In-Vessel Retention (IVR) is one of the most important severe accident mitigation strategies of the third generation passive Nuclear Power Plants (NPP). It is intended to demonstrate that in the case of a core melt, the structural integrity of the Reactor Pressure Vessel (RPV) is assured such that there is no leakage of radioactive debris from the RPV. This paper studied the IVR issue using Finite Element Analyses (FEA). Firstly, the tension and creep testing for the SA-508 Gr.3 Cl.1 material in the temperature range of 25°C to 1000°C were performed. Secondly, a FEA model of the RPV lower head was built. Based on the assumption of ideally elastic-plastic material properties derived from the tension testing data, limit analyses were performed under both the thermal and the thermal plus pressure loading conditions where the load bearing capacity was investigated by tracking the propagation of plastic region as a function of pressure increment. Finally, the ideal elastic-plastic material properties incorporating the creep effect are developed from the 100hr isochronous stress-strain curves, limit analyses are carried out as the second step above. The allowable pressures at 0 hr and 100 hr are obtained. This research provides an alternative approach for the structural integrity evaluation for RPV under IVR condition.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.