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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.
Byeong-Il Jang, Moo Hwan Kim, Gyoodong Jeun
Nuclear Technology | Volume 177 | Number 2 | February 2012 | Pages 203-216
Technical Paper | Thermal Hydraulics | dx.doi.org/10.13182/NT12-A13366
Articles are hosted by Taylor and Francis Online.
Research regarding small- and medium-sized nuclear reactors (SMRs) has increased because of multipurpose applications and increased safety. According to this tendency, a new conceptual nuclear reactor, the Regional Energy rX-10MWt (REX-10), is being designed. REX-10 adopts a way to remove heat by natural circulation and integrates the primary systems within a reactor pressure vessel. To evaluate the steady-state and transient behavior of natural circulation in REX-10, a NAtural Circulation TEst Reactor (NACTER) is designed using the scaling law. The ratio of the height and core power are 1/3 and 1/500, respectively.This research can be divided into three parts - a steady-state experiment, a transient experiment, and MARS (Multidimensional Analysis for Research Safety) code analysis. To investigate the natural circulation characteristics under the steady-state conditions, two parameters were chosen and various experiments were conducted. As a result of the steady-state experiment, we show that the most important parameter that affects the natural circulation behavior is the heater power. In addition, we carried out a transient experiment. The results of the transient experiment are that the NACTER facility is well controlled and guarantees safety in abrupt changes in experimental conditions. Finally, MARS code simulations were conducted. The MARS code results show good agreement with the experimental results.