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Nuclear Science and Engineering
Fusion Science and Technology
What are the key cost drivers for microreactors?
Microreactors upend the traditional economics of nuclear power plants by shifting the paradigm from economies of scale (large reactors) to economies of multiple (mass production). While shrinking power output per unit may increase costs per kilowatt compared to large plants, offsetting gains can be expected from simplified and standardized designs, factory fabrication, inherent safety, lower radionuclide inventories, fast installation, and low financing costs. For instance, the lower power density in a microreactor core leads to a greatly reduced decay heat source, simplifying emergency cooling needs. These design aspects can lead to innovations including substantial simplifications to safety and control needs, minimized human operational requirements, a very compact balance of plant, the ability to fabricate almost every component in a factory, shortened construction time, and less daunting financing.
P. Chandramohan, M. P. Srinivasan, S. Velmurugan
Nuclear Technology | Volume 200 | Number 3 | December 2017 | Pages 269-277
Technical Paper | dx.doi.org/10.1080/00295450.2017.1371561
Articles are hosted by Taylor and Francis Online.
Chromite or chromium containing oxides are formed as a protective oxide film on the stainless steel surface of heat transport systems. The chemical dissolution of these passive oxide films forms an important step in decontamination formulation development for water-cooled nuclear reactor systems. Dissolved ozone as a reagent was tested for effective chemical dissolution of Fe3+ substituted in nickel chromite and individual component oxides. The study showed the importance of the solution pH and temperature on the dissolution kinetics of Cr2O3, NiO, and NiFexCr2-xO4. Neutral water pH or 0.04 mM OH− were better for achieving a high dissolution rate for chromium containing oxides compared to acidic (2.5 mM H+) or alkaline conditions. In an acidic condition, the release of nickel from NiO or nickel chromite was more in the ozone medium compared to a high pH condition. Substitution of Fe3+ in nickel chromite affected the dissolution behavior in the ozone medium. The dissolution of Fe3+ substituted in nickel chromite showed a small increase in the dissolution rate constant with up to composition x = 0.4, and further increase in the Fe3+ composition in the oxide lattice decreased the dissolution rate constant.