A subchannel void sensor (SCVS) was developed to measure the cross-sectional distribution of a void fraction in a 5×5 heated rod bundle with o.d. 10 mm and heated length 2000 mm, and applied in a boiling two-phase flow experiment under the atmospheric conditions assumed in an accident and spent fuel pool. The SCVS comprises 6-wire by 6-wire and 5-rod by 5-rod electrodes. Wire electrodes 0.2 mm in diameter are arranged in latticed patterns between the rod bundle, while a conductance value in a region near one wire and another gives a local void fraction in the central-subchannel region. 32 points (= 6×6−4) of the local void fraction can be obtained as a cross-sectional distribution. In addition, a local void fraction near the rod surface can be estimated by a conductance value in a region near one wire and one rod using the simulated fuel rods as rod electrodes, which allows 100 additional points (=4×25) of the local void fraction to be acquired. The devised sensors are installed at five height levels to acquire two-phase flow dynamics in an axial direction. A pair of SCVS is mounted at each level and placed 30 mm apart to estimate the one-dimensional phasic velocity distribution based on the cross-correlation analysis of both layers. The time resolution of void measurement exceeds 800 frames (cross-sections) per second. The heated rod bundle has an axially and radially uniform power profile, and eight pairs of sheath thermocouples are embedded on the heated rod to monitor its surface temperature distribution. The boiling two-phase flow experiment, which simulated a boil-off process, was conducted with the devised SCVS and experimental data was acquired under various experimental conditions, such as inlet-flow velocity, rod-bundle power and inlet subcooling. The experimental results exhibited axial and radial distribution of two-phase flow structures, i.e. void-fraction and phasic-velocity distributions quantitatively.

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