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Heat Transfer Issues in Finite Element Analysis of Bounding Accidents in PPCS Models

R. Pampin, P. J. Karditsas

Fusion Science and Technology / Volume 47 / Number 4 / May 2005 / Pages 1003-1007

Technical Paper / Fusion Energy - Tritium, Safety, and Environment

Modelling of temperature excursions in structures of conceptual power plants during hypothetical worst-case accidents has been performed within the European Power Plant Conceptual Study (PPCS). A new, 3D finite elements (FE) based tool, coupling the different calculations to the same tokamak geometry, has been extensively used to conduct the neutron transport, activation and thermal analyses for all PPCS plant models. During a total loss of cooling, the usual assumption for the bounding accident, passive removal of the decay heat from activated materials depends on conduction and radiation heat exchange between components. This paper presents and discusses results obtained during the PPCS bounding accident thermal analyses, examining the following issues: (a) radiation heat exchange between the inner surfaces of the tokamak, (b) the presence of air within the cryostat volume, and the heat flow arising from the circulation pattern provided by temperature differences between various parts, and (c) the thermal conductivity of pebble beds, and its degradation due to exposure to neutron irradiation, affecting the heat transfer capability and thermal response of a blanket based on these components.

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