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Report No.
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Calculation of the estimated criticality lower limit multiplication factor of MOX fuel systems based on the evaluation of calculation errors dependent on plutonium-240 isotopic fraction

Sato, Shohei; Okuno, Hiroshi

The estimated criticality lower limit multiplication factor (hereafter, ECLLMF) is the upper limit of the neutron multiplication factor where the system may be judged subcritical through the calculation results of the same criticality calculation system applied to analogous fuel systems to be evaluated. Aiming to establish an effective method to find the rational ECLLMF of mixed uranium and plutonium oxide (MOX) fuel systems, this report investigated the classification of the critical experiments for the statistical processing, and evaluated the calculation errors with considering the dependence on $$^{240}$$Pu isotopic fraction within the classified experiments. In this evaluation, the criticality calculation code MVP and the evaluated nuclear data library JENDL-3.3 library were utilized, and the criticality experiments with MOX fuels registered in the international criticality safety benchmark evaluation project (ICSBEP) handbook were adopted. It was found that the dependency of the benchmark calculation results on the $$^{240}$$Pu isotopic fraction was enhanced by introducing a new fuel class: "dual heterogeneous fuel systems." As a result of this classification and error evaluation, it was confirmed that the calculated values of all the ECLLMFs were below the benchmark calculation results, and that the value of the ECLLMF was high compared with that obtained with the traditional method.

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