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Critical assembly simulator with the one-point reactor kinetics (CASIM)

Tonoike, Kotaro ; Uchiyama, Gunzo 

A simulator has been developed to help, in a lecture meeting for instance, public understanding of fission chain reactions or basic nuclear reactor operations. The simulator has the simple one-point reactor kinetics model with no reactivity feedback, which, therefore, models a critical assembly operated with very low power in a room temperature, instead of a power reactor or a research reactor whose core temperature is raised by the energy of fission chain reaction. Thus, the simulator has been named as "CASIM: Critical Assembly SIMulator". CASIM has only two operation items: the neutron source insertion/extraction, and the reactivity control of one kind. It has indications of the neutron source position and the neutron level (the power) in linear and logarithmic scales. No reactor period meter is equipped. The delayed neutron fraction $$beta$$, as a parameter of the simulated kinetics, is selectable from 0.74% and 0.37%. The former is for a uranium fuel and the latter is for a plutonium fuel. Hypothetical situations such as $$beta$$=0.19% or "Delayed Neutron: None" are also options to demonstrate the extreme conditions manually uncontrollable. CASIM runs on a standard Windows personal computer and has been used in lecture meetings such as a seminar held in the Kansai Photon Science Institute.

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