Gas-cooled thorium reactor with fuel block of the unified design
Scientific researches of new technological platform realization carried out in Russia currently are based on ideas of nuclear breeding the fuel in closed fuel cycle and physical principles of fast neutron reactors. Innovative projects of low-power reactor systems correspond to the new technological platform. High-temperature gas cooled thorium reactors with good transportability properties, small installation time and operation without overloading for a long time are considered perspective. Such small modular reactor systems at good commercial, competitive level are capable of creating the basis of the regional power industry of the Russian Federation. The analysis of information about application of thorium as fuel in reactor systems and its perspective use in the future is presented in the work. The results of the first stage of neutron-physical researches of a 3D-model of the high-temperature gas-cooled thorium reactor based on fuel block of the unified design are given. Calculation 3D-model was developed using MCU-5 program code contemporary Libraries of Evaluated Nuclear Data (ENDF/B-VII.0, JEFF-3.1.1, JENDL-4.0, ROSFOND, BROND, BNAB and other) and multigroup approximations. According to the comparison results of neutron-physical characteristics several optimum reactor core compositions were chosen. According to the comparison results of neutron-physical characteristics of the considered modifications several optimum reactor core compositions intended for creation of small modular nuclear plants with the capacity to 60 MW were chosen. The selected calculation modifications refer to the reactor with large and small reactor cores with fuel assemblies containing Pu and Th in equal amounts. The reactivity margin with the larger reactor core is equal to ~21,1%, and the life-time is 510 effective days. The results of calculations of the reactivity margin, neutron flux and power density distribution in the core are presented in the work.
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