Spatial Burnout in Water Reactors with Nonuniform Startup Distributions of Uranium and Boron

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Spatial burnout calculations have been made of two types of water moderated cylindrical reactor using boron as a burnable poison to increase reactor life. Specific reactors studied were a version of the Submarine Advanced Reactor (sAR) and a supercritical water reactor (SCW) . Burnout characteristics such as reactivity excursion, neutron-flux and heat-generation distributions, and uranium and boron distributions have been determined for core lives corresponding to a burnup of approximately 7 kilograms of fully enriched uranium. All reactivity calculations have been based on the actual nonuniform distribution of absorbers existing during intervals of core life. Spatial burnout of uranium and ... continued below

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Fox, Thomas A. & Bogart, Donald March 23, 1955.

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  • Main Title: Spatial Burnout in Water Reactors with Nonuniform Startup Distributions of Uranium and Boron
  • Series Title: NACA Research Memorandums

Description

Spatial burnout calculations have been made of two types of water moderated cylindrical reactor using boron as a burnable poison to increase reactor life. Specific reactors studied were a version of the Submarine Advanced Reactor (sAR) and a supercritical water reactor (SCW) . Burnout characteristics such as reactivity excursion, neutron-flux and heat-generation distributions, and uranium and boron distributions have been determined for core lives corresponding to a burnup of approximately 7 kilograms of fully enriched uranium. All reactivity calculations have been based on the actual nonuniform distribution of absorbers existing during intervals of core life. Spatial burnout of uranium and boron and spatial build-up of fission products and equilibrium xenon have been- considered. Calculations were performed on the NACA nuclear reactor simulator using two-group diff'usion theory. The following reactor burnout characteristics have been demonstrated: 1. A significantly lower excursion in reactivity during core life may be obtained by nonuniform rather than uniform startup distribution of uranium. Results for SCW with uranium distributed to provide constant radial heat generation and a core life corresponding to a uranium burnup of 7 kilograms indicated a maximum excursion in reactivity of 2.5 percent. This compared to a maximum excursion of 4.2 percent obtained for the same core life when w'anium was uniformly distributed at startup. Boron was incorporated uniformly in these cores at startup. 2. It is possible to approach constant radial heat generation during the life of a cylindrical core by means of startup nonuniform radial and axial distributions of uranium and boron. Results for SCW with nonuniform radial distribution of uranium to provide constant radial heat generation at startup and with boron for longevity indicate relatively small departures from the initially constant radial heat generation distribution during core life. Results for SAR with a sinusoidal distribution rather than uniform axial distributions of boron indicate significant improvements in axial heat generation distribution during the greater part of core life. 3. Uranium investments for cylindrical reactors with nonuniform radial uranium distributions which provide constant radial heat generation per unit core volume are somewhat higher than for reactors with uniform uranium concentration at startup. On the other hand, uranium investments for reactors with axial boron distributions which approach constant axial heat generation are somewhat smaller than for reactors with uniform boron distributions at startup.

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  • URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2060/20090023596 External Link
  • Report No.: NACA-RM-E55C16
  • Center for AeroSpace Information Number: 20090023596
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc65307

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National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics Collection

The National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) was a U.S. federal agency founded on March 3, 1915 to undertake, promote, and institutionalize aeronautical research. On October 1, 1958 the agency was dissolved, and its assets and personnel transferred to the newly created National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

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Creation Date

  • March 23, 1955

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Nov. 17, 2011, 5:13 p.m.

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  • Jan. 22, 2018, 11:53 a.m.

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Fox, Thomas A. & Bogart, Donald. Spatial Burnout in Water Reactors with Nonuniform Startup Distributions of Uranium and Boron, report, March 23, 1955; (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc65307/: accessed November 14, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.