Reactivity monitoring of the accelerator driven VENUS-F subcritical reactor with the ‘‘current-to-flux” method

N Marie, Jean-Luc Lecouey, Gregory Lehaut, T. Chevret, Annick Billebaud, Sebastien Chabod, Xavier Doligez, Anatoly Kochetkov, Antonin Krása, F.-R. Lecolley, Frédéric Mellier, Wim Uyttenhove, Guido Vittiglio, Jan Wagemans

Research outputpeer-review


In this article, we evaluate the quality and robustness of a method envisaged for the on-line monitoring of the subcriticality of an ADS, called the ‘‘current-to flux” (CTF) method. For this evaluation, we performed a dedicated experiment at the GUINEVERE facility. It is hosted at the SCK-CEN and consists of the subcritical VENUS-F reactor coupled to a continuous external neutron source provided by the GENEPI-3C accelerator. During this experiment, the reactor control rods were moved in various patterns, and the subsequent dynamical evolutions of the reactor reactivity were monitored using nine fission chambers (FCs). The space-energy effects that bias the reactivity values are corrected using a procedure based on simulations computed with the Monte Carlo neutron transport code MCNP. We investigate the precision of this correction procedure by comparison with a reactivity value extracted with the beam interruption technique and we demonstrate its insensitivity to the simplifications made on the VENUS-F reactor modeling and to a simulation key parameter such as the boron carbide density filling the control rods.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12-23
JournalAnnals of nuclear energy
StatePublished - 3 Jan 2019

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