Boosted Fast Flux Loop Final Report

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The Boosted Fast Flux Loop (BFFL) project was initiated to determine basic feasibility of designing, constructing, and installing in a host irradiation facility, an experimental vehicle that can replicate with reasonable fidelity the fast-flux test environment needed for fuels and materials irradiation testing for advanced reactor concepts. Originally called the Gas Test Loop (GTL) project, the activity included (1) determination of requirements that must be met for the GTL to be responsive to potential users, (2) a survey of nuclear facilities that may successfully host the GTL, (3) conceptualizing designs for hardware that can support the needed environments for neutron ... continued below

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Staff, Boosted Fast Flux Loop Project September 1, 2009.

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Description

The Boosted Fast Flux Loop (BFFL) project was initiated to determine basic feasibility of designing, constructing, and installing in a host irradiation facility, an experimental vehicle that can replicate with reasonable fidelity the fast-flux test environment needed for fuels and materials irradiation testing for advanced reactor concepts. Originally called the Gas Test Loop (GTL) project, the activity included (1) determination of requirements that must be met for the GTL to be responsive to potential users, (2) a survey of nuclear facilities that may successfully host the GTL, (3) conceptualizing designs for hardware that can support the needed environments for neutron flux intensity and energy spectrum, atmosphere, flow, etc. needed by the experimenters, and (4) examining other aspects of such a system, such as waste generation and disposal, environmental concerns, needs for additional infrastructure, and requirements for interfacing with the host facility. A revised project plan included requesting an interim decision, termed CD-1A, that had objectives of' establishing the site for the project at the Advanced Test Reactor (ATR) at the Idaho National Laboratory (INL), deferring the CD 1 application, and authorizing a research program that would resolve the most pressing technical questions regarding GTL feasibility, including issues relating to the use of booster fuel in the ATR. Major research tasks were (1) hydraulic testing to establish flow conditions through the booster fuel, (2) mini-plate irradiation tests and post-irradiation examination to alleviate concerns over corrosion at the high heat fluxes planned, (3) development and demonstration of booster fuel fabrication techniques, and (4) a review of the impact of the GTL on the ATR safety basis. A revised cooling concept for the apparatus was conceptualized, which resulted in renaming the project to the BFFL. Before the subsequent CD-1 approval request could be made, a decision was made in April 2006 that further funding for the project would be suspended. Remaining funds have been used to prepare and irradiate mini-plates of the proposed booster fuel. The current baseline design is for a set of three test positions inside an in-pile tube with a thermal neutron absorber and heat sink made of aluminum mixed with hafnium. Operating the ATR at power levels needed to achieve the required fast flux will result in an estimated increase in ATR fuel consumption between 15 and 20% above present rates and a reduction in the time between fuel replacements. Preliminary safety analyses conducted have indicted safe operation of the ATR with the GTL under normal, abnormal, and postulated accident conditions. More comprehensive analyses are needed.

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  • Report No.: INL/EXT-09-16413
  • Grant Number: DE-AC07-99ID-13727
  • DOI: 10.2172/966158 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 966158
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc926796

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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.

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  • September 1, 2009

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Nov. 13, 2016, 7:26 p.m.

Description Last Updated

  • Jan. 4, 2017, 2:18 p.m.

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Staff, Boosted Fast Flux Loop Project. Boosted Fast Flux Loop Final Report, report, September 1, 2009; [Idaho]. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc926796/: accessed October 15, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.