Preliminary investigations of the feasibility of in-vessel melt retention strategies for a small modular reactor concept

[+] Author and Article Information
Andriolo Lena

EDF, 7 boulevard Gaspard Monge, 91120 Palaiseau, France

Mériot Clément

EDF, 7 boulevard Gaspard Monge, 91120 Palaiseau, France

Bakouta Nikolai

EDF, 7 boulevard Gaspard Monge, 91120 Palaiseau, France

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4042360 History: Received July 31, 2018; Revised December 14, 2018


The study presented in this paper is part of the technological surveillance performed at the Electricité De France (EdF) Research and Development (R&D) Center, in the PERICLES Department, and investigates the feasibility of modeling in-vessel melt retention (IVMR) phenomena for small modular reactors (SMRs) with the MAAP5 severe accident analysis code in its EDF proprietary version (MAAP5_EDF), applying conservative hypotheses, such as constant decay heat after corium relocation to the lower head. The study takes advantage of a corium stratification model in the lower head of the vessel, developed by EDF R&D for large-sized prospective pressurized water reactors (PWRs). The analysis is based on a step-wise approach in order to evaluate the impact of various effects during IVMR conditions. First, an analytical calculation is performed in order to establish a reference case to which the MAAP5_EDF code results are compared. In a second step, the impact of lower head geometry, vessel steel ablation and subsequent relocation on the heat flux has been analyzed for cases where heat dissipation through radiation is neglected (in first approximation). Finally, the impact of heat losses through radiation as well as the crust formation around the pool has been assessed. Results demonstrate the applicability of the MAAP5_EDF code to SMRs, with heat fluxes lower than 1.1 MW/m2 for relevant cases, and identifies modeling improvements.

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