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Nonlinear Diffusion Acceleration of the Least-Squares Transport Equation in Geometries with Voids

Hans R. Hammer, Jim E. Morel, Yaqi Wang

Nuclear Science and Engineering / Volume 193 / Number 5 / May 2019 / Pages 453-480

Technical Paper / dx.doi.org/10.1080/00295639.2018.1542865

Received:August 6, 2018
Accepted:October 29, 2018
Published:March 29, 2019

In this paper we show the extension of nonlinear diffusion acceleration (NDA) to geometries containing small voids using a weighted-least-squares (WLS) high-order equation. Even though the WLS equation is well defined in voids, the low-order drift-diffusion equation was not defined in materials with a zero cross section. This paper derives the necessary modifications to the NDA algorithm. We show that a small change to the NDA closure term and a nonlocal definition of the diffusion coefficient solve the problems for void regions. These changes do not affect the algorithm for optically thick material regions while making the algorithm well defined in optically thin ones. We use a Fourier analysis to perform an iterative analysis to confirm that the modifications result in a stable and efficient algorithm. Later in the paper, numerical results of our method are presented. We test this formulation with a small, one-dimensional test problem. Additionally, we present results for a modified version of the C5G7 benchmark containing voids as a more complex, reactor-like problem. We compared our results to Texas A&M’s transport code PDT, utilizing a first-order discontinuous formulation as reference and the self-adjoint angular flux equation with void treatment (SAAF), a different second-order form. The results indicate that the NDA WLS performed comparably or slightly worse then the asymmetric SAAF while maintaining a symmetric discretization matrix.

 
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