The general context of this article is related to the dismantling of the damaged reactors of Fukushima Dai-ichi and, more specifically, to the implementation of the laser cutting technique for the fuel debris retrieval. IRSN is involved in a project led by ONET Technologies and in partnership with CEA, to bring relevant elements in order to analyze the risks induced by the dispersion of aerosols released by the dismantling operations.

During the laser cutting operations in air or underwater conditions, particles will be produced, involving a potential risk of dispersion into the environment. Hence, in order to prevent this situation, their collection is one of the safety key issues in the in-situ dismantling actions. For that, IRSN performed CFD simulations of aerosol scavenging by a spray to evaluate the collection efficiency by this technique.

These simulations, conducted with the ANSYS CFX code, use an Eulerian method for the continuous phase, and a Lagrangian method for the spray for which a collection model detailed by Plumecocq [1] or Marchand [2] was implemented. Aerosols are modelled by a DQMOM population balance implemented by Gelain et al. [3] (already used for recent simulations in the same context), and enriched with a deposition model developed by Nerisson et al. [4].

At first, CFD simulations were performed with the geometry of the IRSN TOSQAN facility [5], comparatively to experimental results presented in a previous paper [6]. This step enables the validation of the collection model implementation and to study the sensitivity to the aerosol size.

Then, CFD simulations were conducted with the geometry of the pedestal of Fukushima Dai-ichi reactors, to be more representative of a realistic case. For this configuration, sensitivity studies are described, highlighting both the influence of a multispray and of thermal-hydraulic conditions (temperature) on aerosol scavenging efficiency.

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