Determinating the stored Wigner energy accumulation rate in the graphite moderator
According to latest publications, new methods to determine the value of the Wigner energy in the graphite are required. Purpose: to develop method for determining the rate of accumulation of the Wigner energy in the graphite moderator. Stored energy is proportional to the number of point defects in the crystal structure, so the decision comes down to the determination of this number. The article contains analysis of four models to form cascades of defects. Analysis of results allowed identifying two models that give physically correct values in the area of low and high energy neutrons. According to models, point defects concentration depends on neutron flux density and temperature in a specific way. The values of the cascade function allows to determine the relations of changes in the number of defects and the energy stored during in irradiated graphite and annealing of defects in graphite after irradiation. It is found that a self-sustaining release of stored energy is possible only in the graphite operated at sufficiently low temperatures to 100°C. The condition of self-sustaining release of stored energy is valid for an adiabatic process. Comparative analysis of calculation results and the experimental data proved that this method satisfactorily describes the process of changing the Wigner energy during and after irradiation of graphite.
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