The possibility of improving inherent safety BN-800 by the use of fuel assembly with (U, Pu)c microfuel
The task undertaken in the report is to increase inherent safety of the fast reactor with a sodium coolant of type BN-800 due to considering the possibility of using innovation fuel assemblies with mixed uranium-plutonium carbide fuel in form of coated particles. Fuel assemblies with pellet MOX fuel and fuel rods are directly replaced by microspherical mixed (U,Pu)C-fuel. Calculation evaluations of characteristics of fuel assemblies with microspherical fuel are realized.
A calculation comparison of neutron physics and thermal hydraulics characteristics of the innovation fuel assemblies with microspherical mixed (U,Pu)C-fuel and the traditional fuel assemblies with pellet MOX fuel and fuel rods was conducted.
The main positive moments of conversion to fuel assemblies (FA) with microspherical fuel are: – increase of inherent safety in emergencies due to developed surface of heat removal, low part of stored heat and microfuel high temperature resistance. – improvement of neutronics characteristics due to low fuel temperature, decrease of steel quantity in FA and use of highly heat conducting dense mixed carbide fuel in the closed fuel cycle. – increase of fuel breeding ratio and decrease of reactivity margin; it is possible to optimize and improve these parameters further taking into consideration that study was conducted within the framework of BN-800 reactor core.
The chosen calculation model was BN-800 reactor core with MOX fuel, where a three-zone radial power density field flattening due to plutonium content change in fuel was used.
Thanks to microspherical carbide fuel, inherent safety of the reactor increases in accidents with loss of coolant flow and introduction of positive reactivity because the coated particles have developed heat-exchange surface and their coats are able to keep fission products at higher temperatures than the steel cladding of traditional fuel rods.
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