On physics of a hypothetical core disruptive accident in Multipurpose hYbrid Research Reactor for High-tech Applications-MYRRHA

Đorđe Petrović, Matteo Zanetti, Guy Scheveneels, Andrei Rineiski, Xue-Nong Chen, William D'Haeseleer

Research outputpeer-review


The sensitivity of the reactivity of a fast reactor core to changes in its geometry and/or fuel relocation calls for particular attention with regard to criticality events. A category of these events, the so-called Core Disruptive Accidents (CDAs), are intensively studied in the safety assessment of Sodium-cooled
Fast Reactors (SFRs), and more recently also in the case of other systems. Differences between SFRs and Heavy Liquid Metal Fast Reactors (HLMFRs) are significant and therefore warrant an understanding of phenomena and the development of models specific to HLMFRs. This paper provides a qualitative
overview of the physics relevant to the investigation of a CDA in HLMFR, with a particular application to the Multipurpose hYbrid Research Reactor for High-tech Applications - MYRRHA. At first, a core compaction mechanism viable for an HLMFR has been postulated. In what follows, simulation by an already existing severe accidents code, as well as modelling based on fundamental physics and engineering, have been performed. It is demonstrated that, for a linear insertion of reactivity due to hypothetical core compaction, the reversal of reactivity evolution happens due to the Doppler effect and the thermal expansion of core materials. Subsequent expansion by fuel melting terminates the prompt-critical event and makes the system delayed-supercritical. Successive fuel and/or coolant boiling is responsible for the hydrodynamic disassembly of the core and it therefore effectively terminates the transient.
Original languageEnglish
Article number4
Number of pages9
JournalEPJ Nuclear Science & Technologies
Issue numberPart 1: Safety research and training of reactor systems
StatePublished - 10 Jan 2023
Event2022 - FISA 2022 - EURADWASTE '22: 10th Euratom Conference on Reactor Safety & 10th Euratom Conference Radioactive Waste Management - Hôtel de Région Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, Lyon
Duration: 30 May 20223 Jun 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering

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