Fast Reactor Safety by John Graham (Eds.)

By John Graham (Eds.)

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6 3-10 700 3 6 1 Safety Evaluation Methods 30 Thus the final sodium void coefficient is a matter of balance among these effects and the final value can be positive or negative. Because the effects are position dependent, the leakage being the dominating effect on the outer edges of the core and the moderation effect dominating at the core center, the sodium void coefficient is also very position dependent. 13 shows the spatial variation of the sodium void coefficient and its components as a function of the core radius.

The effects can be summarized in terms of the following. (a) Absorption variation. The sodium removal reduces nonproductive absorption and relatively more neutrons are productively absorbed in the fuel. This is a positive effect. (b) Leakage changes. As the diffusion length increases it leads to a greater leakage and gives a negative contribution to the coefficient. (c) Moderation changes. There is less moderation and thus the fractional loss in energy per collision (the energy decrement) reduces and so the spectrum hardens.

The mass flow can oscillate between them, resulting in different two-phase pressure drops and voidages. It can only occur for exit qualities greater than 20-30%. + Sodium-cooled reactor systems are not subject to these types of instability and, indeed, a sodium-cooled system does appear to have excellent stability. However during accident conditions, unstable conditions might suddenly result. 4 will refer to sodium chugging after assembly failure, which is a form of static instability. Stability studies are required to demonstrate that the particular system will be stable under normal and abnormal conditions.

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