It is already 10 years since the (European) HTR Technology Network (HTR-TN) launched a programme for the development of HTR Technology, which expanded through 3 successive Euratom Framework Programmes, with many coordinated projects in line with the strategy of the Network. Widely relying in the beginning on the legacy of the former European HTR developments (DRAGON, AVR, THTR...) that it contributed to safeguard, this programme led to advances in HTR/VHTR technologies and produced significant results, which can benefit to the international HTR community through the Euratom involvement in the Generation IV International Forum (GIF). The main achievements of the European programme performed in complement to national efforts in Europe and already taking into consideration the complementarity with contributions of other GIF partners are presented: they concern the validation of computer codes (reactor physics, system transient analysis from normal operation to air ingress accident and fuel performance in normal and accident conditions), materials (metallic materials for the vessel, the direct cycle turbines and the intermediate heat exchanger, graphite...), component development, fuel manufacturing and irradiation behaviour and specific HTR waste management (irradiated fuel and graphite). Key experiments have been performed or are still ongoing, like irradiation of graphite to high fluence, fuel material irradiation (PYCASSO experiment), high burn-up irradiated fuel PIE, safety test and isotopic analysis, IHX mock-up thermo-hydraulic test in helium atmosphere, air ingress experiment for a block type core, etc. Now HTR-TN partners consider that it is time for Europe to go a step forward towards industrial demonstration. In line with the orientations of the “Strategic Energy Technology Plan (SET-Plan)” recently issued by the European Commission, which promotes a strategy for the deployment of low carbon energy technologies and mentions Generation IV nuclear systems as one of the key contributors to this strategy, HTR-TN proposes to launch a programme for extending the contribution of nuclear energy to industrial process heat applications addressing jointly 1) The development of a flexible HTR able to be coupled to many different process heat and cogeneration applications with very versatile requirements 2) The development of coupling technologies with industrial processes 3) The possible adaptations of process heat applications which might be needed for coupling with a HTR and 4) The integration and optimisation of the whole coupled system. As a preliminary step for this ambitious programme, HTR-TN endeavours presently to create a strategic partnership between nuclear industry and R&D and process heat user industries.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.