Key Physical Parameters and Temperature Reactivity Coefficients of the Deep Burn Modular Helium Reactor Fueled with LWRs Waste
2004 (English)In: Annals of Nuclear Energy, ISSN 0306-4549, E-ISSN 1873-2100, Vol. 31, 1913-1931 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
We investigated some important neutronic features of the deep burn modular helium reactor (DB-MHR) using the MCNP/MCB codes. Our attention was focused on the neutron flux and its spectrum, capture to fission ratio of Pu-239 and the temperature coefficient of fuel and moderator. The DB-MHR is a graphite-moderated helium-cooled reactor proposed by General Atomic to address the need for a fast and efficient incineration of plutonium for nonproliferation purposes as well as the management of light water reactors (LWRs) waste. In fact, recent studies have shown that the use of the DB-MHR coupled to ordinary LWRs would keep constant the world inventory of plutonium for a reactor fleet producing 400 TWe/y. In the present studies, the DB-MHR is loaded with Np-Pu driver fuel (DF) with an isotopic composition corresponding to LWRs spent fuel waste. DF uses fissile isotopes (e.g. Pu-239 and Pu-241), previously generated in the LWRs, and maintains criticality conditions in the DB-MHR. After an irradiation of three years, the spent DF is reprocessed and its remaining actinides are manufactured into fresh transmutation fuel (TF). TF mainly contains non-fissile actinides which undergo neutron capture and transmutation during the subsequent three-year irradiation in the DB-MHR. At the same time, TF provides control and negative reactivity feedback to the reactor. After extraction of the spent TF, irradiated for three years, over 94% of Pu-239 and 53% of all actinides coming from LWRs waste will have been destroyed in the DB-MHR. In this paper we look at the operation conditions at equilibrium for the DB-MHR and evaluate fluxes and reactivity responses using state of the art 3-D Monte Carlo simulations.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2004. Vol. 31, 1913-1931 p.
coated particle fuel, gas-cooled reactors, nuclear-waste, monte-carlo, behavior, htgr, transmutation, elements, release, safety
Atom and Molecular Physics and Optics
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-5544DOI: 10.1016/j.anucene.2004.05.006ISI: 000224257800006ScopusID: 2-s2.0-4444238018OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-5544DiVA: diva2:9944
QC 20100922 QC 201109152006-04-052006-04-052011-09-15Bibliographically approved