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research-article

Combining RAVEN, RELAP5-3D and PHISICS for Fuel Cycle and Core Design Analysis for New Cladding Criteria

[+] Author and Article Information
Andrea Alfonsi

Idaho National Laboratory 2525 Fremont Ave Idaho Falls, ID, 83402
Andrea.Alfonsi@inl.gov

George L Mesina

ASME Membership Idaho National Laboratory 2525 Fremont Ave Idaho Falls, ID, 83402
george.mesina@inl.gov

Angelo Zoino

University La Sapienza Rome, 00135, Italy
Angelo@Zoino.it

Nolan Anderson

Idaho National Laboratory 2525 Fremont Ave Idaho Falls, ID, 83402
Nolan.Anderson@inl.gov

Cristian Rabiti

Idaho National Laboratory 2525 Fremont Ave Idaho Falls, ID, 83402
Cristian.Rabiti@inl.gov

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4035851 History: Received September 29, 2016; Revised December 16, 2016

Abstract

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has considered revision of 10-CFR-50.46C rule [1] to account for burn-up rate effects in future analysis of reactor accident scenarios so that safety margins may evolve as dynamic limits with reactor operation and reloading. To find these limiting conditions, both cladding oxidation and maximum temperature must be cast as functions of fuel exposure. To run a plant model through a long operational transient to fuel reload is computationally intensive, and this must be repeated for each reload until the time of the accident scenario. Moreover for probabilistic risk assessment, this must be done for many different fuel reload patterns. To perform such new analyses in a reasonable amount of computational time with good accuracy, Idaho National Laboratory (INL) has developed new multi-physics tools by combining existing codes and adding new capabilities. The PHISICS toolkit [2,3] for neutronic and reactor physics is coupled with the RELAP5-3D [4] for the Loss of Coolant Accident (LOCA) analysis and RAVEN [5] for the Probabilistic Risk Assessment (PRA) and margin characterization analysis. For RELAP5-3D to process a single sequence of cores in a continuous run required a sequence of restarting input decks, each with different neutronics or thermal-hydraulic flow region and culminating in an accident scenario. A new multi-deck input processing capability was developed and verified for this analysis. The combined RAVEN/PHISICS/RELAP5-3D tool is used to analyze a typical Pressurized Water Reactor (PWR).

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