This study proposes a new fast reactor core concept dedicated to plutonium and minor actinide burning by transmutation. This core has a large power level of ~1500 MW(electric) favoring the economic aspect. To promote plutonium and minor actinide burning as much as possible, total suppression of 238U, which produces 239Pu by conversion, and large quantities of minor actinides in the core are desirable. Therefore, the 238U-free fuel is homogeneously mixed with a considerable quantity of minor actinides.

From the safety point of view, both the Doppler effect and the coolant (sodium) void reactivity become less favorable in a 238U-free core. To preserve these two important safety parameters on an acceptable level, a hydrogenated moderator separated from the fuel and nuclides, such as W or 99Tc, is added to the core in the place of 238U. Tungsten and 99Tc have strong capture resonances at appropriate energies, and 99Tc itself is a long-lived fission product to be transmuted with profit.

This core allows the achievement of a consumption rate of ~100 kg/TW(electric)h of transuranic elements, ~70 kg/TW(electric)h for plutonium (due to 238U suppression), and 30 to 35 kg/TW(electric)h for minor actinides. In addition, ~14 kg/TW(electric)h of 99Tc is destroyed when this element is present in the core (the initial loading of 99Tc is >4000 kg in the core).

The activity of newly designed subassemblies has also been investigated in comparison to standard fast reactor subassemblies (neutron sources, decay heat, and gamma dose rate). Finally, a transmutation scenario involving pressurized water reactors and minor actinide-burning fast reactors has been studied to estimate the necessary proportion of burner reactors and the achievable radiotoxicity reduction with respect to a reference open cycle.