The restart of the BR2 reactor after its third refurbishment

    Research outputpeer-review


    From March 2015 until July 2016, the BR2 reactor underwent its third refurbishment operation. The reactor was returned to service successfully on July 19, 2016, according to the announced planning. In preparation of the restart, a number of recommissioning tests has been performed in order to validate the changes made to the reactor and its supporting system before returning to full-power operation. These tests included following items: hydraulic testing of the new reactor core and functional testing of the primary cooling circuit after revision of one of the main coolant pumps, nuclear measurements of the nuclear behavior of the new Beryllium matrix at zero power and low power and functional testing of the refurbished secondary cooling system. This paper describes the findings of the recommissioning tests of the BR2 reactor. After a successful restart, the reactor has run for 3 cycles in 2016, retaking its key position in the global supply of medical radio-isotopes. In the mean time, the experimental devices for the reactor are updated in order to meet the demands of the research community for the coming decade. The BR2 operating license has been reviewed in the framework of periodic safety reassessment, the results of which were reported to the safety authority in July 2016. With this review, the base is set for at least one more decade of operation of the BR2 reactor.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the RRFM2017 conference
    PublisherENS - European Nuclear Society
    Number of pages10
    StatePublished - 18 May 2017

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