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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 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.

  13. 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.

  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 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.

  20. 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.

  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. 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.

  13. 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.

  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. 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.

  16. 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)

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  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. 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.

  20. 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.

  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. 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.

  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. 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.

  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. 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.

  8. 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.

  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. 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

  13. 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.

  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. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  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. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  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. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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)

  20. 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.

  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. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  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. 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.

  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. 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.

  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. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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)

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  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. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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 .

  10. 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)

  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. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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).

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  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. 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.

  13. 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.}

  14. 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.

  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. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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)

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  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. 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.

  7. 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.

  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. 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.

  11. 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.

  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. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  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. 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

  4. 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)

  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. 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.

  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. 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.