The reactor core is a complex system involving the reactor physics, thermal hydraulics and many other aspects. That means the distribution of the core power largely determines the profile of the thermal parameters, meanwhile the local thermal-hydraulics condition will in turn affect the neutronics calculation by moderator temperature effect and Doppler effects. Issues coupling the thermal-hydraulics with neutronics of nuclear plants still challenge the design, safety and the operation of LWR few years ago. Fortunately, the recent availability of powerful computer and computational techniques has enlarged the capabilities of making more realistic simulations of complex phenomena in NPPs.
The current study deals with the development of an integrated thermal-hydraulics/neutronics model for Qinshan phase II NPP project reactor for the analysis of specific plant transients in which the neutronic response of the core is important, application of RELAP5-HD making use of the Helios code to derive the macroscopic cross-sections. Based on the coupled model, the steady state calculation and the transient simulation, involving the abnormal operation mode with asymmetrical coolant flux and temperature on the inlet of reactor, have been performed. The results show that the values obtained from coupled code RELAP5-HD calculation are in good agreement with the available experimental data, and the calculated accident parameters curves can predict all major trends of the transient. Steady state and transient condition calculation results are in accordance with the theoretical analysis from the aspect of coupled thermal-hydraulics/neutronics, this demonstrated a successful best estimate coupled RELAP5-HD model of Qinshan phase II NPP reactor has been developed, and the established model will provide a good foundation for the further analysis of the primary loop. It also can be concluded that the more accurate CFD method coupling three dimensional neutron kinetics code based on neutron diffusion method are necessary for steady-state calculation and analysis of transient/accident conditions when asymmetrical processes take place in the core. It is worth mentioning that RELAP5-HD code has already programmed the human-machine interface and the interface for coupling with other code, hence RELAP5-HD code has a broad application prospect in PWRs safety analysis.