As part of the planning activities for a new 1400 MW nuclear power station with a pressurized water reactor, a new hydraulic system had to be designed for the reactor coolant pumps (RCPs). Starting from the design principles and the main dimensions of an existing pump a new diffuser and impeller had to be designed for the specified requirements which provided a specific speed of almost ns = 100 rpm (≈ 5100 in US units). The authors describe how impeller and diffuser of the hydraulic system were gradually optimized with the aid of computational fluid dynamics (CFD). The system had to meet demanding requirements, thus it was decided to build a model pump (on a scale ≈ 1:2) to demonstrate that the new pump would satisfy the specified duty parameters. Based on the spectra of tests performed on the model pump the authors discuss the resulting pump characteristics (Q, H, η, NPSH).

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