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The effects of applying silicon carbide coating on core reactivity of pebble-bed HTR in water ingress accident

Zuhair, Z and Suwoto, SW and Topan Setiadiapura, TS and Zaki Suud, ZS (2017) The effects of applying silicon carbide coating on core reactivity of pebble-bed HTR in water ingress accident. The effects of applying silicon carbide coating on core reactivity of pebble-bed HTR in water ingress accident, 82 (1). pp. 92-97.

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Abstract

Graphite is used as the moderator, fuel barrier material, and core structure in High Temperature Reactors (HTRs). However, despite its good thermal and mechanical properties below the radiation and high temperatures, it cannot avoid corrosion as a consequence of an accident of water/air ingress. Degradation of graphite as a main HTR material and the formation of dangerous CO gas is a serious problem in HTR safety. One of the several steps that can be adopted to avoid or prevent the corrosion of graphite by the water/air ingress is the application of a thin layer of silicon carbide (SiC) on the surface of the fuel element. This study investigates the effect of applying SiC coating on the fuel surfaces of pebble-bed HTR in water ingress accident from the reactivity points of view. A series of reactivity calculations were done with the Monte Carlo transport code MCNPX and continuous energy nuclear data library ENDF/B-VII at temperature of 1 200 K. Three options of UO2, PuO2, and ThO2/UO2 fuel kernel were considered to obtain the inter comparison of the core reactivity of pebble-bed HTR in conditions of water/air ingress accident. The calculation results indicated that the UO2-fueled pebble-bed HTR reactivity was slightly reduced and relatively more decreased when the thickness of the SiC coating increased. The reactivity characteristic of ThO2/UO2-fueled pebble-bed HTR showed a similar trend to that of UO2, but did not show reactivity peak caused by water ingress. In contrast with UO2- and ThO2-fueled pebble-bed HTR, although the reactivity of PuO2-fueled pebble-bed HTR was the lowest, its characteristics showed a very high reactivity peak (0.33 Δk/k) and this introduction of positive reactivity is difficult to control. SiC coating on the surface of the plutonium fuel pebble has no significant impact. From the comparison between reactivity characteristics of uranium, thorium and plutonium cores with 0.10 cm thick SiC coating, it can be concluded that the effect of SiC coating on core reactivity in water ingress accident is more dominant for the pebble-bed HTR fuelled with thorium than those with uranium and plutonium fuels.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Keselamatan dan Keamanan Nuklir
Divisions: Pusat Teknologi dan Keselamatan Reaktor Nuklir
Depositing User: USER PTKRN BATAN
Date Deposited: 16 May 2018 09:02
Last Modified: 16 May 2018 09:02
URI: http://repo-nkm.batan.go.id/id/eprint/1873

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