Working Paper Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

Evaluating Reactivity Control Options for a ChloriDe-salt Based Molten Salt Zero Power Reactor

Version 1 : Received: 22 June 2021 / Approved: 22 June 2021 / Online: 22 June 2021 (14:37:04 CEST)

How to cite: Merk, B.; Detkina, A.; Atkinson, S.; Litskevich, D.; Cartland-Glover, G. Evaluating Reactivity Control Options for a ChloriDe-salt Based Molten Salt Zero Power Reactor. Preprints 2021, 2021060552 Merk, B.; Detkina, A.; Atkinson, S.; Litskevich, D.; Cartland-Glover, G. Evaluating Reactivity Control Options for a ChloriDe-salt Based Molten Salt Zero Power Reactor. Preprints 2021, 2021060552

Abstract

Molten salt reactors have gained substantial interest in the last years due to their flexibility and their potential for simplified closed fuel cycle operation for massive net-zero energy production. However, a zero-power reactor experiment will be an essential first step into the process of delivering this technology. The topic of the control and shut down for a zero power reactor is for the first time introduced through a literature review and the reduction of the control approaches to a limited number of basic functions with different variations. In the following, the requirements for the control and shutdown system for a reactor experiment are formulated, and based on these assessments, an approach for the shutdown – splitting the lower part of the core with reflector, and an approach for the control – a vertically movable radial reflector are proposed. Both systems will be usable for a zero-power system with a liquid as well as with as a solid core and even more importantly, both systems somehow work on the integral system level without disturbing the central part of the core which will be the essential area for the experimental measurements. Both approaches have been investigated as a singular system as well as their interactions with one another and the sensitivity of the control system. The study has demonstrated that both proposed systems are able to deliver the required characteristics with sufficient shutdown margin and a sufficiently wide control span. The interaction of the system has been shown to be manageable and the sensitivity is on a very good level. The multi-group Monte-Carlo approach has been cross evaluated by a continuous energy test leading to good results, but they also demonstrate that there is room for improvement.

Subject Areas

Nuclear; Nuclear Reactors; Reactor Physics; Nuclear Experiments; Zero-Power Reactors; Modelling & Simulation; Molten Salt Reactors

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