheme for high-level radioactive waste is vital to the nuclear industry. The hazard potential of the trans-uranic actinides and of key fission products is high due to their nuclear activity and/or chemical toxicity. Of particular concern are the very long-lived nuclides whose hazard potential remains high for hundreds of thousands of years. Neutron induced transmutation offers a promising technique for the treatment of problem wastes. Transmutation is unique as a waste management scheme in that it offers the potential for "destruction" of the hazardous nuclides by conversion to non-hazardous or more manageable nuclides. The transmutation potential of a thermal spectrum uranium hexafluoride fueled cavity reactor was examined. Initial studies focused on a heavy water moderated cavity reactor fueled with 5% enriched U-235-F6 and operating with an average thermal flux of 6 times 10 to the 14th power neutrons/sq cm-sec. The isotopes considered for transmutation were I-129, Am-241, Am-242m, Am-243, Cm-243, Cm-244, Cm-245, and Cm-246.

  5. Nuclear Data and the Oklo Natural Nuclear Reactors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gould, C. R.; Sharapov, E. I.; Sonzogni, A. A.

    2014-04-01

    Data from the Oklo natural nuclear reactors have enabled some of the most sensitive terrestrial tests of time variation of dimensionless fundamental constants. The constraints on variation of αEM, the fine structure constant are particular good, but depend on the reliability of the nuclear data, and on the reliability of the modeling of the reactor environment. We briefly review the history of these tests and discuss our recent work in 1) attempting to better bound the temperatures at which the reactors operated, 2) investigating whether the γ-ray fluxes in the reactors could have contributed to changing lutetium isotopic abundances and 3) determining whether lanthanum isotopic data could provide an alternate estimate of the neutron fluence.

  6. Technological Transfer from Research Nuclear Reactors to New Generation Nuclear Power Reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Radulescu, Laura; Pavelescu, Margarit

    2010-01-21

    The goal of this paper is the analysis of the technological transfer role in the nuclear field, with particular emphasis on nuclear reactors domain. The presentation is sustained by historical arguments. In this frame, it is very important to start with the achievements of the first nuclear systems, for instant those with natural uranium as fuel and heavy water as moderator, following in time through the history until the New Generation Nuclear Power Reactors.Starting with 1940, the accelerated development of the industry has implied the increase of the global demand for energy. In this respect, the nuclear energy could play an important role, being essentially an unlimited source of energy. However, the nuclear option faces the challenges of increasingly demanding safety requirements, economic competitiveness and public acceptance. Worldwide, a significant amount of experience has been accumulated during development, licensing, construction, and operation of nuclear power reactors. The experience gained is a strong basis for further improvements. Actually, the nuclear programs of many countries are addressing the development of advanced reactors, which are intended to have better economics, higher reliability, improved safety, and proliferation-resistant characteristics in order to overcome the current concerns about nuclear power. Advanced reactors, now under development, may help to meet the demand for energy power of both developed and developing countries as well as for district heating, desalination and for process heat.The paper gives historical examples that illustrate the steps pursued from first research nuclear reactors to present advanced power reactors. Emphasis was laid upon the fact that the progress is due to the great discoveries of the nuclear scientists using the technological transfer.

  7. Nanocrystalline SiC and Ti3SiC2 Alloys for Reactor Materials: Diffusion of Fission Product Surrogates

    SciTech Connect

    Henager, Charles H.; Jiang, Weilin

    2014-11-01

    MAX phases, such as titanium silicon carbide (Ti3SiC2), have a unique combination of both metallic and ceramic properties, which make them attractive for potential nuclear applications. Ti3SiC2 has been suggested in the literature as a possible fuel cladding material. Prior to the application, it is necessary to investigate diffusivities of fission products in the ternary compound at elevated temperatures. This study attempts to obtain relevant data and make an initial assessment for Ti3SiC2. Ion implantation was used to introduce fission product surrogates (Ag and Cs) and a noble metal (Au) in Ti3SiC2, SiC, and a dual-phase nanocomposite of Ti3SiC2/SiC synthesized at PNNL. Thermal annealing and in-situ Rutherford backscattering spectrometry (RBS) were employed to study the diffusivity of the various implanted species in the materials. In-situ RBS study of Ti3SiC2 implanted with Au ions at various temperatures was also performed. The experimental results indicate that the implanted Ag in SiC is immobile up to the highest temperature (1273 K) applied in this study; in contrast, significant out-diffusion of both Ag and Au in MAX phase Ti3SiC2 occurs during ion implantation at 873 K. Cs in Ti3SiC2 is found to diffuse during post-irradiation annealing at 973 K, and noticeable Cs release from the sample is observed. This study may suggest caution in using Ti3SiC2 as a fuel cladding material for advanced nuclear reactors operating at very high temperatures. Further studies of the related materials are recommended.

  8. The siting of UK nuclear reactors.

    PubMed

    Grimston, Malcolm; Nuttall, William J; Vaughan, Geoff

    2014-06-01

    Choosing a suitable site for a nuclear power station requires the consideration and balancing of several factors. Some 'physical' site characteristics, such as the local climate and the potential for seismic activity, will be generic to all reactors designs, while others, such as the availability of cooling water, the area of land required and geological conditions capable of sustaining the weight of the reactor and other buildings will to an extent be dependent on the particular design of reactor chosen (or alternatively the reactor design chosen may to an extent be dependent on the characteristics of an available site). However, one particularly interesting tension is a human and demographic one. On the one hand it is beneficial to place nuclear stations close to centres of population, to reduce transmission losses and other costs (including to the local environment) of transporting electricity over large distances from generator to consumer. On the other it is advantageous to place nuclear stations some distance away from such population centres in order to minimise the potential human consequences of a major release of radioactive materials in the (extremely unlikely) event of a major nuclear accident, not only in terms of direct exposure but also concerning the management of emergency planning, notably evacuation.This paper considers the emergence of policies aimed at managing this tension in the UK. In the first phase of nuclear development (roughly speaking 1945-1965) there was a highly cautious attitude, with installations being placed in remote rural locations with very low population density. The second phase (1965-1985) saw a more relaxed approach, allowing the development of AGR nuclear power stations (which with concrete pressure vessels were regarded as significantly safer) closer to population centres (in 'semi-urban' locations, notably at Hartlepool and Heysham). In the third phase (1985-2005) there was very little new nuclear development, Sizewell

  9. Nuclear reactor shutdown control rod assembly

    DOEpatents

    Bilibin, Konstantin

    1988-01-01

    A temperature responsive, self-actuated nuclear reactor shutdown control rod assembly 10. The upper end 18 of a lower drive line 17 fits within the lower end of an upper drive line 12. The lower end (not shown) of the lower drive line 17 is connected to a neutron absorber. During normal temperature conditions the lower drive line 17 is supported by detent means 22,26. When an overtemperature condition occurs thermal actuation means 34 urges ring 26 upwardly sufficiently to allow balls 22 to move radially outwardly thereby allowing lower drive line 17 to move downwardly toward the core of the nuclear reactor resulting in automatic reduction of the reactor powder.

  10. Damper mechanism for nuclear reactor control elements

    DOEpatents

    Taft, William Elwood

    1976-01-01

    A damper mechanism which provides a nuclear reactor control element decelerating function at the end of the scram stroke. The total damping function is produced by the combination of two assemblies, which operate in sequence. First, a tapered dashram assembly decelerates the control element to a lower velocity, after which a spring hydraulic damper assembly takes over to complete the final damping.

  11. Current Abstracts Nuclear Reactors and Technology

    SciTech Connect

    Bales, J.D.; Hicks, S.C.

    1993-01-01

    This publication Nuclear Reactors and Technology (NRT) announces on a monthly basis the current worldwide information available from the open literature on nuclear reactors and technology, including all aspects of power reactors, components and accessories, fuel elements, control systems, and materials. This publication contains the abstracts of DOE reports, journal articles, conference papers, patents, theses, and monographs added to the Energy Science and Technology Database during the past month. Also included are US information obtained through acquisition programs or interagency agreements and international information obtained through acquisition programs or interagency agreements and international information obtained through the International Energy Agency`s Energy Technology Data Exchange or government-to-government agreements. The digests in NRT and other citations to information on nuclear reactors back to 1948 are available for online searching and retrieval on the Energy Science and Technology Database and Nuclear Science Abstracts (NSA) database. Current information, added daily to the Energy Science and Technology Database, is available to DOE and its contractors through the DOE Integrated Technical Information System. Customized profiles can be developed to provide current information to meet each user`s needs.

  12. High Temperature Fission Chamber for He- and FLiBe-cooled Reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Bell, Zane W.; Giuliano, Dominic R.; Holcomb, David Eugene; Lance, Michael J.; Miller, Roger G.; Warmack, Robert J. Bruce; Wilson, Dane F.; Harrison, Mark J.

    2015-01-01

    We have evaluated candidate technologies for in-core fission chambers for high-temperature reactors to monitor power level via measurements of neutron flux from start-up through full power at up to 800°C. This research is important because there are no commercially available instruments capable of operating above 550 °C. Component materials and processes were investigated for fission chambers suitable for operation at 800 °C in reactors cooled by molten fluoride salt (FLiBe) or flowing He, with an emphasis placed on sensitivity (≥ 1 cps/nv), service lifetime (2 years at full power), and resistance to direct immersion in FLiBe. The latter gives the instrument the ability to survive accidents involving breach of a thimble. The device is envisioned to be a two-gap, three-electrode instrument constructed from concentric nickel-plated alumina cylinders and using a noble gas–nitrogen fill-gas. We report the results of measurements and calculations of the response of fill gasses, impurity migration in nickel alloy, brazing of the alumina insulator, and thermodynamic calculations.

  13. Heat pipe nuclear reactor for space power

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Koening, D. R.

    1976-01-01

    A heat-pipe-cooled nuclear reactor has been designed to provide 3.2 MWth to an out-of-core thermionic conversion system. The reactor is a fast reactor designed to operate at a nominal heat-pipe temperature of 1675 K. Each reactor fuel element consists of a hexagonal molybdenum block which is bonded along its axis to one end of a molybdenum/lithium-vapor heat pipe. The block is perforated with an array of longitudinal holes which are loaded with UO2 pellets. The heat pipe transfers heat directly to a string of six thermionic converters which are bonded along the other end of the heat pipe. An assembly of 90 such fuel elements forms a hexagonal core. The core is surrounded by a thermal radiation shield, a thin thermal neutron absorber, and a BeO reflector containing boron-loaded control drums.

  14. Passive heat transfer means for nuclear reactors

    DOEpatents

    Burelbach, James P.

    1984-01-01

    An improved passive cooling arrangement is disclosed for maintaining adjacent or related components of a nuclear reactor within specified temperature differences. Specifically, heat pipes are operatively interposed between the components, with the vaporizing section of the heat pipe proximate the hot component operable to cool it and the primary condensing section of the heat pipe proximate the other and cooler component operable to heat it. Each heat pipe further has a secondary condensing section that is located outwardly beyond the reactor confinement and in a secondary heat sink, such as air ambient the containment, that is cooler than the other reactor component. Means such as shrouding normally isolated the secondary condensing section from effective heat transfer with the heat sink, but a sensor responds to overheat conditions of the reactor to open the shrouding, which thereby increases the cooling capacity of the heat pipe. By having many such heat pipes, an emergency passive cooling system is defined that is operative without electrical power.

  15. Synfuel production in nuclear reactors

    DOEpatents

    Henning, C.D.

    Apparatus and method for producing synthetic fuels and synthetic fuel components by using a neutron source as the energy source, such as a fusion reactor. Neutron absorbers are disposed inside a reaction pipe and are heated by capturing neutrons from the neutron source. Synthetic fuel feedstock is then placed into contact with the heated neutron absorbers. The feedstock is heated and dissociates into its constituent synfuel components, or alternatively is at least preheated sufficiently to use in a subsequent electrolysis process to produce synthetic fuels and synthetic fuel components.

  16. SL-1 Accident Briefing Report - 1961 Nuclear Reactor Meltdown Educational Documentary

    ScienceCinema

    None

    2014-03-11

    U.S. Atomic Energy Commission (Idaho Operations Office) briefing about the SL-1 Nuclear Reactor Meltdown. The SL-1, or Stationary Low-Power Reactor Number One, was a United States Army experimental nuclear power reactor which underwent a steam explosion and meltdown on January 3, 1961, killing its three operators. The direct cause was the improper withdrawal of the central control rod, responsible for absorbing neutrons in the reactor core. The event is the only known fatal reactor accident in the United States. The accident released about 80 curies (3.0 TBq) of Iodine-131, which was not considered significant due to its location in a remote desert of Idaho. About 1,100 curies (41 TBq) of fission products were released into the atmosphere. The facility, located at the National Reactor Testing Station approximately 40 miles (64 km) west of Idaho Falls, Idaho, was part of the Army Nuclear Power Program and was known as the Argonne Low Power Reactor (ALPR) during its design and build phase. It was intended to provide electrical power and heat for small, remote military facilities, such as radar sites near the Arctic Circle, and those in the DEW Line. The design power was 3 MW (thermal). Operating power was 200 kW electrical and 400 kW thermal for space heating. In the accident, the core power level reached nearly 20 GW in just four milliseconds, precipitating the reactor accident and steam explosion.

  17. SL-1 Accident Briefing Report - 1961 Nuclear Reactor Meltdown Educational Documentary

    SciTech Connect

    2013-09-25

    U.S. Atomic Energy Commission (Idaho Operations Office) briefing about the SL-1 Nuclear Reactor Meltdown. The SL-1, or Stationary Low-Power Reactor Number One, was a United States Army experimental nuclear power reactor which underwent a steam explosion and meltdown on January 3, 1961, killing its three operators. The direct cause was the improper withdrawal of the central control rod, responsible for absorbing neutrons in the reactor core. The event is the only known fatal reactor accident in the United States. The accident released about 80 curies (3.0 TBq) of Iodine-131, which was not considered significant due to its location in a remote desert of Idaho. About 1,100 curies (41 TBq) of fission products were released into the atmosphere. The facility, located at the National Reactor Testing Station approximately 40 miles (64 km) west of Idaho Falls, Idaho, was part of the Army Nuclear Power Program and was known as the Argonne Low Power Reactor (ALPR) during its design and build phase. It was intended to provide electrical power and heat for small, remote military facilities, such as radar sites near the Arctic Circle, and those in the DEW Line. The design power was 3 MW (thermal). Operating power was 200 kW electrical and 400 kW thermal for space heating. In the accident, the core power level reached nearly 20 GW in just four milliseconds, precipitating the reactor accident and steam explosion.

  18. Five Lectures on Nuclear Reactors Presented at Cal Tech

    DOE R&D Accomplishments Database

    Weinberg, Alvin M.

    1956-02-10

    The basic issues involved in the physics and engineering of nuclear reactors are summarized. Topics discussed include theory of reactor design, technical problems in power reactors, physical problems in nuclear power production, and future developments in nuclear power. (C.H.)

  19. A fission-fusion hybrid reactor in steady-state L-mode tokamak configuration with natural uranium

    SciTech Connect

    Reed, Mark; Parker, Ronald R.; Forget, Benoit

    2012-06-19

    This work develops a conceptual design for a fusion-fission hybrid reactor operating in steady-state L-mode tokamak configuration with a subcritical natural or depleted uranium pebble bed blanket. A liquid lithium-lead alloy breeds enough tritium to replenish that consumed by the D-T fusion reaction. The fission blanket augments the fusion power such that the fusion core itself need not have a high power gain, thus allowing for fully non-inductive (steady-state) low confinement mode (L-mode) operation at relatively small physical dimensions. A neutron transport Monte Carlo code models the natural uranium fission blanket. Maximizing the fission power gain while breeding sufficient tritium allows for the selection of an optimal set of blanket parameters, which yields a maximum prudent fission power gain of approximately 7. A 0-D tokamak model suffices to analyze approximate tokamak operating conditions. This fission blanket would allow the fusion component of a hybrid reactor with the same dimensions as ITER to operate in steady-state L-mode very comfortably with a fusion power gain of 6.7 and a thermal fusion power of 2.1 GW. Taking this further can determine the approximate minimum scale for a steady-state L-mode tokamak hybrid reactor, which is a major radius of 5.2 m and an aspect ratio of 2.8. This minimum scale device operates barely within the steady-state L-mode realm with a thermal fusion power of 1.7 GW. Basic thermal hydraulic analysis demonstrates that pressurized helium could cool the pebble bed fission blanket with a flow rate below 10 m/s. The Brayton cycle thermal efficiency is 41%. This reactor, dubbed the Steady-state L-mode non-Enriched Uranium Tokamak Hybrid (SLEUTH), with its very fast neutron spectrum, could be superior to pure fission reactors in terms of breeding fissile fuel and transmuting deleterious fission products. It would likely function best as a prolific plutonium breeder, and the plutonium it produces could actually be more

  20. A fission-fusion hybrid reactor in steady-state L-mode tokamak configuration with natural uranium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reed, Mark; Parker, Ronald R.; Forget, Benoit

    2012-06-01

    This work develops a conceptual design for a fusion-fission hybrid reactor operating in steady-state L-mode tokamak configuration with a subcritical natural or depleted uranium pebble bed blanket. A liquid lithium-lead alloy breeds enough tritium to replenish that consumed by the D-T fusion reaction. The fission blanket augments the fusion power such that the fusion core itself need not have a high power gain, thus allowing for fully non-inductive (steady-state) low confinement mode (L-mode) operation at relatively small physical dimensions. A neutron transport Monte Carlo code models the natural uranium fission blanket. Maximizing the fission power gain while breeding sufficient tritium allows for the selection of an optimal set of blanket parameters, which yields a maximum prudent fission power gain of approximately 7. A 0-D tokamak model suffices to analyze approximate tokamak operating conditions. This fission blanket would allow the fusion component of a hybrid reactor with the same dimensions as ITER to operate in steady-state L-mode very comfortably with a fusion power gain of 6.7 and a thermal fusion power of 2.1 GW. Taking this further can determine the approximate minimum scale for a steady-state L-mode tokamak hybrid reactor, which is a major radius of 5.2 m and an aspect ratio of 2.8. This minimum scale device operates barely within the steady-state L-mode realm with a thermal fusion power of 1.7 GW. Basic thermal hydraulic analysis demonstrates that pressurized helium could cool the pebble bed fission blanket with a flow rate below 10 m/s. The Brayton cycle thermal efficiency is 41%. This reactor, dubbed the Steady-state L-mode non-Enriched Uranium Tokamak Hybrid (SLEUTH), with its very fast neutron spectrum, could be superior to pure fission reactors in terms of breeding fissile fuel and transmuting deleterious fission products. It would likely function best as a prolific plutonium breeder, and the plutonium it produces could actually be more

  1. Eugene P. Wigner's Visionary Contributions to Generations-I through IV Fission Reactors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carré, Frank

    2014-09-01

    Among Europe's greatest scientists who fled to Britain and America in the 1930s, Eugene P. Wigner made instrumental advances in reactor physics, reactor design and technology, and spent nuclear fuel processing for both purposes of developing atomic weapons during world-war II and nuclear power afterwards. Wigner who had training in chemical engineering and self-education in physics first gained recognition for his remarkable articles and books on applications of Group theory to Quantum mechanics, Solid state physics and other topics that opened new branches of Physics.

  2. A prototype expert system for the monitoring of defected nuclear fuel elements in Canada deuterium uranium reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Lewis, B.J.; Green, R.J. ); Che, C.W.T. )

    1992-06-01

    This paper reports on a prototype expert system for fuel failure monitoring in Canada deuterium uranium (CANDU) power reactors. Based on a coolant activity analysis, the system is able to provide information in an operating reactor on the number of fuel failures, the average defect size, and the amount of tramp uranium deposited on the in-core surfaces of the primary heat transport system. The fission product release model used in the system is based on results from an in-reactor experimental program at Chalk River Nuclear Laboratories. The expert system is validated against fuel failure data from a number of CANDU power reactors.

  3. An Inconvenient History: the Nuclear-Fission Display in the Deutsches Museum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sime, Ruth Lewin

    2010-06-01

    One of the longstanding attractions of the Deutsches Museum in Munich, Germany, has been its display of the apparatus associated with the discovery of nuclear fission. Although the discovery involved three scientists, Otto Hahn, Lise Meitner, and Fritz Strassmann, the fission display was designated for over 30 years as the Arbeitstisch von Otto Hahn (Otto Hahn’s Worktable), with Strassmann mentioned peripherally and Meitner not at all, and it was not until the early 1990s that the display was revised to include all three codiscoverers more equitably. I examine the creation of the fission display in the context of the postwar German culture of silencing the National Socialist past, and trace the eventual transformation of the display into a contemporary exhibit that more accurately represents the scientific history of the fission discovery.

  4. Power deposition in volumetric /U-235/F6-He fission-pumped nuclear lasers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson, J. W.; Deyoung, R. J.

    1978-01-01

    The power deposition in (U-235)F6-He fission-pumped nuclear lasers is studied. Specifically, means to maximize the energy density in the He gas are assessed. Primary loss mechanisms are identified as the fission-fragment transport to the laser-cell wall and UF6 gas excitation. The losses are thus strongly dependent on UF6 concentration. It is found that maximum power will be deposited in a laser tube when the tube radius is as large as the range of fission fragments. Experimental results indicate that when the tube radius equals the fission-fragment range, the ratio of a UF6 partial pressure to total pressure is 0.15, and the UF6-He mixing ratio is 1:6, maximum power will be deposited.

  5. FUEL ELEMENT FOR NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Dickson, J.J.

    1963-09-24

    A method is described whereby fuel tubes or pins are cut, loaded with fuel pellets and a heat transfer medium, sealed at each end with slotted fittings, and assembled into a rectangular tube bundle to form a fuel element. The tubes comprising the fuel element are laterally connected between their ends by clips and tabs to form a linear group of spaced parallel tubes, which receive their vertical support by resting on a grid. The advantages of this method are that it permits elimination of structural material (e.g., fuel-element cans) within the reactor core, and removal of at least one fuel pin from an element and replacement thereof so that a burnable poison may be utilized during the core lifetime. (AEC)

  6. Simulation of a marine nuclear reactor

    SciTech Connect

    Kusunoki, Tsuyoshi; Kyouya, Masahiko; Kobayashi, Hideo; Ochiai, Masaaki

    1995-02-01

    A Nuclear-powered ship Engineering Simulation SYstem (NESSY) has been developed by the Japan Atomic Energy Research Institute as an advanced design tool for research and development of future marine reactors. A marine reactor must respond to changing loads and to the ship`s motions because of the ship`s maneuvering and its presence in a marine environment. The NESSY has combined programs for the reactor plant behavior calculations and the ship`s motion calculations. Thus, it can simulate reactor power fluctuations caused by changing loads and the ship`s motions. It can also simulate the behavior of water in the pressurizer and steam generators. This water sloshes in response to the ship`s motions. The performance of NESSY has been verified by comparing the simulation calculations with the measured data obtained by experiments performed using the nuclear ship Mutsu. The effects of changing loads and the ship`s motions on the reactor behavior can be accurately simulated by NESSY.

  7. Nuclear reactor control room construction

    DOEpatents

    Lamuro, Robert C.; Orr, Richard

    1993-01-01

    A control room 10 for a nuclear plant is disclosed. In the control room, objects 12, 20, 22, 26, 30 are no less than four inches from walls 10.2. A ceiling 32 contains cooling fins 35 that extend downwards toward the floor from metal plates 34. A concrete slab 33 is poured over the plates. Studs 36 are welded to the plates and are encased in the concrete.

  8. Nuclear reactor control room construction

    DOEpatents

    Lamuro, R.C.; Orr, R.

    1993-11-16

    A control room for a nuclear plant is disclosed. In the control room, objects labelled 12, 20, 22, 26, 30 in the drawing are no less than four inches from walls labelled 10.2. A ceiling contains cooling fins that extend downwards toward the floor from metal plates. A concrete slab is poured over the plates. Studs are welded to the plates and are encased in the concrete. 6 figures.

  9. FUEL COMPOSITION FOR NUCLEAR REACTORS

    DOEpatents

    Andersen, J.C.

    1963-08-01

    A process for making refractory nuclear fuel elements involves heating uranium and silicon powders in an inert atmosphere to 1600 to 1800 deg C to form USi/sub 3/; adding silicon carbide, carbon, 15% by weight of nickel and aluminum, and possibly also molybdenum and silicon powders; shaping the mixture; and heating to 1700 to 2050 deg C again in an inert atmosphere. Information on obtaining specific compositions is included. (AEC)

  10. Neutron Damage in the Plasma Chamber First Wall of the GCFTR-2 Fusion-Fission Hybrid Reactor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinto, L. N.; Gonnelli, E.; Rossi, P. C. R.; Carluccio, T.; dos Santos, A.

    2015-07-01

    The successful development of energy-conversion machines based on either nuclear fission or fusion is completely dependent on the behaviour of the engineering materials used to construct the fuel containment and primary heat extraction systems. Such materials must be designed in order to maintain their structural integrity and dimensional stability in an environment involving high temperatures and heat fluxes, corrosive media, high stresses and intense neutron fluxes. However, despite the various others damage issues, such as the effects of plasma radiation and particle flux, the neutron flux is sufficiently energetic to displace atoms from their crystalline lattice sites. It is clear that the understanding of the neutron damage is essential for the development and safe operation of nuclear systems. Considering this context, the work presents a study of neutron damage in the Gas Cooled Fast Transmutation Reactor (GCFTR-2) driven by a Tokamak D-T fusion neutron source of 14.03 MeV. The theoretical analysis was performed by MCNP-5 and the ENDF/B-VII.1 neutron data library. A brief discussion about the determination of the radiation damage is presented, along with an analysis of the total neutron energy deposition in seven points through the material of the plasma source wall (PSW), in which was considered the HT-9 steel. The neutron flux was subdivided into three energy groups and their behaviour through the material was also examined.

  11. ADRIANA project: Identification of research infrastructures for the SFR, within the frame of European industrial initiative for sustainable nuclear fission

    SciTech Connect

    Latge, C.; Gastaldi, O.; Vala, L.; Gerbeth, G.; Homann, C.; Benoit, P.; Papin, J.; Girault, N.; Roelofs, F.; Bucenieks, I.; Paffumi, E.; Ciampichetti, A.

    2012-07-01

    Fast neutron reactors have a large potential as sustainable energy source. In particular, Sodium Fast Reactors (SFR) with a closed fuel cycle and potential for minor actinide burning may allow minimization of volume and heat load of high level waste and provide improved use of natural resources (as compared to only 1% energy recovery in the current once-through fuel cycle, with Thermal Reactors, such as EPR). The coordinating action ADRIANA (Advanced Reactor Initiative And Network Arrangement) has been initiated to set up a network dedicated to the construction and operation of research infrastructures in support of developments for the European Industrial Initiative for sustainable nuclear fission. The Project sets these objectives for the following reactor systems and related technologies: Sodium Fast Reactor (SFR), Lead Fast Reactor (LFR), Gas Fast Reactor (GFR, including very high temperature technologies), Instrumentation, diagnostics and experimental devices, Irradiation facilities and hot laboratories, Zero power reactors. Among the fast reactor systems, the sodium cooled reactor has the most comprehensive technological basis as result of the experience gained from worldwide operation of several experimental, prototype and commercial size reactors, since the forties (see Appendix I). This concept is currently considered as the reference, within the European strategy. Innovations are needed to further enhance safety, reduce capital cost and improve efficiency reliability and operability, making the Generation IV SFR an attractive option for electricity production. Currently, in France, a moderate (500 to 600 MWe) power demonstrator named ASTRID (Advanced Sodium Test Reactor for Industrial Demonstration) has been proposed and endorsed by EU. Presently, the reference configuration is a pool concept. General R and D needs have been identified and experimental facilities required to satisfy these needs have been listed for the following domains: material and

  12. Closing nuclear fuel cycle with fast reactors: problems and prospects

    SciTech Connect

    Shadrin, A.; Dvoeglazov, K.; Ivanov, V.

    2013-07-01

    The closed nuclear fuel cycle (CNFC) with fast reactors (FR) is the most promising way of nuclear energetics development because it prevents spent nuclear fuel (SNF) accumulation and minimizes radwaste volume due to minor actinides (MA) transmutation. CNFC with FR requires the elaboration of safety, environmentally acceptable and economically effective methods of treatment of SNF with high burn-up and low cooling time. The up-to-date industrially implemented SNF reprocessing technologies based on hydrometallurgical methods are not suitable for the reprocessing of SNF with high burn-up and low cooling time. The alternative dry methods (such as electrorefining in molten salts or fluoride technologies) applicable for such SNF reprocessing have not found implementation at industrial scale. So the cost of SNF reprocessing by means of dry technologies can hardly be estimated. Another problem of dry technologies is the recovery of fissionable materials pure enough for dense fuel fabrication. A combination of technical solutions performed with hydrometallurgical and dry technologies (pyro-technology) is proposed and it appears to be a promising way for the elaboration of economically, ecologically and socially accepted technology of FR SNF management. This paper deals with discussion of main principle of dry and aqueous operations combination that probably would provide safety and economic efficiency of the FR SNF reprocessing. (authors)

  13. Antineutrinos from nuclear reactors: recent oscillation measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dwyer, D. A.

    2015-02-01

    Nuclear reactors are the most intense man-made source of antineutrinos, providing a useful tool for the study of these particles. Oscillation due to the neutrino mixing angle {{θ }13} is revealed by the disappearance of reactor {{\\bar{ν }}e} over ˜km distances. Use of additional identical detectors located near nuclear reactors reduce systematic uncertainties related to reactor {{\\bar{ν }}e} emission and detector efficiency, significantly improving the sensitivity of oscillation measurements. The Double Chooz, RENO, and Daya Bay experiments set out in search of {{θ }13} using these techniques. All three experiments have recently observed reactor {{\\bar{ν }}e} disappearance, and have estimated values for {{θ }13} of 9.3◦ ± 2.1°, 9.2◦ ± 0.9°, and 8.7◦ ± 0.4° respectively. The energy-dependence of {{\\bar{ν }}e} disappearance has also allowed measurement of the effective neutrino mass difference, \\mid Δ mee2\\mid ≈ \\mid Δ m312\\mid . Comparison with \\mid Δ mμ μ 2\\mid ≈ \\mid Δ m322\\mid from accelerator {{ν }μ } measurements supports the three-flavor model of neutrino oscillation. The current generation of reactor {{\\bar{ν }}e} experiments are expected to reach ˜3% precision in both {{θ }13} and \\mid Δ mee2\\mid . Precise knowledge of these parameters aids interpretation of planned {{ν }μ } measurements, and allows future experiments to probe the neutrino mass hierarchy and possible CP-violation in neutrino oscillation. Absolute measurements of the energy spectra of {{\\bar{ν }}e} deviate from existing models of reactor emission, particularly in the range of 5-7 MeV.

  14. Review of nuclear data improvement needs for nuclear radiation measurement techniques used at the CEA experimental reactor facilities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Destouches, Christophe

    2016-03-01

    The constant improvement of the neutron and gamma calculation codes used in experimental nuclear reactors goes hand in hand with that of the associated nuclear data libraries. The validation of these calculation schemes always requires the confrontation with integral experiments performed in experimental reactors to be completed. Nuclear data of interest, straight as cross sections, or elaborated ones such as reactivity, are always derived from a reaction rate measurement which is the only measurable parameter in a nuclear sensor. So, in order to derive physical parameters from the electric signal of the sensor, one needs specific nuclear data libraries. This paper presents successively the main features of the measurement techniques used in the CEA experimental reactor facilities for the on-line and offline neutron/gamma flux characterizations: reactor dosimetry, neutron flux measurements with miniature fission chambers and Self Power Neutron Detector (SPND) and gamma flux measurements with chamber ionization and TLD. For each technique, the nuclear data necessary for their interpretation will be presented, the main identified needs for improvement identified and an analysis of their impact on the quality of the measurement. Finally, a synthesis of the study will be done.

  15. Distributed computing and nuclear reactor analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, F.B.; Derstine, K.L.; Blomquist, R.N.

    1994-03-01

    Large-scale scientific and engineering calculations for nuclear reactor analysis can now be carried out effectively in a distributed computing environment, at costs far lower than for traditional mainframes. The distributed computing environment must include support for traditional system services, such as a queuing system for batch work, reliable filesystem backups, and parallel processing capabilities for large jobs. All ANL computer codes for reactor analysis have been adapted successfully to a distributed system based on workstations and X-terminals. Distributed parallel processing has been demonstrated to be effective for long-running Monte Carlo calculations.

  16. Acoustic transducer for nuclear reactor monitoring

    DOEpatents

    Ahlgren, Frederic F.; Scott, Paul F.

    1977-01-01

    A transducer to monitor a parameter and produce an acoustic signal from which the monitored parameter can be recovered. The transducer comprises a modified Galton whistle which emits a narrow band acoustic signal having a frequency dependent upon the parameter being monitored, such as the temperature of the cooling media of a nuclear reactor. Multiple locations within a reactor are monitored simultaneously by a remote acoustic receiver by providing a plurality of transducers each designed so that the acoustic signal it emits has a frequency distinct from the frequencies of signals emitted by the other transducers, whereby each signal can be unambiguously related to a particular transducer.

  17. Secondary coolant circuit for nuclear-reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Brachet, A.

    1981-10-06

    A secondary coolant circuit for a nuclear-reactor of the liquid metal cooled type is described. The circuit comprises at least one intermediate exchanger mounted in the vessel of said reactor, Also included is a steam-generator for the exchange of calories between the secondary liquid-metal flowing through said secondary circuit and water-steam, at least one pump for circulating said secondary sodium and one tank for storing said secondary liquid-metal andrecovering those products generated by a possible liquid-metal-water reaction in said steam-generator.

  18. Reactor design for nuclear electric propulsion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Koenig, D. R.; Ranken, W. A.

    1979-01-01

    The paper analyzes the consequences of heat pipe failures, that resulted in modifications to the basic design of a heat-pipe cooled, fast spectrum nuclear reactor and led to consideration of an entirely different core design. The new design features an integral laminated core configuration consisting of alternating layers of UO2 and molybdenum sheets that span the diameter of the core. Design characteristics are presented and compared for two reactors. A conceptual design for a heat exchanger between the core and the thermionic converter assembly is described. This heat exchanger would provide design and fabrication decoupling of these two assemblies.

  19. Rodded shutdown system for a nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Golden, Martin P.; Govi, Aldo R.

    1978-01-01

    A top mounted nuclear reactor diverse rodded shutdown system utilizing gas fed into a pressure bearing bellows region sealed at the upper extremity to an armature. The armature is attached to a neutron absorber assembly by a series of shafts and connecting means. The armature is held in an uppermost position by an electromagnet assembly or by pressurized gas in a second embodiment. Deenergizing the electromagnet assembly, or venting the pressurized gas, causes the armature to fall by the force of gravity, thereby lowering the attached absorber assembly into the reactor core.

  20. Non-Nuclear Testing of Fission Technologies at NASA MSFC

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Houts, Robert G.; Pearson, J. Boise; Aschenbrenner, Kenneth C.; Bradley, David E.; Dickens, Ricky E.; Emrich, William J.; Garber, Anne E.; Godfroy, Thomas J.; Harper, Roger T.; Martin, Jim J.; Polzin, Kurt A.; Schoenfeld, Michael P.; Webster, Kenneth L.

    2011-01-01

    Highly realistic non-nuclear testing can be used to investigate and resolve potential issues with space nuclear power and propulsion systems. Non-nuclear testing is particularly useful for systems designed with fuels and materials operating within their demonstrated nuclear performance envelope. Non-nuclear testing also provides an excellent way for screening potential advanced fuels and materials prior to nuclear testing, and for investigating innovative geometries and operating regimes. Non-nuclear testing allows thermal hydraulic, heat transfer, structural, integration, safety, operational, performance, and other potential issues to be investigated and resolved with a greater degree of flexibility and at reduced cost and schedule compared to nuclear testing. The primary limit of non-nuclear testing is that nuclear characteristics and potential nuclear issues cannot be directly investigated. However, non-nuclear testing can be used to augment the potential benefit from any nuclear testing that may be required for space nuclear system design and development. This paper describes previous and ongoing non-nuclear testing related to space nuclear systems at NASA s Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC).

  1. ENDF/B-VII.1 Nuclear Data for Science and Technology: Cross Sections, Covariances, Fission Product Yields and Decay Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chadwick, M. B.; Herman, M.; Obložinský, P.; Dunn, M. E.; Danon, Y.; Kahler, A. C.; Smith, D. L.; Pritychenko, B.; Arbanas, G.; Arcilla, R.; Brewer, R.; Brown, D. A.; Capote, R.; Carlson, A. D.; Cho, Y. S.; Derrien, H.; Guber, K.; Hale, G. M.; Hoblit, S.; Holloway, S.; Johnson, T. D.; Kawano, T.; Kiedrowski, B. C.; Kim, H.; Kunieda, S.; Larson, N. M.; Leal, L.; Lestone, J. P.; Little, R. C.; McCutchan, E. A.; MacFarlane, R. E.; MacInnes, M.; Mattoon, C. M.; McKnight, R. D.; Mughabghab, S. F.; Nobre, G. P. A.; Palmiotti, G.; Palumbo, A.; Pigni, M. T.; Pronyaev, V. G.; Sayer, R. O.; Sonzogni, A. A.; Summers, N. C.; Talou, P.; Thompson, I. J.; Trkov, A.; Vogt, R. L.; van der Marck, S. C.; Wallner, A.; White, M. C.; Wiarda, D.; Young, P. G.

    2011-12-01

    of MCNP simulations of criticality benchmarks, with improved performance coming from new structural material evaluations, especially for Ti, Mn, Cr, Zr and W. For Be we see some improvements although the fast assembly data appear to be mutually inconsistent. Actinide cross section updates are also assessed through comparisons of fission and capture reaction rate measurements in critical assemblies and fast reactors, and improvements are evident. Maxwellian-averaged capture cross sections at 30 keV are also provided for astrophysics applications. We describe the cross section evaluations that have been updated for ENDF/B-VII.1 and the measured data and calculations that motivated the changes, and therefore this paper augments the ENDF/B-VII.0 publication [M. B. Chadwick, P. Obložinský, M. Herman, N. M. Greene, R. D. McKnight, D. L. Smith, P. G. Young, R. E. MacFarlane, G. M. Hale, S. C. Frankle, A. C. Kahler, T. Kawano, R. C. Little, D. G. Madland, P. Moller, R. D. Mosteller, P. R. Page, P. Talou, H. Trellue, M. C. White, W. B. Wilson, R. Arcilla, C. L. Dunford, S. F. Mughabghab, B. Pritychenko, D. Rochman, A. A. Sonzogni, C. R. Lubitz, T. H. Trumbull, J. P. Weinman, D. A. Br, D. E. Cullen, D. P. Heinrichs, D. P. McNabb, H. Derrien, M. E. Dunn, N. M. Larson, L. C. Leal, A. D. Carlson, R. C. Block, J. B. Briggs, E. T. Cheng, H. C. Huria, M. L. Zerkle, K. S. Kozier, A. Courcelle, V. Pronyaev, and S. C. van der Marck, "ENDF/B-VII.0: Next Generation Evaluated Nuclear Data Library for Nuclear Science and Technology," Nuclear Data Sheets 107, 2931 (2006)].

  2. A dumbbell model with five parameters describing nuclear fusion or fission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Qian; Shangguan, Dan-Hua; Bao, Jing-Dong

    2013-01-01

    We propose a five-parameter dumbbell model to describe the fusion and fission processes of massive nuclei, where the collective variables are: the distance ρ between the center-of-mass of two fusing nuclei, the neck parameter υ, asymmetry D, two deformation variables β1 and β2. The present model has macroscopic qualitative expression of polarization and nuclear collision of head to head, sphere to sphere, waist to waist and so on. The conception of the “projectile eating target" based on open mouth and swallow is proposed to describe the nuclear fusion process, and our understanding of the probability of fusion and quasi-fission is in agreement with some previous work. The calculated fission barriers of a lot of compound nuclei are compared with the experimental data.

  3. Particle bed reactor nuclear rocket concept

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ludewig, Hans

    1991-01-01

    The particle bed reactor nuclear rocket concept consists of fuel particles (in this case (U,Zr)C with an outer coat of zirconium carbide). These particles are packed in an annular bed surrounded by two frits (porous tubes) forming a fuel element; the outer one being a cold frit, the inner one being a hot frit. The fuel element are cooled by hydrogen passing in through the moderator. These elements are assembled in a reactor assembly in a hexagonal pattern. The reactor can be either reflected or not, depending on the design, and either 19 or 37 elements, are used. Propellant enters in the top, passes through the moderator fuel element and out through the nozzle. Beryllium used for the moderator in this particular design to withstand the high radiation exposure implied by the long run times.

  4. Method for automatically scramming a nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Ougouag, Abderrafi M.; Schultz, Richard R.; Terry, William K.

    2005-12-27

    An automatically scramming nuclear reactor system. One embodiment comprises a core having a coolant inlet end and a coolant outlet end. A cooling system operatively associated with the core provides coolant to the coolant inlet end and removes heated coolant from the coolant outlet end, thus maintaining a pressure differential therebetween during a normal operating condition of the nuclear reactor system. A guide tube is positioned within the core with a first end of the guide tube in fluid communication with the coolant inlet end of the core, and a second end of the guide tube in fluid communication with the coolant outlet end of the core. A control element is positioned within the guide tube and is movable therein between upper and lower positions, and automatically falls under the action of gravity to the lower position when the pressure differential drops below a safe pressure differential.

  5. Power conditioning for space nuclear reactor systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Berman, Baruch

    1987-01-01

    This paper addresses the power conditioning subsystem for both Stirling and Brayton conversion of space nuclear reactor systems. Included are the requirements summary, trade results related to subsystem implementation, subsystem description, voltage level versus weight, efficiency and operational integrity, components selection, and shielding considerations. The discussion is supported by pertinent circuit and block diagrams. Summary conclusions and recommendations derived from the above studies are included.

  6. Some views on nuclear reactor safety

    SciTech Connect

    Tanguy, P.Y.

    1995-04-01

    This document is the text of a speech given by Pierre Y. Tanguy (Electricite de France) at the 22nd Water Reactor Safety Meeting held in Bethesda, MD in 1994. He describes the EDF nuclear program in broad terms and proceeds to discuss operational safety results with EDF plants. The speaker also outlines actions to enhance safety planned for the future, and he briefly mentions French cooperation with the Chinese on the Daya Bay project.

  7. Oklo: natural fission reactor program. Progress report, July 1-September 30, 1979

    SciTech Connect

    Norris, A.E.

    1980-01-01

    Nearly 200 samples were collected at the Oklo mine in Gabon this quarter for shipment to the United States to continue studies of lead, ruthenium, and technetium migration around natural fission reactors. The first analyses of samples collected near a rich uranium ore body in Canada show the presence of radiogenic lead in pyrite and sandstone materials. Analyses of additional samples are underway to permit the interpretation of the data in terms of transport paths. A technique was developed this quarter to eliminate the interference of organic materials during the mass spectrometric analyses of ruthenium in Oklo samples with high asphaltic contents. A proposal was drafted for a study of naturally occurring radionuclide migration at rich uranium ore bodies in Australia to be performed jointly by the US Department of Energy and the Australian Atomic Energy Commission.

  8. Detection of uranium-based nuclear weapons using neutron-induced fission

    SciTech Connect

    Moss, C.E.; Byrd, R.C.; Feldman, W.C.; Auchampaugh, G.F.; Estes, G.P.; Ewing, R.I.; Marlow, K.W.

    1991-12-01

    Although plutonium-based nuclear weapons can usually be detected by their spontaneous emission of neutrons and gammas, the radiation emitted by weapons based entirely on highly-enriched uranium can often be easily shielded. Verification of a treaty that limits the number of such weapons may require an active technique, such as interrogating the suspect assembly with an external neutron source and measuring the number of fission neutrons produced. Difficulties include distinguishing between source and fission neutrons, the variations in yield for different materials and geometries, and the possibility of non-nuclear weapons that may contain significant amounts of fissionable depleted uranium. We describe simple measurements that test the induced-fission technique using an isotopic Am-Li source, an novel energy-sensitive neutron detector, and several small assemblies containing {sup 235}U, {sup 238}U, lead, and polyethylene. In all cases studied, the neutron yields above the source energy are larger for the {sup 235}U assemblies than for assemblies containing only lead or depleted uranium. For more complex geometries, corrections for source transmission may be necessary. The results are promising enough to recommend further experiments and calculations using examples of realistic nuclear and non-nuclear weapons. 5 refs., 11 figs.

  9. COPAR-FD. Release of Metallic Fission Products from Coated Nuclear Fuel Particles

    SciTech Connect

    Tzung, F.; Richards, M.

    1992-09-01

    COPAR-FD is used to calculate the release of metallic fission products from coated nuclear fuel particles, using a finite-difference solution of the governing partial differential equation. COPAR-FD interfaces with the TRAMP and TRAFIC codes for calculating transport in and release from graphite fuel blocks.

  10. Politics, Chemistry, and the Discovery of Nuclear Fission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wiesner, Emilie; Settle, Frank A., Jr.

    2001-07-01

    The discovery of fission is an interesting scientific saga involving the fundamentals of chemistry and physics. It is played out in the late 1930s on a European stage. Lise Meitner and Otto Hahn head a cast of characters that include scientific notables Fritz Strassmann, Otto Frisch, James Chadwick, Enrico Fermi, Ida Noddack, Irene Curie, and Neils Bohr. The plot includes the scientific method, the interdependence of chemistry and physics, the influence of external politics, and human frailty. The events surrounding this discovery did not allow the scientists involved to receive equal recognition. Fortunately, the passage of time and extensive historical research are restoring equality.

  11. Oklo reactors and implications for nuclear science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, E. D.; Gould, C. R.; Sharapov, E. I.

    2014-04-01

    We summarize the nuclear physics interests in the Oklo natural nuclear reactors, focusing particularly on developments over the past two decades. Modeling of the reactors has become increasingly sophisticated, employing Monte Carlo simulations with realistic geometries and materials that can generate both the thermal and epithermal fractions. The water content and the temperatures of the reactors have been uncertain parameters. We discuss recent work pointing to lower temperatures than earlier assumed. Nuclear cross-sections are input to all Oklo modeling and we discuss a parameter, the 175Lu ground state cross-section for thermal neutron capture leading to the isomer 176mLu, that warrants further investigation. Studies of the time dependence of dimensionless fundamental constants have been a driver for much of the recent work on Oklo. We critically review neutron resonance energy shifts and their dependence on the fine structure constant α and the ratio Xq = mq/Λ (where mq is the average of the u and d current quark masses and Λ is the mass scale of quantum chromodynamics (QCD)). We suggest a formula for the combined sensitivity to α and Xq that exhibits the dependence on proton number Z and mass number A, potentially allowing quantum electrodynamic (QED) and QCD effects to be disentangled if a broader range of isotopic abundance data becomes available.

  12. Study Gives Good Odds on Nuclear Reactor Safety

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Russell, Cristine

    1974-01-01

    Summarized is data from a recent study on nuclear reactor safety completed by Norman C. Rasmussen and others. Non-nuclear events are about 10,000 times more likely to produce large accidents than nuclear plants. (RH)

  13. Hybrid reactors. [Fuel cycle

    SciTech Connect

    Moir, R.W.

    1980-09-09

    The rationale for hybrid fusion-fission reactors is the production of fissile fuel for fission reactors. A new class of reactor, the fission-suppressed hybrid promises unusually good safety features as well as the ability to support 25 light-water reactors of the same nuclear power rating, or even more high-conversion-ratio reactors such as the heavy-water type. One 4000-MW nuclear hybrid can produce 7200 kg of /sup 233/U per year. To obtain good economics, injector efficiency times plasma gain (eta/sub i/Q) should be greater than 2, the wall load should be greater than 1 MW.m/sup -2/, and the hybrid should cost less than 6 times the cost of a light-water reactor. Introduction rates for the fission-suppressed hybrid are usually rapid.

  14. Thermoacoustic Thermometry for Nuclear Reactor Monitoring

    SciTech Connect

    James A. Smith; Dale K. Kotter; Steven L. Garrett; Randall A. Ali

    2013-06-01

    On Friday, March 11, 2011, at 2:46pm (Japan Standard Trme), the Tohoku region on the east coast of northern Japan experi­enced what would become known as the largest earthquake in the country's history at magnitude 9.0 on the Richter scale. The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant suffered exten­sive and irreversible damage. Six operating units were at the site, each with a boiling water reactor. When the earthquake struck, three of the six reactors were operating and the others were in a periodic inspection outage phase. In one reactor, all of the fuel had been relocated to a spent fuel pool in the reactor building. The seismic acceleration caused by the earthquake brought the three operating units to an automatic shutdown. Since there was damage to the power transmission lines, the emergency diesel generators (EDG) were automat­ically started to ensure continued cooling of the reactors and spent fuel pools. The situation was under control until the tsunami hit about forty-five minutes later with a maximum wave height of approximately 15 meters, which was three times taller than the sea wall of 5m. The influx of water submerged the EDGs, the electrical switchgear, and dc batteries, resulting in the total loss of power to five of the six reactors. The flooding also resulted in the loss of instrumentation that would have other­ wise been used to monitor and control the emergency. The ugly aftermath included high radiation exposure to operators at the nuclear power plants and early contamina­tion of food supplies and water within several restricted areas in Japan, where high radiation levels have rendered them un­safe for human habitation. While the rest of the story will remain a tragic history, it is this part of the series of unfortunate events that has inspired our research. It has indubitably highlighted the need for a novel sensor and instrumentation system that can withstand similar or worse conditions to avoid future catastrophe and assume damage

  15. BN-800 advanced nuclear power plant with fast reactor

    SciTech Connect

    Shishkin, A.N.; Kuzavkov, N.G.; Sobolev, V.A.; Shestakov, G.V.; Bagdasarov, Yu.E.; Kochetkov, L.A.; Matveyev, V.I.; Poplavsky, V.M.

    1993-12-31

    Bn-800 reactor plant with fast reactor and sodium coolant in the primary and secondary circuits is designed for operation as part of the power units in the Yuzhno-Uralskaya nuclear power plant scheduled to be constructed in Chelyabinsk region and as part unit 4 in the Beloyarskaya nuclear power plant. Reactor operations are described.

  16. Critical temperature for the nuclear liquid-gas phase transition (from multifragmentation and fission)

    SciTech Connect

    Karnaukhov, V. A.; Oeschler, H.; Budzanowski, A.; Avdeyev, S. P.; Botvina, A. S.; Cherepanov, E. A.; Karcz, W.; Kirakosyan, V. V.; Rukoyatkin, P. A.; Skwirczynska, I.; Norbeck, E.

    2008-12-15

    Critical temperature T{sub c} for the nuclear liquid-gas phase transition is estimated from both the multifragmentation and fission data. In the first case, the critical temperature is obtained by analysis of the intermediate-mass-fragment yields in p(8.1 GeV) + Au collisions within the statistical model of multifragmentation. In the second case, the experimental fission probability for excited {sup 188}Os is compared with the calculated one with T{sub c} as a free parameter. It is concluded for both cases that the critical temperature is higher than 15 MeV.

  17. Interplay between compound and fragments aspects of nuclear fission and heavy-ion reaction

    SciTech Connect

    Moller, Peter; Iwamoto, A; Ichikawa, I

    2010-09-10

    The scission point in nuclear fission plays a special role where one-body system changes to two-body system. Inverse of this situation is realized in heavy-ion fusion reaction where two-body system changes to one body system. Among several peculiar phenomena expected to occur during this change, we focus our attention to the behavior of compound and fragments shell effects. Some aspects of the interplay between compound and fragments shell effect are discussed related to the topics of the fission valleys in the potential energy surface of actinide nuclei and the fusion-like trajectory found in the cold fusion reaction leading to superheavy nuclei.

  18. Designed porosity materials in nuclear reactor components

    DOEpatents

    Yacout, A. M.; Pellin, Michael J.; Stan, Marius

    2016-09-06

    A nuclear fuel pellet with a porous substrate, such as a carbon or tungsten aerogel, on which at least one layer of a fuel containing material is deposited via atomic layer deposition, and wherein the layer deposition is controlled to prevent agglomeration of defects. Further, a method of fabricating a nuclear fuel pellet, wherein the method features the steps of selecting a porous substrate, depositing at least one layer of a fuel containing material, and terminating the deposition when the desired porosity is achieved. Also provided is a nuclear reactor fuel cladding made of a porous substrate, such as silicon carbide aerogel or silicon carbide cloth, upon which layers of silicon carbide are deposited.

  19. Advanced nuclear reactor public opinion project

    SciTech Connect

    Benson, B.

    1991-07-25

    This Interim Report summarizes the findings of our first twenty in-depth interviews in the Advanced Nuclear Reactor Public Opinion Project. We interviewed 6 industry trade association officials, 3 industry attorneys, 6 environmentalists/nuclear critics, 3 state officials, and 3 independent analysts. In addition, we have had numerous shorter discussions with various individuals concerned about nuclear power. The report is organized into the four categories proposed at our April, 1991, Advisory Group meeting: safety, cost-benefit analysis, science education, and communications. Within each category, some change of focus from that of the Advisory Group has been required, to reflect the findings of our interviews. This report limits itself to describing our findings. An accompanying memo draws some tentative conclusions.

  20. MANTA. An Integral Reactor Physics Experiment to Infer the Neutron Capture Cross Sections of Actinides and Fission Products in Fast and Epithermal Spectra

    SciTech Connect

    Youinou, Gilles Jean-Michel

    2015-10-01

    Neutron cross-sections characterize the way neutrons interact with matter. They are essential to most nuclear engineering projects and, even though theoretical progress has been made as far as the predictability of neutron cross-section models, measurements are still indispensable to meet tight design requirements for reduced uncertainties. Within the field of fission reactor technology, one can identify the following specializations that rely on the availability of accurate neutron cross-sections: (1) fission reactor design, (2) nuclear fuel cycles, (3) nuclear safety, (4) nuclear safeguards, (5) reactor monitoring and neutron fluence determination and (6) waste disposal and transmutation. In particular, the assessment of advanced fuel cycles requires an extensive knowledge of transuranics cross sections. Plutonium isotopes, but also americium, curium and up to californium isotope data are required with a small uncertainty in order to optimize significant features of the fuel cycle that have an impact on feasibility studies (e.g. neutron doses at fuel fabrication, decay heat in a repository, etc.). Different techniques are available to determine neutron cross sections experimentally, with the common denominator that a source of neutrons is necessary. It can either come from an accelerator that produces neutrons as a result of interactions between charged particles and a target, or it can come from a nuclear reactor. When the measurements are performed with an accelerator, they are referred to as differential since the analysis of the data provides the cross-sections for different discrete energies, i.e. σ(Ei), and for the diffusion cross sections for different discrete angles. Another approach is to irradiate a very pure sample in a test reactor such as the Advanced Test Reactor (ATR) at INL and, after a given time, determine the amount of the different transmutation products. The precise characterization of the nuclide densities before and after

  1. REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Christy, R.F.

    1961-07-25

    A means is described for co-relating the essential physical requirements of a fission chain reaction in order that practical, compact, and easily controllable reactors can be built. These objects are obtained by employing a composition of fissionsble isotope and moderator in fluid form in which the amount of fissionsble isotcpe present governs the reaction. The size of the reactor is no longer a critical factor, the new criterion being the concentration of the fissionable isotope.

  2. A Methodology for the Neutronics Design of Space Nuclear Reactors

    SciTech Connect

    King, Jeffrey C.; El-Genk, Mohamed S.

    2004-02-04

    A methodology for the neutronics design of space power reactors is presented. This methodology involves balancing the competing requirements of having sufficient excess reactivity for the desired lifetime, keeping the reactor subcritical at launch and during submersion accidents, and providing sufficient control over the lifetime of the reactor. These requirements are addressed by three reactivity values for a given reactor design: the excess reactivity at beginning of mission, the negative reactivity at shutdown, and the negative reactivity margin in submersion accidents. These reactivity values define the control worth and the safety worth in submersion accidents, used for evaluating the merit of a proposed reactor type and design. The Heat Pipe-Segmented Thermoelectric Module Converters space reactor core design is evaluated and modified based on the proposed methodology. The final reactor core design has sufficient excess reactivity for 10 years of nominal operation at 1.82 MW of fission power and is subcritical at launch and in all water submersion accidents.

  3. Nuclear reactor pressure vessel support system

    DOEpatents

    Sepelak, George R.

    1978-01-01

    A support system for nuclear reactor pressure vessels which can withstand all possible combinations of stresses caused by a postulated core disrupting accident during reactor operation. The nuclear reactor pressure vessel is provided with a flange around the upper periphery thereof, and the flange includes an annular vertical extension formed integral therewith. A support ring is positioned atop of the support ledge and the flange vertical extension, and is bolted to both members. The plug riser is secured to the flange vertical extension and to the top of a radially outwardly extension of the rotatable plug. This system eliminates one joint through which fluids contained in the vessel could escape by making the fluid flow path through the joint between the flange and the support ring follow the same path through which fluid could escape through the plug risers. In this manner, the sealing means to prohibit the escape of contained fluids through the plug risers can also prohibit the escape of contained fluid through the securing joint.

  4. ENDF/B-VII.1 Nuclear Data for Science and Technology: Cross Sections, Covariances, Fission Product Yields and Decay Data

    SciTech Connect

    Chadwick, M. B.; Herman, Micheal W; Oblozinsky, Pavel; Dunn, Michael E; Danon, Y.; Kahler, A.; Smith, Donald L.; Pritychenko, B; Arbanas, Goran; Arcilla, r; Brewer, R; Brown, D A; Capote, R.; Carlson, A. D.; Cho, Y S; Derrien, Herve; Guber, Klaus H; Hale, G. M.; Hoblit, S; Holloway, Shannon T.; Johnson, T D; Kawano, T.; Kiedrowski, B C; Kim, H; Kunieda, S; Larson, Nancy M; Leal, Luiz C; Lestone, J P; Little, R C; Mccutchan, E A; Macfarlane, R E; MacInnes, M; Matton, C M; Mcknight, R D; Mughabghab, S F; Nobre, G P; Palmiotti, G; Palumbo, A; Pigni, Marco T; Pronyaev, V. G.; Sayer, Royce O; Sonzogni, A A; Summers, N C; Talou, P; Thompson, I J; Trkov, A.; Vogt, R L; Van der Marck, S S; Wallner, A; White, M C; Wiarda, Dorothea; Young, P C

    2011-01-01

    The ENDF/B-VII.1 library is our latest recommended evaluated nuclear data file for use in nuclear science and technology applications, and incorporates advances made in the five years since the release of ENDF/B-VII.0. These advances focus on neutron cross sections, covariances, fission product yields and decay data, and represent work by the US Cross Section Evaluation Working Group (CSEWG) in nuclear data evaluation that utilizes developments in nuclear theory, modeling, simulation, and experiment. The principal advances in the new library are: (1) An increase in the breadth of neutron reaction cross section coverage, extending from 393 nuclides to 423 nuclides; (2) Covariance uncertainty data for 190 of the most important nuclides, as documented in companion papers in this edition; (3) R-matrix analyses of neutron reactions on light nuclei, including isotopes of He; Li, and Be; (4) Resonance parameter analyses at lower energies and statistical high energy reactions for isotopes of Cl; K; Ti, V, Mn, Cr, Ni, Zr and W; (5) Modifications to thermal neutron reactions on fission products (isotopes of Mo, Tc, Rh, Ag, Cs, Nd, Sm, Eu) and neutron absorber materials (Cd, Gd); (6) Improved minor actinide evaluations for isotopes of U, Np, Pu, and Am (we are not making changes to the major actinides (235,238)U and (239)Pu at this point, except for delayed neutron data and covariances, and instead we intend to update them after a further period of research in experiment and theory), and our adoption of JENDL-4.0 evaluations for isotopes of Cm, Bk, Cf, Es; Fm; and some other minor actinides; (7) Fission energy release evaluations; (8) Fission product yield advances for fission-spectrum neutrons and 14 MeV neutrons incident on (239)Pu; and (9) A new decay data sublibrary. Integral validation testing of the ENDF/B-VII.1 library is provided for a variety of quantities: For nuclear criticality, the VII.1 library maintains the generally-good performance seen for VII.0 for a wide

  5. Accelerator-driven subcritical fission in molten salt core: Closing the nuclear fuel cycle for green nuclear energy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McIntyre, Peter; Assadi, Saeed; Badgley, Karie; Baker, William; Comeaux, Justin; Gerity, James; Kellams, Joshua; McInturff, Al; Pogue, Nathaniel; Phongikaroon, Supathorn; Sattarov, Akhdiyor; Simpson, Michael; Sooby, Elizabeth; Tsvetkov, Pavel

    2013-04-01

    A technology for accelerator-driven subcritical fission in a molten salt core (ADSMS) is being developed as a basis for the destruction of the transuranics in used nuclear fuel. The molten salt fuel is a eutectic mixture of NaCl and the chlorides of the transuranics and fission products. The core is driven by proton beams from a strong-focusing cyclotron stack. This approach uniquely provides an intrinsically safe means to drive a core fueled only with transuranics, thereby eliminating competing breeding terms.

  6. Accelerator-driven subcritical fission in molten salt core: Closing the nuclear fuel cycle for green nuclear energy

    SciTech Connect

    McIntyre, Peter; Assadi, Saeed; Badgley, Karie; Baker, William; Comeaux, Justin; Gerity, James; Kellams, Joshua; McInturff, Al; Pogue, Nathaniel; Sattarov, Akhdiyor; Sooby, Elizabeth; Tsvetkov, Pavel; Phongikaroon, Supathorn; Simpson, Michael

    2013-04-19

    A technology for accelerator-driven subcritical fission in a molten salt core (ADSMS) is being developed as a basis for the destruction of the transuranics in used nuclear fuel. The molten salt fuel is a eutectic mixture of NaCl and the chlorides of the transuranics and fission products. The core is driven by proton beams from a strong-focusing cyclotron stack. This approach uniquely provides an intrinsically safe means to drive a core fueled only with transuranics, thereby eliminating competing breeding terms.

  7. Graphite for the nuclear industry

    SciTech Connect

    Burchell, T.D.; Fuller, E.L.; Romanoski, G.R.; Strizak, J.P.

    1991-01-01

    Graphite finds applications in both fission and fusion reactors. Fission reactors harness the energy liberated when heavy elements, such as uranium or plutonium, fragment or fission''. Reactors of this type have existed for nearly 50 years. The first nuclear fission reactor, Chicago Pile No. 1, was constructed of graphite under a football stand at Stagg Field, University of Chicago. Fusion energy devices will produce power by utilizing the energy produced when isotopes of the element hydrogen are fused together to form helium, the same reaction that powers our sun. The role of graphite is very different in these two reactor systems. Here we summarize the function of the graphite in fission and fusion reactors, detailing the reasons for their selection and discussing some of the challenges associated with their application in nuclear fission and fusion reactors. 10 refs., 15 figs., 1 tab.

  8. The Search for Transuranium Elements and the Discovery of Nuclear Fission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sime, Ruth Lewin

    The synthesis of new, artificial elements beyond uranium was at the cutting-edge of physical research in the 1930s, and nearly half a dozen transuranium elements were reported between 1934 and 1938. Nuclear physicists and radiochemists collaborated closely, but each field introduced fundamental assumptions that proved to be false: that nuclear changes would always be small, and that transuranium elements would resemble transition elements chemically. With its surprise ending in the discovery of nuclear fission, the misguided transuranium project can be viewed as an example of the illogical progress of scientific discovery. It is also an example of an interdisciplinary collaboration that was flawed yet crucial, for although chemists and physicists both contributed to the delay in discovering fission, their collaboration was essential in leading them to it in the end.

  9. Space Molten Salt Reactor Concept for Nuclear Electric Propulsion and Surface Power

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eades, M.; Flanders, J.; McMurray, N.; Denning, R.; Sun, X.; Windl, W.; Blue, T.

    Students at The Ohio State University working under the NASA Steckler Grant sought to investigate how molten salt reactors with fissile material dissolved in a liquid fuel medium can be applied to space applications. Molten salt reactors of this kind, built for non-space applications, have demonstrated high power densities, high temperature operation without pressurization, high fuel burn up and other characteristics that are ideal for space fission systems. However, little research has been published on the application of molten salt reactor technology to space fission systems. This paper presents a conceptual design of the Space Molten Salt Reactor (SMSR), which utilizes molten salt reactor technology for Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP) and surface power at the 100 kWe to 15 MWe level. Central to the SMSR design is a liquid mixture of LiF, BeF2 and highly enriched U235F4 that acts as both fuel and core coolant. In brief, some of the positive characteristics of the SMSR are compact size, simplified core design, high fuel burn up percentages, proliferation resistant features, passive safety mechanisms, a considerable body of previous research, and the possibility for flexible mission architecture.

  10. Evaluation of fission product worth margins in PWR spent nuclear fuel burnup credit calculations.

    SciTech Connect

    Blomquist, R.N.; Finck, P.J.; Jammes, C.; Stenberg, C.G.

    1999-02-17

    Current criticality safety calculations for the transportation of irradiated LWR fuel make the very conservative assumption that the fuel is fresh. This results in a very substantial overprediction of the actual k{sub eff} of the transportation casks; in certain cases, this decreases the amount of spent fuel which can be loaded in a cask, and increases the cost of transporting the spent fuel to the repository. Accounting for the change of reactivity due to fuel depletion is usually referred to as ''burnup credit.'' The US DOE is currently funding a program aimed at establishing an actinide only burnup credit methodology (in this case, the calculated reactivity takes into account the buildup or depletion of a limited number of actinides). This work is undergoing NRC review. While this methodology is being validated on a significant experimental basis, it implicitly relies on additional margins: in particular, the absorption of neutrons by certain actinides and by all fission products is not taken into account. This provides an important additional margin and helps guarantee that the methodology is conservative provided these neglected absorption are known with reasonable accuracy. This report establishes the accuracy of fission product absorption rate calculations: (1) the analysis of European fission product worth experiments demonstrates that fission product cross-sections available in the US provide very good predictions of fission product worth; (2) this is confirmed by a direct comparison of European and US cross section evaluations; (3) accuracy of Spent Nuclear Fuel (SNF) fission product content predictions is established in a recent ORNL report where several SNF isotopic assays are analyzed; and (4) these data are then combined to establish in a conservative manner the fraction of the predicted total fission product absorption which can be guaranteed based on available experimental data.

  11. NEW EMPLOYEES ON THE JOB - DONALD E HEGBERG OF THE NUCLEAR REACTOR DIVISION DISCUSSES NUCLEAR ROCKET

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1963-01-01

    NEW EMPLOYEES ON THE JOB - DONALD E HEGBERG OF THE NUCLEAR REACTOR DIVISION DISCUSSES NUCLEAR ROCKET FUEL ELEMENT EXPERIMENT WITH CHARLES L YOUNGER - THE DISCUSSION IS PREPATORY TO CONDUCTING THE EXPERIMENT AT THE PLUM BROOK STATION REACTOR FACILITY

  12. Nuclear reactor insulation and preheat system

    DOEpatents

    Wampole, Nevin C.

    1978-01-01

    An insulation and preheat system for preselected components of a fluid cooled nuclear reactor. A gas tight barrier or compartment of thermal insulation surrounds the selected components and includes devices to heat the internal atmosphere of the compartment. An external surface of the compartment or enclosure is cooled, such as by a circulating fluid. The heating devices provide for preheating of the components, as well as maintenance of a temperature sufficient to ensure that the reactor coolant fluid will not solidify during shutdown. The external cooling limits the heat transferred to other plant structures, such as supporting concrete and steel. The barrier is spaced far enough from the surrounded components so as to allow access for remote or manual inspection, maintenance, and repair.

  13. Closure head for a nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Wade, Elman E.

    1980-01-01

    A closure head for a nuclear reactor includes a stationary outer ring integral with the reactor vessel with a first rotatable plug disposed within the stationary outer ring and supported from the stationary outer ring by a bearing assembly. A sealing system is associated with the bearing assembly to seal the annulus defined between the first rotatable plug and the stationary outer ring. The sealing system comprises tubular seal elements disposed in the annulus with load springs contacting the tubular seal elements so as to force the tubular seal elements against the annulus in a manner to seal the annulus. The sealing system also comprises a sealing fluid which is pumped through the annulus and over the tubular seal elements causing the load springs to compress thereby reducing the friction between the tubular seal elements and the rotatable components while maintaining a gas-tight seal therebetween.

  14. Eugene Wigner, The First Nuclear Reactor Engineer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weinberg, Alvin M.

    2002-04-01

    All physicists recognize Eugene Wigner as a theoretical physicist of the very first rank. Yet Wigner's only advanced degree was in Chemical Engineering. His physics was largely self-taught. During WWII, Wigner brilliantly returned to his original occupation as an engineer. He led the small team of theoretical physicists and engineers who designed, in remarkable detail, the original graphite-moderated, water-cooled Hanford reactor, which produced the Pu239 of the Trinity and Nagasaki bombs. With his unparalleled understanding of chain reactors (matched only by Fermi) and his skill and liking for engineering, Wigner can properly be called the Founder of Nuclear Engineering. The evidence for this is demonstrated by a summary of his 37 Patents on various chain reacting systems.

  15. MEANS FOR CONTROLLING A NUCLEAR REACTOR

    DOEpatents

    Wilson, V.C.; Overbeck, W.P.; Slotin, L.; Froman, D.K.

    1957-12-17

    This patent relates to nuclear reactors of the type using a solid neutron absorbing material as a means for controlling the reproduction ratio of the system and thereby the power output. Elongated rods of neutron absorbing material, such as boron steel for example, are adapted to be inserted and removed from the core of tae reactor by electronic motors and suitable drive means. The motors and drive means are controlled by means responsive to the neutron density, such as ionization chambers. The control system is designed to be responsive also to the rate of change in neutron density to automatically maintain the total power output at a substantially constant predetermined value. A safety rod means responsive to neutron density is also provided for keeping the power output below a predetermined maximum value at all times.

  16. Nuclear reactor flow control method and apparatus

    DOEpatents

    Church, John P.

    1993-01-01

    Method and apparatus for improving coolant flow in a nuclear reactor during accident as well as nominal conditions. The reactor has a plurality of fuel elements in sleeves and a plenum above the fuel and through which the sleeves penetrate. Holes are provided in the sleeve so that coolant from the plenum can enter the sleeve and cool the fuel. The number and size of the holes are varied from sleeve to sleeve with the number and size of holes being greater for sleeves toward the center of the core and less for sleeves toward the periphery of the core. Preferably the holes are all the same diameter and arranged in rows and columns, the rows starting from the bottom of every sleeve and fewer rows in peripheral sleeves and more rows in the central sleeves.

  17. Nuclear reactor flow control method and apparatus

    DOEpatents

    Church, J.P.

    1993-03-30

    Method and apparatus for improving coolant flow in a nuclear reactor during accident as well as nominal conditions. The reactor has a plurality of fuel elements in sleeves and a plenum above the fuel and through which the sleeves penetrate. Holes are provided in the sleeve so that coolant from the plenum can enter the sleeve and cool the fuel. The number and size of the holes are varied from sleeve to sleeve with the number and size of holes being greater for sleeves toward the center of the core and less for sleeves toward the periphery of the core. Preferably the holes are all the same diameter and arranged in rows and columns, the rows starting from the bottom of every sleeve and fewer rows in peripheral sleeves and more rows in the central sleeves.

  18. Detecting special nuclear materials in suspect containers using high-energy gamma rays emitted by fission products

    DOEpatents

    Norman, Eric B [Oakland, CA; Prussin, Stanley G [Kensington, CA

    2009-05-05

    A method and a system for detecting the presence of special nuclear materials in a suspect container. The system and its method include irradiating the suspect container with a beam of neutrons, so as to induce a thermal fission in a portion of the special nuclear materials, detecting the gamma rays that are emitted from the fission products formed by the thermal fission, to produce a detector signal, comparing the detector signal with a threshold value to form a comparison, and detecting the presence of the special nuclear materials using the comparison.

  19. Detecting special nuclear materials in suspect containers using high-energy gamma rays emitted by fission products

    DOEpatents

    Norman, Eric B.; Prussin, Stanley G.

    2009-01-06

    A method and a system for detecting the presence of special nuclear materials in a suspect container. The system and its method include irradiating the suspect container with a beam of neutrons, so as to induce a thermal fission in a portion of the special nuclear materials, detecting the gamma rays that are emitted from the fission products formed by the thermal fission, to produce a detector signal, comparing the detector signal with a threshold value to form a comparison, and detecting the presence of the special nuclear materials using the comparison.

  20. Detecting special nuclear materials in suspect containers using high-energy gamma rays emitted by fission products

    DOEpatents

    Norman, Eric B.; Prussin, Stanley G.

    2009-01-27

    A method and a system for detecting the presence of special nuclear materials in a suspect container. The system and its method include irradiating the suspect container with a beam of neutrons, so as to induce a thermal fission in a portion of the special nuclear materials, detecting the gamma rays that are emitted from the fission products formed by the thermal fission, to produce a detector signal, comparing the detector signal with a threshold value to form a comparison, and detecting the presence of the special nuclear materials using the comparison.

  1. REACTOR PHYSICS MODELING OF SPENT NUCLEAR RESEARCH REACTOR FUEL FOR SNM ATTRIBUTION AND NUCLEAR FORENSICS

    SciTech Connect

    Sternat, M.; Beals, D.; Webb, R.; Nichols, T.

    2010-06-09

    Nuclear research reactors are the least safeguarded type of reactor; in some cases this may be attributed to low risk and in most cases it is due to difficulty from dynamic operation. Research reactors vary greatly in size, fuel type, enrichment, power and burnup providing a significant challenge to any standardized safeguard system. If a whole fuel assembly was interdicted, based on geometry and other traditional forensics work, one could identify the material's origin fairly accurately. If the material has been dispersed or reprocessed, in-depth reactor physics models may be used to help with the identification. Should there be a need to attribute research reactor fuel material, the Savannah River National Laboratory would perform radiochemical analysis of samples of the material as well as other non-destructive measurements. In depth reactor physics modeling would then be performed to compare to these measured results in an attempt to associate the measured results with various reactor parameters. Several reactor physics codes are being used and considered for this purpose, including: MONTEBURNS/ORIGEN/MCNP5, CINDER/MCNPX and WIMS. In attempt to identify reactor characteristics, such as time since shutdown, burnup, or power, various isotopes are used. Complexities arise when the inherent assumptions embedded in different reactor physics codes handle the isotopes differently and may quantify them to different levels of accuracy. A technical approach to modeling spent research reactor fuel begins at the assembly level upon acquiring detailed information of the reactor to be modeled. A single assembly is run using periodic boundary conditions to simulate an infinite lattice which may be repeatedly burned to produce input fuel isotopic vectors of various burnups for a core level model. A core level model will then be constructed using the assembly level results as inputs for the specific fuel shuffling pattern in an attempt to establish an equilibrium cycle. The

  2. Overview of beneficial uses of nuclear fission products

    SciTech Connect

    Sivinski, J.S.

    1980-01-01

    Recoverable or reprocessed nuclear wastes as conservable resources with significant potential benefits for use as heat sources, or as radiation sources for industrial, agricultural, and medical applications are reviewed. (LCL)

  3. Fission fragment charge and mass distributions in 239Pu(n, f ) in the adiabatic nuclear energy density functional theory

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Regnier, D.; Dubray, N.; Schunck, N.; Verriere, M.

    2016-05-13

    Here, accurate knowledge of fission fragment yields is an essential ingredient of numerous applications ranging from the formation of elements in the r process to fuel cycle optimization for nuclear energy. The need for a predictive theory applicable where no data are available, together with the variety of potential applications, is an incentive to develop a fully microscopic approach to fission dynamics.

  4. Nuclear fission fragment excitation of electronic transition laser media

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lorents, D. C.; Mccusker, M. V.; Rhodes, C. K.

    1976-01-01

    Specific characteristics of the media including density, excitation rates, wavelength, kinetics, fissile material, scale size, and medium uniformity are assessed. The use of epithermal neutrons, homogeneously mixed fissile material, and special high cross section nuclear isotopes to optimize coupling of the energy to the medium are shown to be important considerations maximizing the scale size, energy deposition, and medium uniformity. It is demonstrated that e-beam excitation can be used to simulate nuclear pumping conditions to facilitate the search for candidate media.

  5. System and method for the analysis of one or more compounds and/or species produced by a solution-based nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Policke, Timothy A; Nygaard, Eric T

    2014-05-06

    The present invention relates generally to both a system and method for determining the composition of an off-gas from a solution nuclear reactor (e.g., an Aqueous Homogeneous Reactor (AHR)) and the composition of the fissioning solution from those measurements. In one embodiment, the present invention utilizes at least one quadrupole mass spectrometer (QMS) in a system and/or method designed to determine at least one or more of: (i) the rate of production of at least one gas and/or gas species from a nuclear reactor; (ii) the effect on pH by one or more nitrogen species; (iii) the rate of production of one or more fission gases; and/or (iv) the effect on pH of at least one gas and/or gas species other than one or more nitrogen species from a nuclear reactor.

  6. Organic free radicals and micropores in solid graphitic carbonaceous matter at the Oklo natural fission reactors, Gabon

    SciTech Connect

    Rigali, M.J.; Nagy, B.

    1997-01-01

    The presence, concentration, and distribution of organic free radicals as well as their association with specific surface areas and microporosities help characterize the evolution and behavior of the Oklo carbonaceous matter. Such information is necessary in order to evaluate uranium mineralization, liquid bitumen solidification, and radio nuclide containment at Oklo. In the Oklo ore deposits and natural fission reactors carbonaceous matter is often referred to as solid graphitic bitumen. The carbonaceous parts of the natural reactors may contain as much as 65.9% organic C by weight in heterogeneous distribution within the clay-rich matrix. The solid carbonaceous matter immobilized small uraninite crystals and some fission products enclosed in this uraninite and thereby facilitated radio nuclide containment in the reactors. Hence, the Oklo natural fission reactors are currently the subjects of detailed studies because they may be useful analogues to support performance assessment of radio nuclide containment at anthropogenic radioactive waste repository sites. Seven carbonaceous matter rich samples from the 1968 {+-} 50 Ma old natural fission reactors and the associated Oklo uranium ore deposit were studied by electron spin resonance (ESR) spectroscopy and by measurements of specific surface areas (BET method). Humic acid, fulvic acid, and fully crystalline graphite standards were also examined by ESR spectroscopy for comparison with the Oklo solid graphitic bitumens. With one exception, the ancient Oklo bitumens have higher organic free radical concentrations than the modem humic and fulvic acid samples. The presence of carbon free radicals in the graphite standard could not be determined due to the conductivity of this material. 72 refs., 7 figs., 1 tab.

  7. Cladding and Duct Materials for Advanced Nuclear Recycle Reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Allen, Todd R.; Busby, Jeremy T; Klueh, Ronald L; Maloy, S; Toloczko, M

    2008-01-01

    The expanded use of nuclear energy without risk of nuclear weapons proliferation and with safe nuclear waste disposal is a primary goal of the Global Nuclear Energy Partnership (GNEP). To achieve that goal the GNEP is exploring advanced technologies for recycling spent nuclear fuel that do not separate pure plutonium, and advanced reactors that consume transuranic elements from recycled spent fuel. The GNEP s objectives will place high demands on reactor clad and structural materials. This article discusses the materials requirements of the GNEP s advanced nuclear recycle reactors program.

  8. Neutronics of accelerator-driven subcritical fission for burning transuranics in used nuclear fuel

    SciTech Connect

    Sattarov, A.; Assadi, S.; Badgley, K.; Baty, A.; Comeaux, J.; Gerity, J.; Kellams, J.; Mcintyre, P.; Pogue, N.; Sooby, E.; Tsvetkov, P.; Rosaire, G.; Mann, T.

    2013-04-19

    We report the development of a conceptual design for accelerator-driven subcritical fission in a molten salt core (ADSMS). ADSMS is capable of destroying all of the transuranics at the same rate and proportion as they are produced in a conventional nuclear power plant. The ADSMS core is fueled solely by transuranics extracted from used nuclear fuel and reduces its radiotoxicity by a factor 10,000. ADSMS offers a way to close the nuclear fuel cycle so that the full energy potential in the fertile fuels uranium and thorium can be recovered.

  9. Neutronics of accelerator-driven subcritical fission for burning transuranics in used nuclear fuel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sattarov, A.; Assadi, S.; Badgley, K.; Baty, A.; Comeaux, J.; Gerity, J.; Kellams, J.; Mcintyre, P.; Pogue, N.; Sooby, E.; Tsvetkov, P.; Rosaire, G.; Mann, T.

    2013-04-01

    We report the development of a conceptual design for accelerator-driven subcritical fission in a molten salt core (ADSMS). ADSMS is capable of destroying all of the transuranics at the same rate and proportion as they are produced in a conventional nuclear power plant. The ADSMS core is fueled solely by transuranics extracted from used nuclear fuel and reduces its radiotoxicity by a factor 10,000. ADSMS offers a way to close the nuclear fuel cycle so that the full energy potential in the fertile fuels uranium and thorium can be recovered.

  10. Nuclear reactor fuel rod attachment system

    DOEpatents

    Not Available

    1980-09-17

    A reusable system is described for removably attaching a nuclear reactor fuel rod to a support member. A locking cap is secured to the fuel rod and a locking strip is fastened to the support member. The locking cap has two opposing fingers shaped to form a socket having a body portion. The locking strip has an extension shaped to rigidly attach to the socket's body portion. The locking cap's fingers are resiliently deflectable. For attachment, the locking cap is longitudinally pushed onto the locking strip causing the extension to temporarily deflect open the fingers to engage the socket's body portion. For removal, the process is reversed.

  11. Measuring Neutrino Oscillations with Nuclear Reactors

    SciTech Connect

    McKeown, R. D.

    2007-10-26

    Since the first direct observations of antineutrino events by Reines and Cowan in the 1950's, nuclear reactors have been an important tool in the study of neutrino properties. More recently, the study of neutrino oscillations has been a very active area of research. The pioneering observation of oscillations by the KamLAND experiment has provided crucial information on the neutrino mixing matrix. New experiments to study the remaining unknown mixing angle are currently under development. These recent studies and potential future developments will be discussed.

  12. Liquid metal pump for nuclear reactors

    DOEpatents

    Allen, H.G.; Maloney, J.R.

    1975-10-01

    A pump for use in pumping high temperature liquids at high pressures, particularly liquid metals used to cool nuclear reactors is described. It is of the type in which the rotor is submerged in a sump but is fed by an inlet duct which bypasses the sump. A chamber, kept full of fluid, surrounds the pump casing into which fluid is bled from the pump discharge and from which fluid is fed to the rotor bearings and hence to the sump. This equalizes pressure inside and outside the pump casing and reduces or eliminates the thermal shock to the bearings and sump tank.

  13. A compact breed and burn fast reactor using spent nuclear fuel blanket

    SciTech Connect

    Hartanto, D.; Kim, Y.

    2012-07-01

    A long-life breed-and-burn (B and B) type fast reactor has been investigated from the neutronics points of view. The B and B reactor has the capability to breed the fissile fuels and use the bred fuel in situ in the same reactor. In this work, feasibility of a compact sodium-cooled B and B fast reactor using spent nuclear fuel as blanket material has been studied. In order to derive a compact B and B fast reactor, a tight fuel lattice and relatively large fuel pin are used to achieve high fuel volume fraction. The core is initially loaded with an LEU (Low Enriched Uranium) fuel and a metallic fuel is used in the core. The Monte Carlo depletion has been performed for the core to see the long-term behavior of the B and B reactor. Several important parameters such as reactivity coefficients, delayed neutron fraction, prompt neutron generation lifetime, fission power, and fast neutron fluence, are analyzed through Monte Carlo reactor analysis. Evolution of the core fuel composition is also analyzed as a function of burnup. Although the long-life small B and B fast reactor is found to be feasible from the neutronics point of view, it is characterized to have several challenging technical issues including a very high fast neutron fluence of the structural materials. (authors)

  14. Theoretical Description of the Fission Process

    SciTech Connect

    Witold Nazarewicz

    2009-10-25

    Advanced theoretical methods and high-performance computers may finally unlock the secrets of nuclear fission, a fundamental nuclear decay that is of great relevance to society. In this work, we studied the phenomenon of spontaneous fission using the symmetry-unrestricted nuclear density functional theory (DFT). Our results show that many observed properties of fissioning nuclei can be explained in terms of pathways in multidimensional collective space corresponding to different geometries of fission products. From the calculated collective potential and collective mass, we estimated spontaneous fission half-lives, and good agreement with experimental data was found. We also predicted a new phenomenon of trimodal spontaneous fission for some transfermium isotopes. Our calculations demonstrate that fission barriers of excited superheavy nuclei vary rapidly with particle number, pointing to the importance of shell effects even at large excitation energies. The results are consistent with recent experiments where superheavy elements were created by bombarding an actinide target with 48-calcium; yet even at high excitation energies, sizable fission barriers remained. Not only does this reveal clues about the conditions for creating new elements, it also provides a wider context for understanding other types of fission. Understanding of the fission process is crucial for many areas of science and technology. Fission governs existence of many transuranium elements, including the predicted long-lived superheavy species. In nuclear astrophysics, fission influences the formation of heavy elements on the final stages of the r-process in a very high neutron density environment. Fission applications are numerous. Improved understanding of the fission process will enable scientists to enhance the safety and reliability of the nation’s nuclear stockpile and nuclear reactors. The deployment of a fleet of safe and efficient advanced reactors, which will also minimize radiotoxic

  15. Insights on fission products behaviour in nuclear severe accident conditions by X-ray absorption spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geiger, E.; Bès, R.; Martin, Ph; Pontillon, Y.; Ducros, G.; Solari, P. L.

    2016-04-01

    Many research programs have been carried out aiming to understand the fission products behaviour during a Nuclear Severe Accident. Most of these programs used highly radioactive irradiated nuclear fuel, which requires complex instrumentation. Moreover, the radioactive character of samples hinders an accurate chemical characterisation. In order to overcome these difficulties, SIMFUEL stand out as an alternative to perform complementary tests. A sample made of UO2 doped with 11 fission products was submitted to an annealing test up to 1973 K in reducing atmosphere. The sample was characterized before and after the annealing test using SEM-EDS and XAS at the MARS beam-line, SOLEIL Synchrotron. It was found that the overall behaviour of several fission products (such as Mo, Ba, Pd and Ru) was similar to that observed experimentally in irradiated fuels and consistent with thermodynamic estimations. The experimental approach presented in this work has allowed obtaining information on chemical phases evolution under nuclear severe accident conditions, that are yet difficult to obtain using irradiated nuclear fuel samples.

  16. Insights on fission products behaviour in nuclear severe accident conditions by X-ray absorption spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geiger, E.; Bès, R.; Martin, Ph; Pontillon, Y.; Ducros, G.; Solari, P. L.

    2016-04-01

    Many research programs have been carried out aiming to understand the fission products behaviour during a Nuclear Severe Accident. Most of these programs used highly radioactive irradiated nuclear fuel, which requires complex instrumentation. Moreover, the radioactive character of samples hinders an accurate chemical characterisation. In order to overcome these difficulties, SIMFUEL stand out as an alternative to perform complementary tests. A sample made of UO2 doped with 11 fission products was submitted to an annealing test up to 1973 K in reducing atmosphere. The sample was characterized before and after the annealing test using SEM-EDS and XAS at the MARS beam-line, SOLEIL Synchrotron. It was found that the overall behaviour of several fission products (such as Mo, Ba, Pd and Ru) was similar to that observed experimentally in irradiated fuels and consistent with thermodynamic estimations. The experimental approach presented in this work has allowed obtaining information on chemical phases evolution under nuclear severe accident conditions, that are yet difficult to obtain using irradiated nuclear fuel samples.

  17. The nuclear reactor strategy between fast breeder reactors and advanced pressurized water reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Seifritz, W.

    1983-11-01

    A nuclear reactor strategy between fast breeder reactors (FBRs) and advanced pressurized water reactors (APWRs) is being studied. The principal idea of this strategy is that the discharged plutonium from light water reactors (LWRs) provides the inventories of the FBRs and the high-converter APWRs, whereby the LWRs are installed according to the derivative of a logistical S curve. Special emphasis is given to the dynamics of reaching an asymptotic symbiosis between FBRs and APWRs. The main conclusion is that if a symbiotic APWR-FBR family with an asymptotic total power level in the terawatt range is to exist in about half a century from now, we need a large number of FBRs already in an early phase.

  18. Fluid sampling system for a nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Lau, L.K.; Alper, N.I.

    1994-11-22

    A system of extracting fluid samples, either liquid or gas, from the interior of a nuclear reactor containment utilizes a jet pump. To extract the sample fluid, a nonradioactive motive fluid is forced through the inlet and discharge ports of a jet pump located outside the containment, creating a suction that draws the sample fluid from the containment through a sample conduit connected to the pump suction port. The mixture of motive fluid and sample fluid is discharged through a return conduit to the interior of the containment. The jet pump and means for removing a portion of the sample fluid from the sample conduit can be located in a shielded sample grab station located next to the containment. A non-nuclear grade active pump can be located outside the grab sampling station and the containment to pump the nonradioactive motive fluid through the jet pump. 1 fig.

  19. Fluid sampling system for a nuclear reactor

    DOEpatents

    Lau, Louis K.; Alper, Naum I.

    1994-01-01

    A system of extracting fluid samples, either liquid or gas, from the interior of a nuclear reactor containment utilizes a jet pump. To extract the sample fluid, a nonradioactive motive fluid is forced through the inlet and discharge ports of a jet pump located outside the containment, creating a suction that draws the sample fluid from the containment through a sample conduit connected to the pump suction port. The mixture of motive fluid and sample fluid is discharged through a return conduit to the interior of the containment. The jet pump and means for removing a portion of the sample fluid from the sample conduit can be located in a shielded sample grab station located next to the containment. A non-nuclear grade active pump can be located outside the grab sampling station and the containment to pump the nonradioactive motive fluid through the jet pump.

  20. Analysis of nuclear reactor instability phenomena

    SciTech Connect

    Lahey, R.T. Jr.

    1993-01-01

    The phenomena known as density-wave instability often occurs in phase change systems, such as boiling water nuclear reactors (BWRS). Our current understanding of density-wave oscillations is in fairly good shape for linear phenomena (eg, the onset of instabilities) but is not very advanced for non-linear phenomena [Lahey and Podowski, 1989]. In particular, limit cycle and chaotic instability modes are not well understood in boiling systems such as current and advanced generation BWRs (eg, SBWR). In particular, the SBWR relies on natural circulation and is thus inherently prone to problems with density-wave instabilities. The purpose of this research is to develop a quantitative understanding of nonlinear nuclear-coupled density-wave instability phenomena in BWRS. This research builds on the work of Achard et al [1985] and Clausse et al [1991] who showed, respectively, that Hopf bifurcations and chaotic oscillations may occur in boiling systems.

  1. Multidimensionally constrained relativistic Hartree-Bogoliubov study of spontaneous nuclear fission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Jie; Lu, Bing-Nan; Nikšić, Tamara; Vretenar, Dario

    2015-12-01

    Background: Recent microscopic studies, based on the theoretical framework of nuclear energy density functionals, have analyzed dynamic (least action) and static (minimum energy) fission paths, and it has been shown that in addition to the important role played by nonaxial and/or octupole collective degrees of freedom, fission paths crucially depend on the approximations adopted in calculating the collective inertia. Purpose: To analyze effects of triaxial and octupole deformations, as well as approximations to the collective inertia, on the symmetric and asymmetric spontaneous fission dynamics, and compare with results of recent studies based on the self-consistent Hartree-Fock-Bogoliubov (HFB) method. Methods: Deformation energy surfaces, collective potentials, and perturbative and nonperturbative cranking collective inertia tensors are calculated using the multidimensionally-constrained relativistic Hartree-Bogoliubov (MDC-RHB) model, with the energy density functionals PC-PK1 and DD-PC1. Pairing correlations are treated in the Bogoliubov approximation using a separable pairing force of finite range. The least-action principle is employed to determine dynamic spontaneous fission paths. Results: The dynamics of spontaneous fission of 264Fm and 250Fm is explored. The fission paths, action integrals, and the corresponding half-lives predicted by the functionals PC-PK1 and DD-PC1 are compared and, in the case of 264Fm, discussed in relation with recent results obtained using the HFB model based on the Skyrme functional SkM* and a density dependent mixed pairing interaction. Conclusions: The inclusion of nonaxial quadrupole and octupole shape degrees of freedom is essential for a quantitative analysis of fission dynamics. The action integrals and, consequently, the half-lives crucially depend on the approximation used to calculate the effective collective inertia along the fission path. The perturbative cranking approach underestimates the effects of structural

  2. Request for Naval Reactors Comment on Proposed Prometheus Space Flight Nuclear Reactor High Tier Reactor Safety Requirements and for Naval Reactors Approval to Transmit These Requirements to JPL

    SciTech Connect

    D. Kokkinos

    2005-04-28

    The purpose of this letter is to request Naval Reactors comments on the nuclear reactor high tier requirements for the PROMETHEUS space flight reactor design, pre-launch operations, launch, ascent, operation, and disposal, and to request Naval Reactors approval to transmit these requirements to Jet Propulsion Laboratory to ensure consistency between the reactor safety requirements and the spacecraft safety requirements. The proposed PROMETHEUS nuclear reactor high tier safety requirements are consistent with the long standing safety culture of the Naval Reactors Program and its commitment to protecting the health and safety of the public and the environment. In addition, the philosophy on which these requirements are based is consistent with the Nuclear Safety Policy Working Group recommendations on space nuclear propulsion safety (Reference 1), DOE Nuclear Safety Criteria and Specifications for Space Nuclear Reactors (Reference 2), the Nuclear Space Power Safety and Facility Guidelines Study of the Applied Physics Laboratory.

  3. The Next Generation Nuclear Plant/Advanced Gas Reactor Fuel Irradiation Experiments in the Advanced Test Reactor

    SciTech Connect

    S. Blaine Grover

    2009-09-01

    The United States Department of Energy’s Next Generation Nuclear Plant (NGNP) Program will be irradiating eight separate low enriched uranium (LEU) tri-isotopic (TRISO) particle fuel (in compact form) experiments in the Advanced Test Reactor (ATR) located at the Idaho National Laboratory (INL). The ATR has a long history of irradiation testing in support of reactor development and the INL has been designated as the new United States Department of Energy’s lead laboratory for nuclear energy development. The ATR is one of the world’s premiere test reactors for performing long term, high flux, and/or large volume irradiation test programs. These irradiations and fuel development are being accomplished to support development of the next generation reactors in the United States, and will be irradiated over the next ten years to demonstrate and qualify new particle fuel for use in high temperature gas reactors. The goals of the irradiation experiments are to provide irradiation performance data to support fuel process development, to qualify fuel for normal operating conditions, to support development and validation of fuel performance and fission product transport models and codes, and to provide irradiated fuel and materials for post irradiation examination (PIE) and safety testing. The experiments, which will each consist of at least six separate capsules, will be irradiated in an inert sweep gas atmosphere with individual on-line temperature monitoring and control of each capsule. The sweep gas will also have on-line fission product monitoring on its effluent to track performance of the fuel in each individual capsule during irradiation. The first experiment (designated AGR-1) started irradiation in December 2006, and the second experiment (AGR-2) is currently in the design phase. The design of test trains, as well as the support systems and fission product monitoring system that will monitor and control the experiment during irradiation will be discussed. In

  4. A prototype experiment for cooperative monitoring of nuclear reactors with cubic meter scale antineutrino detectors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bernstein, A.; Allen, M.; Bowden, N.; Brennan, J.; Carr, D. J.; Estrada, J.; Hagmann, C.; Lund, J. C.; Madden, N. W.; Winant, C. D.

    2005-09-01

    Our Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory/Sandia National Laboratories collaboration has deployed a cubic-meter-scale antineutrino detector to demonstrate non-intrusive and automatic monitoring of the power levels and plutonium content of a nuclear reactor. Reactor monitoring of this kind is required for all non-nuclear weapons states under the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT), and is implemented by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Since the antineutrino count rate and energy spectrum depend on the relative yields of fissioning isotopes in the reactor core, changes in isotopic composition can be observed without ever directly accessing the core. Data from a cubic meter scale antineutrino detector, coupled with the well-understood principles that govern the core's evolution in time, can be used to determine whether the reactor is being operated in an illegitimate way. Our group has deployed a detector at the San Onofre reactor site in California to demonstrate this concept. This paper describes the concept and shows preliminary results from 8 months of operation.

  5. Neutron transport analysis for nuclear reactor design

    DOEpatents

    Vujic, J.L.

    1993-11-30

    Replacing regular mesh-dependent ray tracing modules in a collision/transfer probability (CTP) code with a ray tracing module based upon combinatorial geometry of a modified geometrical module (GMC) provides a general geometry transfer theory code in two dimensions (2D) for analyzing nuclear reactor design and control. The primary modification of the GMC module involves generation of a fixed inner frame and a rotating outer frame, where the inner frame contains all reactor regions of interest, e.g., part of a reactor assembly, an assembly, or several assemblies, and the outer frame, with a set of parallel equidistant rays (lines) attached to it, rotates around the inner frame. The modified GMC module allows for determining for each parallel ray (line), the intersections with zone boundaries, the path length between the intersections, the total number of zones on a track, the zone and medium numbers, and the intersections with the outer surface, which parameters may be used in the CTP code to calculate collision/transfer probability and cross-section values. 28 figures.

  6. Neutron transport analysis for nuclear reactor design

    DOEpatents

    Vujic, Jasmina L.

    1993-01-01

    Replacing regular mesh-dependent ray tracing modules in a collision/transfer probability (CTP) code with a ray tracing module based upon combinatorial geometry of a modified geometrical module (GMC) provides a general geometry transfer theory code in two dimensions (2D) for analyzing nuclear reactor design and control. The primary modification of the GMC module involves generation of a fixed inner frame and a rotating outer frame, where the inner frame contains all reactor regions of interest, e.g., part of a reactor assembly, an assembly, or several assemblies, and the outer frame, with a set of parallel equidistant rays (lines) attached to it, rotates around the inner frame. The modified GMC module allows for determining for each parallel ray (line), the intersections with zone boundaries, the path length between the intersections, the total number of zones on a track, the zone and medium numbers, and the intersections with the outer surface, which parameters may be used in the CTP code to calculate collision/transfer probability and cross-section values.

  7. Electrochemistry of Water-Cooled Nuclear Reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Macdonald, Dgiby; Urquidi-Macdonald, Mirna; Pitt, Jonathan

    2006-08-08

    This project developed a comprehensive mathematical and simulation model for calculating thermal hydraulic, electrochemical, and corrosion parameters, viz. temperature, fluid flow velocity, pH, corrosion potential, hydrogen injection, oxygen contamination, stress corrosion cracking, crack growth rate, and other important quantities in the coolant circuits of water-cooled nuclear power plants, including both Boiling Water Reactors (BWRs) and Pressurized Water Reactors (PWRs). The model is being used to assess the three major operational problems in Pressurized Water Reactors (PWR), which include mass transport, activity transport, and the axial offset anomaly, and provide a powerful tool for predicting the accumulation of SCC damage in BWR primary coolant circuits as a function of operating history. Another achievement of the project is the development of a simulation tool to serve both as a training tool for plant operators and as an engineering test-bed to evaluate new equipment and operating strategies (normal operation, cold shut down and others). The development and implementation of the model allows us to estimate the activity transport or "radiation fields" around the primary loop and the vessel, as a function of the operating parameters and the water chemistry.

  8. Laboratory instrumentation modernization at the WPI Nuclear Reactor Facility

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1995-01-01

    With partial funding from the Department of Energy (DOE) University Reactor Instrumentation Program several laboratory instruments utilized by students and researchers at the WPI Nuclear Reactor Facility have been upgraded or replaced. Designed and built by General Electric in 1959, the open pool nuclear training reactor at WPI was one of the first such facilities in the nation located on a university campus. Devoted to undergraduate use, the reactor and its related facilities have been since used to train two generations of nuclear engineers and scientists for the nuclear industry. The low power output of the reactor and an ergonomic facility design make it an ideal tool for undergraduate nuclear engineering education and other training. The reactor, its control system, and the associate laboratory equipment are all located in the same room. Over the years, several important milestones have taken place at the WPI reactor. In 1969, the reactor power level was upgraded from 1 kW to 10 kW. The reactor`s Nuclear Regulatory Commission operating license was renewed for 20 years in 1983. In 1988, under DOE Grant No. DE-FG07-86ER75271, the reactor was converted to low-enriched uranium fuel. In 1992, again with partial funding from DOE (Grant No. DE-FG02-90ER12982), the original control console was replaced.

  9. An IF-FISH Approach for Covisualization of Gene Loci and Nuclear Architecture in Fission Yeast.

    PubMed

    Kim, K-D; Iwasaki, O; Noma, K

    2016-01-01

    Recent genomic studies have revealed that chromosomal structures are formed by a hierarchy of organizing processes ranging from gene associations, including interactions among enhancers and promoters, to topologically associating domain formations. Gene associations identified by these studies can be characterized by microscopic analyses. Fission yeast is a model organism, in which gene associations have been broadly mapped across the genome, although many of those associations have not been further examined by cell biological approaches. To address the technically challenging process of the visualization of associating gene loci in the fission yeast nuclei, we provide, in detail, an IF-FISH procedure that allows for covisualizing both gene loci and nuclear structural markers such as the nuclear membrane and nucleolus. PMID:27423862

  10. Fission products behaviour in UO2 submitted to nuclear severe accident conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geiger, E.; Bès, R.; Martin, P.; Pontillon, Y.; Solari, P. L.; Salome, M.

    2016-05-01

    The objective of this work was to study the molybdenum chemistry in UO2 based materials, known as SIMFUELS. These materials could be used as an alternative to irradiated nuclear fuels in the study of fission products behaviour during a nuclear severe accident. UO2 samples doped with 12 stable isotopes of fission products were submitted to annealing tests in conditions representative to intermediate steps of severe accidents. Samples were characterized by SEM-EDS and XAS. It was found that Mo chemistry seems to be more complex than what is normally estimated by thermodynamic calculations: XAS spectra indicate the presence of Mo species such as metallic Mo, MoO2, MoO3 and Cs2MoO4.

  11. Nuclear Archeology for CANDU Power Reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Broadhead, Bryan L

    2011-01-01

    The goal of this work is the development of so-called 'nuclear archeology' techniques to predict the irradiation history of both fuel-related and non-fuel-related materials irradiated in the CANDU (CANada Deuterium Uranium) family of nuclear reactors. In this application to CANDU-type reactors, two different scenarios for the collection of the appropriate data for use in these procedures will be assumed: the first scenario is the removal of the pressure tubes, calandria tubes, or fuel cladding and destructive analysis of the activation products contained in these structural materials; the second scenario is the nondestructive analysis (NDA) of the same hardware items via high-resolution gamma ray scans. There are obvious advantages and disadvantages for each approach; however, the NDA approach is the central focus of this work because of its simplicity and lack of invasiveness. The use of these techniques along with a previously developed inverse capability is expected to allow for the prediction of average flux levels and irradiation time, and the total fluence for samples where the values of selected isotopes can be measured.

  12. Fission-Fusion: A new reaction mechanism for nuclear astrophysics based on laser-ion acceleration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thirolf, P. G.; Habs, D.; Gross, M.; Allinger, K.; Bin, J.; Henig, A.; Kiefer, D.; Ma, W.; Schreiber, J.

    2011-10-01

    We propose to produce neutron-rich nuclei in the range of the astrophysical r-process around the waiting point N = 126 by fissioning a dense laser-accelerated thorium ion bunch in a thorium target (covered by a CH2 layer), where the light fission fragments of the beam fuse with the light fission fragments of the target. Via the `hole-boring' mode of laser Radiation Pressure Acceleration using a high-intensity, short pulse laser, very efficiently bunches of 232Th with solid-state density can be generated from a Th target and a deuterated CD2 foil, both forming the production target assembly. Laser-accelerated Th ions with about 7 MeV/u will pass through a thin CH2 layer placed in front of a thicker second Th foil (both forming the reaction target) closely behind the production target and disintegrate into light and heavy fission fragments. In addition, light ions (d,C) from the CD2 layer of the production target will be accelerated as well, inducing the fission process of 232Th also in the second Th layer. The laser-accelerated ion bunches with solid-state density, which are about 1014 times more dense than classically accelerated ion bunches, allow for a high probability that generated fission products can fuse again. The high ion beam density may lead to a strong collective modification of the stopping power, leading to significant range and thus yield enhancement. Using a high-intensity laser as envisaged for the ELI-Nuclear Physics project in Bucharest (ELI-NP), order-of-magnitude estimates promise a fusion yield of about 103 ions per laser pulse in the mass range of A = 180-190, thus enabling to approach the r-process waiting point at N = 126.

  13. Preliminary results of calculations for heavy-water nuclear-power-plant reactors employing 235U, 233U, and 232Th as a fuel and meeting requirements of a nonproliferation of nuclear weapons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ioffe, B. L.; Kochurov, B. P.

    2012-02-01

    A physical design is developed for a gas-cooled heavy-water nuclear reactor intended for a project of a nuclear power plant. As a fuel, the reactor would employ thorium with a small admixture of enriched uranium that contains not more than 20% of 235U. It operates in the open-cycle mode involving 233U production from thorium and its subsequent burnup. The reactor meets the conditions of a nonproliferation of nuclear weapons: the content of fissionable isotopes in uranium at all stages of the process, including the final one, is below the threshold for constructing an atomic bomb, the amount of product plutonium being extremely small.

  14. Preliminary results of calculations for heavy-water nuclear-power-plant reactors employing {sup 235}U, {sup 233}U, and {sup 232}Th as a fuel and meeting requirements of a nonproliferation of nuclear weapons

    SciTech Connect

    Ioffe, B. L.; Kochurov, B. P.

    2012-02-15

    A physical design is developed for a gas-cooled heavy-water nuclear reactor intended for a project of a nuclear power plant. As a fuel, the reactor would employ thorium with a small admixture of enriched uranium that contains not more than 20% of {sup 235}U. It operates in the open-cycle mode involving {sup 233}U production from thorium and its subsequent burnup. The reactor meets the conditions of a nonproliferation of nuclear weapons: the content of fissionable isotopes in uranium at all stages of the process, including the final one, is below the threshold for constructing an atomic bomb, the amount of product plutonium being extremely small.

  15. FORIG: a computer code for calculating radionuclide generation and depletion in fusion and fission reactors. User's manual

    SciTech Connect

    Blink, J.A.

    1985-03-01

    In this manual we describe the use of the FORIG computer code to solve isotope-generation and depletion problems in fusion and fission reactors. FORIG runs on a Cray-1 computer and accepts more extensive activation cross sections than ORIGEN2 from which it was adapted. This report is an updated and a combined version of the previous ORIGEN2 and FORIG manuals. 7 refs., 15 figs., 13 tabs.

  16. Nuclear-safety criteria and specifications for space nuclear reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1982-08-01

    The policy of the United States for all US nuclear power sources in space is to ensure that the probability of release of radioactive material and the amounts released are such that an undue risk is not presented, considering the benefits of the mission. The objective of this document is to provide safety criteria which a mission/reactor designer can use to help ensure that the design is acceptable from a radiological safety standpoint. These criteria encompass mission design, reactor design, and radiological impact limitation requirements for safety, and the documentation required. They do not address terrestrial operations, occupational safety or system reliability except where the systems are important for radiological safety. Specific safety specifications based on these criteria shall also be generated and made part of contractual requirements.

  17. Measurements of miniature ionization chamber currents in the JSI TRIGA Mark II reactor demonstrate the importance of the delayed contribution to the photon field in nuclear reactors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Radulović, Vladimir; Fourmentel, Damien; Barbot, Loïc; Villard, Jean-François; Kaiba, Tanja; Gašper, Žerovnik; Snoj, Luka

    2015-12-01

    The characterization of experimental locations of a research nuclear reactor implies the determination of neutron and photon flux levels within, with the best achievable accuracy. In nuclear reactors, photon fluxes are commonly calculated by Monte Carlo simulations but rarely measured on-line. In this context, experiments were conducted with a miniature gas ionization chamber (MIC) based on miniature fission chamber mechanical parts, recently developed by the CEA (French Atomic Energy and Alternative Energies Commission) irradiated in the core of the Jožef Stefan Institute TRIGA Mark II reactor in Ljubljana, Slovenia. The aim of the study was to compare the measured MIC currents with calculated currents based on simulations with the MCNP6 code. A discrepancy of around 50% was observed between the measured and the calculated currents; in the latter taking into consideration only the prompt photon field. Further experimental measurements of MIC currents following reactor SCRAMs (reactor shutdown with rapid insertions of control rods) provide evidence that over 30% of the total measured signal is due to the delayed photon field, originating from fission and activation products, which are untreated in the calculations. In the comparison between the measured and calculated values, these findings imply an overall discrepancy of less than 20% of the total signal which is still unexplained.

  18. Determination of antineutrino spectra from nuclear reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Huber, Patrick

    2011-08-15

    In this paper we study the effect of well-known higher-order corrections to the allowed {beta}-decay spectrum on the determination of antineutrino spectra resulting from the decays of fission fragments. In particular, we try to estimate the associated theory errors and find that induced currents like weak magnetism may ultimately limit our ability to improve the current accuracy and under certain circumstance could even greatly increase the theoretical errors. We also perform a critical evaluation of the errors associated with our method to extract the antineutrino spectrum using synthetic {beta} spectra. It turns out that a fit using only virtual {beta} branches with a judicious choice of the effective nuclear charge provides results with a minimal bias. We apply this method to actual data for {sup 235}U, {sup 239}Pu, and {sup 241}Pu and confirm, within errors, recent results, which indicate a net 3% upward shift in energy-averaged antineutrino fluxes. However, we also find significant shape differences which can, in principle, be tested by high-statistics antineutrino data samples.

  19. SOFIA, a Next-Generation Facility for Fission Yields Measurements and Fission Study. First Results and Perspectives

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Audouin, L.; Pellereau, E.; Taieb, J.; Boutoux, G.; Béliera, G.; Chatillon, A.; Ebran, A.; Gorbinet, T.; Laurent, B.; Martin, J.-F.; Tassan-Got, L.; Jurado, B.; Alvarez-Pol, H.; Ayyad, Y.; Benlliure, J.; Caamano, M.; Cortina-Gil, D.; Fernandez-Dominguez, B.; Paradela, C.; Rodriguez-Sanchez, J.-L.; Vargas, J.; Casarejos, E.; Heinz, A.; Kelic-Heil, A.; Kurz, N.; Nociforo, C.; Pietri, S.; Prochazka, A.; Rossi, D.; Schmidt, K.-H.; Simon, H.; Voss, B.; Weick, H.; Winfield, J. S.

    2015-10-01

    Fission fragments play an important role in nuclear reactors evolution and safety. However, fragments yields are poorly known : data are essentially limited to mass yields from thermal neutron-induced fissions on a very few nuclei. SOFIA (Study On FIssion with Aladin) is an innovative experimental program on nuclear fission carried out at the GSI facility, which aims at providing isotopic yields on a broad range of fissioning systems. Relativistic secondary beams of actinides and pre-actinides are selected by the Fragment Separator (FRS) and their fission is triggered by electromagnetic interaction. The resulting excitation energy is comparable to the result of an interaction with a low-energy neutron, thus leading to useful data for reactor simulations. For the first time ever, both fission fragments are completely identified in charge and mass in a new recoil spectrometer, allowing for precise yields measurements. The yield of prompt neutrons can then be deduced, and the fission mechanism can be ascribed, providing new constraints for fission models. During the first experiment, all the technical challenges were matched : we have thus set new experimental standards in the measurements of relativistic heavy ions (time of flight, position, energy loss).This communication presents a first series of results obtained on the fission of 238U; many other fissioning systems have also been measured and are being analyzed presently. A second SOFIA experiment is planned in September 2014, and will be focused on the measurement of the fission of 236U, the analog of 235U+n.

  20. Radioactive Fission Product Release from Defective Light Water Reactor Fuel Elements

    SciTech Connect

    Konyashov, Vadim V.; Krasnov, Alexander M.

    2002-04-15

    Results are provided of the experimental investigation of radioactive fission product (RFP) release, i.e., krypton, xenon, and iodine radionuclides from fuel elements with initial defects during long-term (3 to 5 yr) irradiation under low linear power (5 to 12 kW/m) and during special experiments in the VK-50 vessel-type boiling water reactor.The calculation model for the RFP release from the fuel-to-cladding gap of the defective fuel element into coolant was developed. It takes into account the convective transport in the fuel-to-cladding gap and RFP sorption on the internal cladding surface and is in good agreement with the available experimental data. An approximate analytical solution of the transport equation is given. The calculation dependencies of the RFP release coefficients on the main parameters such as defect size, fuel-to-cladding gap, temperature of the internal cladding surface, and radioactive decay constant were analyzed.It is shown that the change of the RFP release from the fuel elements with the initial defects during long-term irradiation is, mainly, caused by fuel swelling followed by reduction of the fuel-to-cladding gap and the fuel temperature. The calculation model for the RFP release from defective fuel elements applicable to light water reactors (LWRs) was developed. It takes into account the change of the defective fuel element parameters during long-term irradiation. The calculation error according to the program does not exceed 30% over all the linear power change range of the LWR fuel elements (from 5 to 26 kW/m)