The new concept Molten Salt Reactor is the only liquid-fuel reactor of the six Generation IV advanced nuclear energy systems. The liquid molten salt serves as the fuel and coolant simultaneously and causes one important feature: the delayed neutrons precursors are drifted by the fuel flow, which leads the spread of delayed neutrons distribution to non-core parts of the primary circuit, and it also can result in a reactivity variation depending on the flow condition of the fuel salt. Therefore, the neutronic and thermal-hydraulic characteristics of the Molten Salt Reactor is quite different from the conventional nuclear reactors using solid fissile materials, and no other reactor design theory and safety analysis methodologies can be used for reference. The neutronic model is derived based on the conservation of particle considering the flow effect of the fuel salt in the Molten Salt Reactor, while the thermal-hydraulic model uses the fundamental conservation laws: the mass, momentum and energy conservation equations. Then the neutronic and thermal-hydraulic calculations were coupled and the influences of inflow temperature and flow velocity on the reactor physical properties were obtained. The calculated results show that the flow effect on the distributions of thermal and fast neutron fluxes is very weak, as well as on the effective multiplication factor keff. While the flow effect on the distribution of delayed neutron precursors is much stronger. The inflow temperature influences the distribution of neutron flux and delayed neutron precursors slightly, and makes significant negative reactivity. Coupled calculation also reveals that the flow velocity of molten salt has little effect on the distribution of neutron fluxes in the steady state, but affects the delayed neutron precursors’ distribution significantly.
- Nuclear Engineering Division
Study on the Coupled Neutronic and Thermal-Hydraulic Characteristics of the New Concept Molten Salt Reactor
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Wang, P, & Qiu, S. "Study on the Coupled Neutronic and Thermal-Hydraulic Characteristics of the New Concept Molten Salt Reactor." Proceedings of the 17th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering. Volume 4: Codes, Standards, Licensing and Regulatory Issues; Student Paper Competition. Brussels, Belgium. July 12–16, 2009. pp. 673-679. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/ICONE17-75868
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