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A day in the life of the nuclear community
The November issue of Nuclear News is focused on the individuals who make up our nuclear community.
We invited a small group of those individuals to tell us about their day-to-day work in some of the many occupations and applications of nuclear science and technology, and they responded generously. They were ready to tell us about the part they play, together with colleagues and team members, in supplying clean energy, advancing technology, protecting safety and health, and exploring fundamental science.
In these pages, we see a community that can celebrate both those workdays that record progress moving at a steady pace and the exceptional days when a goal is reached, a briefing is delivered, a contract goes through, a discovery is made, or an unforeseen challenge is overcome.
The Nuclear News staff hopes that you enjoy meeting these members of our community—or maybe get reacquainted with friends—through their words and photos.
Mathieu Martin, Daniel Leonard, R. Brian Jackson, K. Michael Steer
Nuclear Technology | Volume 206 | Number 9 | September 2020 | Pages 1325-1336
Technical Paper | dx.doi.org/10.1080/00295450.2020.1727263
Articles are hosted by Taylor and Francis Online.
TerraPower participated in a cooperative project among industry, a national laboratory, and a university to perform verification and validation of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) methods for predicting the flow and heat transfer within fuel assemblies with hexagonally packed wire-wrapped fuel pins. This project consisted of both experimental and numerical components and used surrogate fluids and electrically heated fuel pins to substitute for liquid metal and nuclear fuel. TerraPower performed CFD simulations of the experiments using industrial-level Reynolds-averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) turbulence modeling. These simulations of helically wire-wrapped fuel assemblies employed meshes of bare pins without the wire-wrap geometry explicitly modeled. Instead, the effect of the wire-wrap on the flow is accounted for by introducing a momentum source (MS) into the governing fluid equations.
Solution validation was conducted by benchmarking the CFD simulations to the heated bundle experiments. These simulations used the as-tested boundary and operating conditions but were conducted blind. Pressure drop measurements and local temperature measurements were compared.
Axial pressure drop simulation results compared well with the experiment measurements. The vast majority of the local CFD temperatures matched thermocouple measurements within the instrument uncertainty. The good agreement between simulation and experiment supports the use of RANS-based CFD simulation methods and the specific applied MS method to model wire-wrapped fuel assemblies.