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FFTF Probe-Type Eddy-Current Flowmeter: Wet Versus dry Performance Evaluation in Sodium

T. J. Costello, R. L. Laubham, W. R. Miller, C. R. Smith

Nuclear Technology

Volume 19 / Number 3 / September 1973 / Pages 174-180


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An eddy-current flowmeter (ECFM), designed to measure the velocity of coolant sodium exiting the fuel subassemblies of the Fast Flux Test Facility (FFTF) to be built at Richland, Washington, was tested in the Westinghouse Advanced Reactors Division’s General Purpose Loop No. 2 (GPL-2) during the period of October 2, 1971 to March 16, 1972. The ECFM was operated in both a wet and dry prototypic (FFTF) design test housing. In the wet design test housing, the ECFM is exposed directly to sodium; in the dry design test housing, the ECFM is shielded from sodium by a stainless-steel “thimble.” During both tests, the same ECFM electronics supply and associated wiring were used. The same ECFM electrical adjustments also were employed in both cases. Throughout the total testing period of 1351.6 h, the ECFM operated satisfactorily. No failures or malfunctions occurred in the ECFM, its power supply, or the three test thermocouples. Significantly, the data showed that the ECFM’s overall average dc output signal in the dry design was 62% of that in the wet design.

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