An updated mixing model is developed for application to system codes used for predicting severe accident-induced failures of steam generator (SG) U-tubes in a pressurized-water reactor. Computational fluid dynamics is used to predict the natural circulation flows between a simplified reactor vessel and the primary side of an SG during a hypothesized severe accident scenario. The results from this analysis are used to extend earlier experimental results and predictions. These new predictions benefit from the inclusion of the entire natural circulation loop between the reactor vessel upper plenum and the SG. Tube leakage and mass flow into the pressurizer surge line also are considered. The predictions are utilized as a numerical experiment to improve the basis for simplified models applied in one-dimensional system codes that are used during the prediction of severe accident natural circulation flows. An updated inlet plenum mixing model is proposed that accounts for mixing in the hot leg as well as the inlet plenum region. The new model is consistent with the predicted behavior and can account for flow into a side-mounted pressurizer surge line if present. Sensitivity studies demonstrate the applicability of the approach over a range of conditions. The predictions are most sensitive to changes in the SG secondary side temperatures or heat-transfer rates at the SG tubes. Grid independence is demonstrated through comparisons with previous models and by increasing the number of cells in the model. This work supports the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) studies of SG tube integrity under severe accident conditions.

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