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Report No.

Characterization of high-temperature nuclear fuel-coolant interactions through X-ray visualization and image processing

Johnson, M.*; Journeau, C.*; Matsuba, Kenichi  ; Emura, Yuki; Kamiyama, Kenji 

High-resolution X-ray imaging was employed at the JAEA MELT facility to visualize a kilogram-scale interaction between a jet of high temperature molten stainless steel and sodium. A novel software, SPECTRA, has been developed for the quantitative characterization of jet quenching and fragmentation. Tracking and 3D reconstruction of the melt phase traversing the imaging window enabled the detection of 72% of the debris mass recovered post-experiment. The rebounding of melt fragments confirmed a solid outer crust at the melt-coolant interface, while a thermal fragmentation event induced rapid vapor expansion. Jet fragmentation is best explained by the vaporization of coolant entrained within the melt jet generating an internal over-pressure sufficient for fragmentation of the crust. Thermal fragmentation produced a bimodal debris size distribution of coarse jet shells and finer fragments.



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Category:Nuclear Science & Technology



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