Extrapolated experimental critical parameters of unreflected and steel-reflected massive enriched uranium metal spherical and hemispherical assemblies

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Sixty-nine critical configurations of up to 186 kg of uranium are reported from very early experiments (1960s) performed at the Rocky Flats Critical Mass Laboratory near Denver, Colorado. Enriched (93%) uranium metal spherical and hemispherical configurations were studied. All were thick-walled shells except for two solid hemispheres. Experiments were essentially unreflected; or they included central and/or external regions of mild steel. No liquids were involved. Critical parameters are derived from extrapolations beyond subcritical data. Extrapolations, rather than more precise interpolations between slightly supercritical and slightly subcritical configurations, were necessary because experiments involved manually assembled configurations. Many extrapolations were quite long; ... continued below

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162 p.

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Rothe, R.E. December 1, 1997.

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Description

Sixty-nine critical configurations of up to 186 kg of uranium are reported from very early experiments (1960s) performed at the Rocky Flats Critical Mass Laboratory near Denver, Colorado. Enriched (93%) uranium metal spherical and hemispherical configurations were studied. All were thick-walled shells except for two solid hemispheres. Experiments were essentially unreflected; or they included central and/or external regions of mild steel. No liquids were involved. Critical parameters are derived from extrapolations beyond subcritical data. Extrapolations, rather than more precise interpolations between slightly supercritical and slightly subcritical configurations, were necessary because experiments involved manually assembled configurations. Many extrapolations were quite long; but the general lack of curvature in the subcritical region lends credibility to their validity. In addition to delayed critical parameters, a procedure is offered which might permit the determination of prompt critical parameters as well for the same cases. This conjectured procedure is not based on any strong physical arguments.

Physical Description

162 p.

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INIS; OSTI as DE98052564

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  • Other Information: PBD: Dec 1997

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  • Other: DE98052564
  • Report No.: INEEL/EXT--97-01401
  • Grant Number: AC07-94ID13223
  • DOI: 10.2172/658339 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 658339
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc702227

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  • December 1, 1997

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  • Sept. 12, 2015, 6:31 a.m.

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  • July 19, 2016, 12:09 p.m.

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Rothe, R.E. Extrapolated experimental critical parameters of unreflected and steel-reflected massive enriched uranium metal spherical and hemispherical assemblies, report, December 1, 1997; Idaho Falls, Idaho. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc702227/: accessed October 15, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.