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Development of a Code with the Capability of Internal Assessment of Uncertainty

Francesco D'Auria, Walter Giannotti

Nuclear Technology

Volume 131 / Number 2 / August 2000 / Pages 159-196


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The internal assessment of uncertainty is a desirable capability for thermal-hydraulic system codes. This consists of the possibility of obtaining proper uncertainty bands each time a nuclear plant transient scenario is calculated. A methodology suitable for introducing such a capability into a system code is discussed. At the basis of the derivation of the code with (the capability of) internal assessment of uncertainty (CIAU), there is the uncertainty methodology based on the accuracy extrapolation (UMAE), previously proposed by the University of Pisa, although other uncertainty methodologies can be used for the same purpose.

The idea of the CIAU is the identification and the characterization of standard plant statuses and the association of uncertainty to each status. One hypercube and one time interval identify the plant status. Quantity and time uncertainties are combined for each plant status.

The recently released U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission RELAP5/MOD3.2 system code constitutes the CIAU. This is used for showing the applicability of the proposed method. The derivation of the methodology is discussed, and reference results of pressurized water reactor plant transients are shown bounded by the CIAU-calculated uncertainty bands.

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