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Reduced Enrichment for Research and Test Reactors
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Abstracts and Available Papers Presented at the
2002 International RERTR Meeting

NEUTRONIC PERFORMANCE OF THE WWR-M RESEARCH REACTOR IN UKRAINE

R. B. Pond, N.A. Hanan and J. E. Matos

RERTR Program
Argonne National Laboratory
Argonne, Illinois

Y. Mahlers and A. Dyakov

Kiev Institute for Nuclear Research
Kiev, Ukraine

ABSTRACT

The 10 MW, WWR-M research reactor of the Kiev Institute for Nuclear Research is jointly studied with the Argonne National Laboratory to examine the feasibility of conversion from HEU (36%) to LEU (19.75%) fuel. A potential core configuration was chosen for comparison of analytical results with HEU fuel and candidate replacement LEU fuels. Core reactivity, fuel assembly power, experiment flux, fuel-cycle length, the number of fuel assemblies consumed per year, and shutdown margins are compared using HEU and LEU fuels.

The reactor currently uses HEU (36%) WWR-M2 fuel assemblies (3 tubes, UO2-Al fuel meat with 1.1 gU/cm3 and 37.0 g 235U). Candidate LEU replacement fuel assemblies, which would result in the same fuel cycle length and the same annual fuel consumption as the HEU (36%) fuel are: LEU WWR-M2 (3 tubes, UO2-Al fuel meat with 2.3 gU/cm3 and 38.3 g 235U) and LEU WWR-MR (37 pins, U9Mo-Al fuel meat with 2.4 gU/cm3 and 38.1 g 235U).

Five LEU WWR-M2 fuel assemblies with 41.7 g 235U per assembly, UO2-Al fuel meat with 2.5 gU/cm3, and a fueled height of 50 cm have completed irradiation testing in the WWR-M reactor at the Petersburg Nuclear Physics Institute in Gatchina to an average 235U burnup of over 70%. This LEU fuel is considered to be qualified for conversion of the WWR-M reactor in Kiev and other research reactors using HEU (36%) WWR-M2 fuel assemblies. For reactors using assemblies with a fueled height of 60 cm, the 235U content per assembly would be 50 g with the same fuel meat composition as the fuel assemblies that were tested in Gatchina.

Two 37-pin LEU test assemblies one with UO2-Al fuel meat and about 48 g 235U and the other with U9Mo-Al fuel meat and about 96 g 235U are scheduled to begin irradiation testing in the WWR-M reactor in Gatchina before the end of 2002. If these tests (lasting about two years) are successful, LEU pin-type fuel assemblies with up to 96 g 235U would be candidate fuels for LEU conversion of the WWR-M reactor in Kiev and other research reactors using WWR-M2 fuel assemblies.


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Technology Development - 362
Argonne National Laboratory
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Last modified on July 29, 2008 11:33 +0200