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The division's objectives are to promote the advancement of knowledge and understanding of the fundamental physical phenomena characterizing nuclear reactors and other nuclear systems. The division encourages research and disseminates information through meetings and publications. Areas of technical interest include nuclear data, particle interactions and transport, reactor and nuclear systems analysis, methods, design, validation and operating experience and standards. The Wigner Award heads the awards program.
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Study: New U.K. nuclear likely to be lower carbon source than solar or wind
A recent study of life cycle carbon emissions at the United Kingdom’s Hinkley Point C nuclear plant finds that the facility, now under construction in Somerset, England, is likely to produce less CO2 over its lifetime than either solar or wind power.
According to the 70-page analysis—prepared by environmental consultancy Ricardo Energy & Environment for NNB Generation Company HPC Limited, the holding company for the Hinkley Point project—lifetime emissions from Hinkley Point C are likely to be about 5.5g CO2e per kWh. That amount also holds for the proposed Sizewell C plant, the study concludes. (The two 1,630-MWe EPRs at Hinkley Point C are currently scheduled to begin commercial operation in 2026 and 2027.)
Ian Porter, Travis W. Knight, Patrick Raynaud
Nuclear Technology | Volume 190 | Number 2 | May 2015 | Pages 174-182
Technical Paper | Fuel Cycle and Management | dx.doi.org/10.13182/NT14-100
Articles are hosted by Taylor and Francis Online.
Nuclear reactor systems codes have the ability to model the system response in an accident scenario based on known initial conditions (ICs) at the onset of the transient. However, there has been a tendency for these codes to lack the detailed thermomechanical fuel rod response models needed for best-estimate prediction of fuel rod failure. Alternatively, the reverse can be said about fuel performance codes; they can lack the ability to capture and model the thermal-hydraulic (T-H) influence of adjacent fuel rods and the rod's location in the reactor core. This work analyzes the limitations in using fuel performance codes to represent in-reactor conditions as determined by full-core T-H codes. The codes used in this analysis are the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission's steady-state fuel performance code FRAPCON-3.5 and T-H code TRACE-V5P3. In order to assess the impact of the limitations found in the codes, several modifications were made to all of the codes to improve code-to-code consistency. The modifications to the fuel performance code include adding the ability to model gamma-ray heating and providing realistic core coolant conditions. The T-H code modifications include adding the ability to model the fuel with axially varying burnup-dependent fuel and cladding dimensional changes and corrosion characteristics. The fuel in a Westinghouse four-loop pressurized water reactor was modeled to assess the impacts these modifications have on fuel performance and ICs for transient analysis. The results of this study show that current modeling assumptions (and limitations) can yield both conservative and nonconservative results on several important licensing criteria.