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Nuclear Science and Engineering
Fusion Science and Technology
NRC moves ahead on HALEU enrichment, rulemaking, and guidance
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is requesting comments on the regulatory basis for a proposed rule for light water reactor fuel designs featuring high-assay low-enriched uranium (HALEU), including accident tolerant fuel (ATF) designs, and on draft guidance for the environmental evaluation of ATFs containing uranium enriched up to 8 percent U-235. Some of the HALEU feedstock for those LWR fuels and for advanced reactor fuels could be produced within the first Category II fuel facility licensed by the NRC—Centrus Energy’s American Centrifuge Plant in Piketon, Ohio. On September 21, the NRC approved the start of enrichment operations in the plant’s modest 16-machine HALEU demonstration cascade.
Tim D. Bohm, Edward P. Marriott, Mohamed E. Sawan
Fusion Science and Technology | Volume 72 | Number 4 | November 2017 | Pages 595-600
Technical Paper | doi.org/10.1080/15361055.2017.1350484
Articles are hosted by Taylor and Francis Online.
The ITER vacuum vessel (VV) is a double walled toroidal shaped stainless steel structure divided into nine 40 degree sectors. In the design process for the ITER blanket system (which provides shielding for the VV), determining integrated nuclear heating loads on the VV is important for cooling system sizing and determining localized nuclear heating on the VV is important for assessing thermal stress loads. Further, determining radiation damage, displacements per atom (dpa) on the VV, is important in meeting pressure vessel limits. Near the neutral beam injection (NBI) region of the VV (both sector 2 and sector 3), there are significant gaps and cut-outs in the blanket system to accommodate the 3 heating neutral beam (HNB) ports and the diagnostic neutral beam (DNB) port. These features lead to higher localized radiation loads. Previous analysis indicated high nuclear heating and dpa in the NBI region. The CAD based DAG-MCNP5 transport code was used to perform neutronics calculations in detailed, updated CAD models of the NBI region. For this work, a 40 degree model of sector 2 (which includes the HNB1 port, the DNB port, and the HNB2 port) was analyzed. Three design options were investigated which add shielding in the DNB port region by using port liners. Mesh tally maps of both nuclear heating and dpa are provided for the VV in the BM13-16 region. Peak dpa values ranged from 0.41–0.65 dpa. Two of the 3 design options investigated had peak dpa values near the DNB port within the ITER dpa limit of 0.5 dpa. Peak nuclear heating results ranged from 1.7 W/cm3 to 2.0 W/cm3. The mesh tally maps of nuclear heating have been provided to the ITER Organization for subsequent finite element engineering analysis. Preliminary analysis has shown the thermal stress levels are unacceptable with the added shielding. The results of this work are being used by the ITER Blanket and Tokamak Integration groups to assess the current design and modify blanket module (BM) design where needed if radiation loads are excessive.