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2021 Student Conference
April 8–10, 2021
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NC State celebrates 70 years of nuclear engineering education
An early picture of the research reactor building on the North Carolina State University campus. The Department of Nuclear Engineering is celebrating the 70th anniversary of its nuclear engineering curriculum in 2020–2021. Photo: North Carolina State University
The Department of Nuclear Engineering at North Carolina State University has spent the 2020–2021 academic year celebrating the 70th anniversary of its becoming the first U.S. university to establish a nuclear engineering curriculum. It started in 1950, when Clifford Beck, then of Oak Ridge, Tenn., obtained support from NC State’s dean of engineering, Harold Lampe, to build the nation’s first university nuclear reactor and, in conjunction, establish an educational curriculum dedicated to nuclear engineering.
The department, host to the 2021 ANS Virtual Student Conference, scheduled for April 8–10, now features 23 tenure/tenure-track faculty and three research faculty members. “What a journey for the first nuclear engineering curriculum in the nation,” said Kostadin Ivanov, professor and department head.
E. E. Lewis, M. A. Smith, G. Palmiotti
Nuclear Science and Engineering | Volume 161 | Number 3 | March 2009 | Pages 279-288
Technical Paper | dx.doi.org/10.13182/NSE161-279
Articles are hosted by Taylor and Francis Online.
A new paradigm that increases the efficiency of whole-core neutron transport calculations without lattice homogenization is introduced. Quasi-reflected interface conditions are formulated to partially decouple periodic lattice effects from global flux gradients. The starting point is the finite subelement form of the variational nodal code VARIANT that eliminates fuel-coolant homogenization through the use of heterogeneous nodes. The interface spherical harmonics expansions that couple pin-cell-sized nodes are divided into low-order and high-order terms, and reflected interface conditions are applied to the high-order terms. Combined with an integral transport method within the node, the new approach dramatically reduces both the formation time and the dimensions of the nodal response matrices and leads to sharply reduced memory requirements and computational time. The method is applied to the two-dimensional C5G7 problem, an Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development/Nuclear Energy Agency pressurized water reactor benchmark containing mixed oxide (MOX) and UO2 fuel assemblies, as well as to a three-dimensional MOX fuel assembly. Results indicate the new approach results in very little loss of accuracy relative to the corresponding full spherical harmonics expansions while reducing computational times by well over an order of magnitude.