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Validation of the U.S. NRC Coupled Code System TRITON/TRACE/PARCS Using the Special Power Excursion Reactor Test III

Raymond C. Wang, Yunlin Xu, Nathanael Hudson, Thomas J. Downar

Nuclear Technology / Volume 183 / Number 3 / September 2013 / Pages 504-514

Technical Paper / Reactor Safety /

The Special Power Excursion Reactor Test III (SPERT III) was a series of reactivity insertion experiments conducted in the 1950s. This paper describes the validation of the U.S. NRC coupled code system TRITON/PARCS/TRACE to simulate reactivity insertion accidents (RIA) using several of the SPERT III tests. The NRC coupled code system was used to perform the SPERT III E-Core configuration tests in which the RIA was initiated by the rapid ejection of a central cruciform control rod. The resulting superprompt reactivity excursion and negative Doppler reactivity feedback produced the familiar bell-shaped power increase and decrease. The energy deposition during such a power excursion has important safety consequences, and the SPERT III tests provide a validation basis for the NRC coupled multiphysics codes. The models were developed using the original experiment documentation, and the results of five separate tests were used to validate the TRITON/PARCS/TRACE coupled code system.

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