Planning the HEU to LEU Transition for the NBSR

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A study has been carried out to understand how the NIST research reactor (NBSR) might be converted from using high-enriched uranium (HEU) to using low-enriched uranium (LEU) fuel. An LEU fuel design had previously been determined which provides an equilibrium core with the desirable fuel cycle length - a very important parameter for maintaining the experimental, scientific program supported by the NBSR. In the present study two options for getting to the equilibrium state are considered. One option starts with the loading of an entire core of fresh fuel. This was determined to be unacceptable. The other option makes use ... continued below

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Hanson, A.L. & Diamond, D. September 12, 2011.

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Description

A study has been carried out to understand how the NIST research reactor (NBSR) might be converted from using high-enriched uranium (HEU) to using low-enriched uranium (LEU) fuel. An LEU fuel design had previously been determined which provides an equilibrium core with the desirable fuel cycle length - a very important parameter for maintaining the experimental, scientific program supported by the NBSR. In the present study two options for getting to the equilibrium state are considered. One option starts with the loading of an entire core of fresh fuel. This was determined to be unacceptable. The other option makes use of the current fuel management scheme wherein four fresh fuel elements are loaded at the beginning of each cycle. However, it is shown that without some alterations to the fuel cycle, none of the transition cores containing both HEU and LEU fuel have sufficient excess reactivity to operate the reactor for the optimum length. It was determined that operating the first mixed cycle for a sufficiently reduced length of time provides the excess reactivity which enables subsequent cycles to be run for the desired number of days.

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  • TRTR 2011 (Test, Research & Training Reactors); Idaho Falls, Idaho; 20110912 through 20110915

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  • Report No.: BNL--96348-2011-CP
  • Grant Number: DE-AC02-98CH10886
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 1029258
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc830414

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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Creation Date

  • September 12, 2011

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • May 19, 2016, 3:16 p.m.

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  • July 21, 2016, 7:03 p.m.

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Hanson, A.L. & Diamond, D. Planning the HEU to LEU Transition for the NBSR, article, September 12, 2011; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc830414/: accessed October 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.