Reactivity Performances of Two Prototypes HEU Fuel Elements with Cadmium Wires Irradiated in the BR2 Reactor

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Abstract

Two prototypes HEU fuel elements with cadmium wires have been manufactured and irradiated during five BR2 operation cycles in 2011 under the BR2 Conversion Project. The purpose of these irradiations was to investigate the effect of the replacement of the standard burnable absorbers (B4C and Sm2O3) in the fuel meat by cadmium wires located in the grooves of the aluminium stiffeners of a standard BR2 fuel element. A detailed MCNPX 2.7 geometry and burn-up model has been developed and implemented for evaluation of the performance graph of the reactivity evolution vs. mean U5 burn-up in the HEU-Cd elements. A Nuclear Measurement Program for the determination of the reactivity effect of the HEU-Cd fuel elements relatively to a standard fresh BR2 HEU fuel element has been conducted in the shutdown of each operation cycle. MCNPX predictions for the reactivity effects of fresh as well as for burnt HEU-Cd fuel elements were in a good agreement with the measurements. The overall conclusion is that the two cadmium-wired fuel elements behaved as expected. Therefore it can be concluded that the Cd wires are qualified as another type of burnable absorber for the BR2 driver fuel.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRrfm 2012
Place of PublicationBrussels, Belgium
Publication statusPublished - 18 Mar 2012
Event2012 - RRFM - European Research Reactor Conference - European Nculear Society, Prague, Czech Republic
Duration: 18 Mar 201222 Mar 2012

Conference

Conference2012 - RRFM - European Research Reactor Conference
Country/TerritoryCzech Republic
CityPrague
Period2012-03-182012-03-22

Keywords

  • Cadmium Wires, MCNPX

ID: 364766