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Journal Articles

Reduction of the source term of an assumed criticality accident in a fuel fabrication facility with solution system

Fukaya, Yuji; Goto, Minoru

Annals of Nuclear Energy, 164, p.108617_1 - 108617_6, 2021/12

 Times Cited Count:0

A reasonable source term of a hypothetical criticality accident for fuel fabrication facility with solution system has been proposed. The public exposure must not exceed the limitation of 5 mSv during an accident. Then, we proposed the reasonable source term of the first burst peak due to the hydrogen gas generation by radiation decomposition of water. With the criticality control system composed of the Criticality Accident Alarm System (CAAS) and soluble neutron absorber, safety is ensured by the reduced fission number. We confirmed the effect by environmental impact assessment during a criticality accident by using site condition of a fuel fabrication facility in Tokai-mura, Japan. As a result, the public exposure is reduced at a site boundary from 68 mSv to 0.6 mSv under the current regulatory guideline.

Journal Articles

A Pseudo-material method for graphite with arbitrary porosities in Monte Carlo criticality calculations

Okita, Shoichiro; Nagaya, Yasunobu; Fukaya, Yuji

Journal of Nuclear Science and Technology, 58(9), p.992 - 998, 2021/09

 Times Cited Count:0 Percentile:0.01(Nuclear Science & Technology)

Journal Articles

Manufacturability estimation on burnable poison mixed fuel for improving criticality safety of HTGR fuel fabrication

Hasegawa, Toshinari; Fukaya, Yuji; Ueta, Shohei; Goto, Minoru

Proceedings of 28th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering; Nuclear Energy the Future Zero Carbon Power (ICONE 28) (Internet), 5 Pages, 2021/08

Burnable poison (BP) credit concept has been proposed as a criticality safety measure for commercial high temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTGR) fuel fabrication, so we estimated manufacturability of the BP-mixed UO$$_2$$ kernel for the practical use of the concept. As a BP, boron, gadolinium, erbium, and hafnium are investigated. Boron mixed fuel kernels are fabricated by mixing boric acid powder with U$$_3$$O$$_8$$ powder. In the case of the other BPs, BP nitrate powder is mixed with U$$_3$$O$$_8$$ powder. In order to confirm that BP remain in the kernels after the heat treatment processes, thermodynamic equilibrium analysis was performed. Above 450$$^circ$$C, boron would melt and vaporize during the heat treatment processes, so it was found that the boron mixed fuel kernel fabrication is difficult. On the other hand, it was found that gadolinium, erbium, and hafnium would change to solid oxides that do not melt and vaporize even at 2000$$^circ$$C, and there was no problem with manufacturability of the BP-mixed fuel kernel.

Journal Articles

Feasibility study on burnable poison credit concept to HTGR fuel fabrication from core specification perspective

Fukaya, Yuji; Ueta, Shohei; Goto, Minoru; Ohashi, Hirofumi

Annals of Nuclear Energy, 151, p.107937_1 - 107937_9, 2021/02

 Times Cited Count:1 Percentile:0.01(Nuclear Science & Technology)

Feasibility study on Burnable Poison (BP) credit concept to High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor (HTGR) fuel fabrication has been performed. By mixing BP into fuel material in the first place of fuel fabrication, criticality safety is ensured in the all fuel fabrication process even with high enrichment fuel such as 14 wt% used in commercial HTGR. However, the poison effect also prevents the criticality even in the HTGR core, and it may shorten cycle length and achievable burn-up of the core. Therefore, the effect is evaluated by whole core burn-up calculation. As a BP, boron, gadolinium, erbium, and hafnium are investigated. As a result, it is found that boron and gadolinium suit this concept and the 14 wt% fuel can be fabricated in the plant fabricating 9.9 wt% High Temperature engineering Test Reactor (HTTR) fuel. With the boron and gadolinium, the commercial HTGR fuel can be fabricated with the safety measure as same as Light Water Reactor (LWR) fuel facility to treat the fuel with the enrichment up to 5 wt%. Especially, gadolinium is significantly suitable to this concept due to the dependency to spectrum, and more enhanced safety measure is feasible as well.

Journal Articles

Reactor physics experiment in a graphite-moderation system for HTGR

Fukaya, Yuji; Goto, Minoru; Nakagawa, Shigeaki; Nakajima, Kunihiro*; Takahashi, Kazuki*; Sakon, Atsushi*; Sano, Tadafumi*; Hashimoto, Kengo*

EPJ Web of Conferences, 247, p.09017_1 - 09017_8, 2021/02

The Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) started the Research and Development (R&D) to improve nuclear prediction techniques for High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactors (HTGRs). The objectives are to introduce a generalized bias factor method to avoid full mock-up experiment for the first commercial HTGR and to introduce reactor noise analysis to High Temperature Engineering Test Reactor (HTTR) experiment to observe subcriticality. To achieve the objectives, the reactor core of graphite-moderation system named B7/4"G2/8"p8EUNU+3/8"p38EU(1) was newly composed in the B-rack of Kyoto University Critical Assembly (KUCA). The core is composed of the fuel assembly, driver fuel assembly, graphite reflector, and polyethylene reflector. The fuel assembly is composed of enriched uranium plate, natural uranium plate and graphite plates to realize the average fuel enrichment of HTTR and it's spectrum. However, driver fuel assembly is necessary to achieve the criticality with the small-sized core. The core plays a role of the reference core of the bias factor method, and the reactor noise was measured to develop the noise analysis scheme. In this study, the overview of the criticality experiments is reported. The reactor configuration with graphite moderation system is rare case in the KUCA experiments, and this experiment is expected to contribute not only for an HTGR development but also for other types of a reactor in the graphite moderation system such as a molten salt reactor development.

Journal Articles

Reactor noise analysis for a graphite-moderated and -reflected core in KUCA

Sakon, Atsushi*; Nakajima, Kunihiro*; Takahashi, Kazuki*; Hohara, Shinya*; Sano, Tadafumi*; Fukaya, Yuji; Hashimoto, Kengo*

EPJ Web of Conferences, 247, p.09009_1 - 09009_8, 2021/02

In graphite-reflected thermal reactors, even a detector placed far from fuel region may detect a certain degree of the correlation amplitude. This is because mean free path of neutrons in graphite is longer than that in water or polyethylene. The objective of this study is experimentally to confirm a high flexibility of neutron detector placement in graphite reflector for reactor noise analysis. The present reactor noise analysis was carried out in a graphite-moderated and -reflected thermal core in Kyoto University Critical Assembly (KUCA). BF$$_{3}$$ proportional neutron counters (1" dia.) were placed in graphite reflector region, where the counters were separated by about 35cm and 30cm -thick graphite from the core, respectively. At a critical state and subcritical states, time-sequence signal data from these counters were acquired and analyzed by a fast Fourier transform (FFT) analyzer, to obtain power spectral density in frequency domain. The auto-power spectral density obtained from the counters far from the core contained a significant degree of correlated component. A least-squares fit of a familiar formula to the auto-power spectral density data was made to determine the prompt-neutron decay constant. The decay constant was 63.3$$pm$$14.5 [1/s] in critical state. The decay constant determined from the cross-power spectral density and coherence function data between the two counters also had a consistent value. It is confirmed that reactor noise analysis is possible using a detector placed at about 35cm far from the core, as we expected.

Journal Articles

High temperature gas-cooled reactors

Takeda, Tetsuaki*; Inagaki, Yoshiyuki; Aihara, Jun; Aoki, Takeshi; Fujiwara, Yusuke; Fukaya, Yuji; Goto, Minoru; Ho, H. Q.; Iigaki, Kazuhiko; Imai, Yoshiyuki; et al.

High Temperature Gas-Cooled Reactors; JSME Series in Thermal and Nuclear Power Generation, Vol.5, 464 Pages, 2021/02

As a general overview of the research and development of a High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor (HTGR) in JAEA, this book describes the achievements by the High Temperature Engineering Test Reactor (HTTR) on the designs, key component technologies such as fuel, reactor internals, high temperature components, etc., and operational experience such as rise-to-power tests, high temperature operation at 950$$^{circ}$$C, safety demonstration tests, etc. In addition, based on the knowledge of the HTTR, the development of designs and component technologies such as high performance fuel, helium gas turbine and hydrogen production by IS process for commercial HTGRs are described. These results are very useful for the future development of HTGRs. This book is published as one of a series of technical books on fossil fuel and nuclear energy systems by the Power Energy Systems Division of the Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers.

Journal Articles

Derivation of ideal power distribution to minimize the maximum kernel migration rate for nuclear design of pin-in-block type HTGR

Okita, Shoichiro; Fukaya, Yuji; Goto, Minoru

Journal of Nuclear Science and Technology, 58(1), p.9 - 16, 2021/01

 Times Cited Count:0 Percentile:0.01(Nuclear Science & Technology)

Suppressing the kernel migration rates, which depend on both the fuel temperature and the fuel temperature gradient, under normal operation condition is quite important from the viewpoint of the fuel integrity for High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactors. The presence of the ideal axial power distribution to minimize the maximum kernel migration rate allows us to improve efficiency of design work. Therefore, we propose a new method based on Lagrange multiplier method in consideration of thermohydraulic design in order to obtain the ideal axial power distribution to minimize the maximum kernel migration rate. For one of the existing conceptual designs performed by JAEA, the maximum kernel migration rate for the power distribution to minimize the maximum kernel migration rate proposed in this study is lower by approximately 10% than that for the power distribution as a conventional design target to minimize the maximum fuel temperature.

Journal Articles

Recent R&D of HTGR and requirement for nuclear data

Fukaya, Yuji; Goto, Minoru; Nakagawa, Shigeaki

JAEA-Conf 2020-001, p.27 - 32, 2020/12

Recently, HTGR attracts a particular attention due to the outstanding safety features especially after the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, and the R&D is significantly promoted. In this presentation, we introduce the R&D plan of HTGR and the activities related to reactor physics and nuclear data including an experiment by using KUCA. Furthermore, requirement for nuclear data from the HTGR design is discussed.

Journal Articles

Optimization of light water reactor high level waste disposal scenario in the situation of delayed reprocessing with existing and demonstrated technology

Fukaya, Yuji

Annals of Nuclear Energy, 144, p.107503_1 - 107503_7, 2020/09

 Times Cited Count:0 Percentile:0.01(Nuclear Science & Technology)

Disposal scenario of High Level Waste (HLW) of Light Water Reactor (LWR) have been optimized to reduce waste volume and repository footprint in geological disposal. The optimization was performed with existing and demonstrated technology in the situation where the reprocessing will be delayed. In general, the scenario with Partitioning and Transmutation (P&T) is optimized to minimize waste package number generated in the situation where the spent fuel will be reprocessed immediately with the minimum cooling time. With considering the delay of reprocessing, it is found that the more simplified and effective optimization with the high-waste-loading glass and cold crucible induction melter technologies and without partitioning. The optimized case can achieve significant reduction of number of waste package generation and the repository footprint to half of those of non-P&T case with 100 years cooling.

Journal Articles

Conceptual design study of a high performance commercial HTGR for early introduction

Fukaya, Yuji; Mizuta, Naoki; Goto, Minoru; Ohashi, Hirofumi; Yan, X.

Nuclear Engineering and Design, 361, p.110577_1 - 110577_6, 2020/05

 Times Cited Count:1 Percentile:39.17(Nuclear Science & Technology)

Conceptual design study of a commercial High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor (HTGR) for early introduction has been performed based on the cumulated experience in design, construction, and operation of the High Temperature engineering Test Reactor (HTTR) and design of the commercial Gas Turbine High Temperature Reactor 300 (GTHTR300). The power output is 165 MWt and the inlet and outlet coolant temperatures are 325$$^{circ}$$C and 750$$^{circ}$$C, respectively, to provide steam for industrial utilization. However, given a requirement for the reactor pressure vessel to be smaller even that of the 30 MWt HTTR, several challenging technical problems have to be dealt with to arrive in a high performance core design that provides extended fuel burnup, prolonged refueling period, improved fuel refueling scheme, improved fuel element and so on from the HTTR.

Journal Articles

Self-shielding effect of double heterogeneity for plutonium burner HTGR design

Fukaya, Yuji; Goto, Minoru; Ohashi, Hirofumi

Annals of Nuclear Energy, 138, p.107182_1 - 107182_9, 2020/04

 Times Cited Count:0 Percentile:0.01(Nuclear Science & Technology)

The investigation on self-shielding effect of double heterogeneity for plutonium burner High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor (HTGR) design has been performed. Plutonium burner HTGR designed in the previous study by using the advantage of double heterogeneity to control excess reactivity. In the present study, the mechanism of the self-shielding effect is elucidated by the analysis of burn-up calculation and reactivity decomposition based on exact perturbation theory. As a result, it is revealed that the characteristics of burn-up reactivity are determined by resonance cross section peak at 1 eV of $$^{240}$$Pu due to the surface term of background cross section, this is, the characteristics of neutron leakage from fuel lump and collision to a moderator. Moreover, significant spectrum shift is caused during the burn-up period, and it enhances reactivity worth of $$^{239}$$Pu and $$^{240}$$Pu in EOL.

Journal Articles

Reactor physics experiment in a graphite-moderation system for HTGR

Fukaya, Yuji; Goto, Minoru; Nakagawa, Shigeaki; Nakajima, Kunihiro*; Takahashi, Kazuki*; Sakon, Atsushi*; Sano, Tadafumi*; Hashimoto, Kengo*

Proceedings of International Conference on the Physics of Reactors; Transition To A Scalable Nuclear Future (PHYSOR 2020) (USB Flash Drive), 8 Pages, 2020/03

The Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) started the Research and Development (R&D) to improve nuclear prediction techniques for High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactors (HTGRs). The objectives are to introduce a generalized bias factor method to avoid full mock-up experiment for the first commercial HTGR and to introduce reactor noise analysis to High Temperature Engineering Test Reactor (HTTR) experiment to observe subcriticality. To achieve the objectives, the reactor core of graphite-moderation system named B7/4"G2/8"p8EUNU+3/8"p38EU(1) was newly composed in the B-rack of Kyoto University Critical Assembly (KUCA). The core is composed of the fuel assembly, driver fuel assembly, graphite reflector, and polyethylene reflector. The fuel assembly is composed of enriched uranium plate, natural uranium plate and graphite plates to realize the average fuel enrichment of HTTR and it's spectrum. However, driver fuel assembly is necessary to achieve the criticality with the small-sized core. The core plays a role of the reference core of the bias factor method, and the reactor noise was measured to develop the noise analysis scheme. In this study, the overview of the criticality experiments is reported. The reactor configuration with graphite moderation system is rare case in the KUCA experiments, and this experiment is expected to contribute not only for an HTGR development but also for other types of a reactor in the graphite moderation system such as a molten salt reactor development.

Journal Articles

Study on plutonium burner high temperature gas-cooled reactor in Japan; Introduction scenario, reactor safety and fabrication tests of the 3S-TRISO fuel

Ueta, Shohei; Mizuta, Naoki; Fukaya, Yuji; Goto, Minoru; Tachibana, Yukio; Honda, Masaki*; Saiki, Yohei*; Takahashi, Masashi*; Ohira, Koichi*; Nakano, Masaaki*; et al.

Nuclear Engineering and Design, 357, p.110419_1 - 110419_10, 2020/02

 Times Cited Count:1 Percentile:39.17(Nuclear Science & Technology)

The concept of a plutonium (Pu) burner HTGR is proposed to incarnate highly-effective Pu utilization by its inherent safety features. The security and safety fuel (3S-TRISO fuel) employs the coated fuel particle with a fuel kernel made of plutonium dioxide (PuO$$_{2}$$) and yttria stabilized zirconia (YSZ) as an inert matrix. This paper presents feasibility study of Pu burner HTGR and R&D on the 3S-TRISO fuel.

Journal Articles

Reactor physics experiment in graphite moderation system for HTGR, 1

Fukaya, Yuji; Nakagawa, Shigeaki; Goto, Minoru; Ishitsuka, Etsuo; Kawakami, Satoru; Uesaka, Takahiro; Morita, Keisuke; Sano, Tadafumi*

KURNS Progress Report 2018, P. 148, 2019/08

The Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) started the Research and Development (R&D) to improve nuclear prediction techniques for High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactors (HTGRs). The objectives are to introduce generalized bias factor method to avoid full mock-up experiment for the first commercial HTGR and to introduce reactor noise analysis to High Temperature Engineering Test Reactor (HTTR) experiment. To achieve the objectives, the reactor core of graphite moderation system named B7/4"G2/8"p8EUNU+3/8"p38EU(1) was newly composed in the B-rack of Kyoto University Critical Assembly (KUCA). The core plays a role of the reference core of the bias factor method, and the reactor noise was measured to develop the noise analysis scheme. In addition, training of operator of HTTR was also performed during the experiments.

Journal Articles

Study on levelizing electricity generation cost for nuclear power generation between generations

Fukaya, Yuji

Meruko Kanri Kaikei Kenkyu, (11-2), p.45 - 62, 2019/05

Evaluation of electricity generation cost is important to make energy policy. Levelizing technique for cost and benefit, i.e. discounting technique, plays an important role in the evaluation especially for Nuclear Power Generation (NPG) because the activity related to power generation have been performed beyond generations. There are many arguments for the discounting technique for a long term, e.g. the cost of climate change. However, those are few for the electricity generation cost for NPG. Therefore, I discuss the discounting technique by referring the history of cost evaluation for NPG and the recent discussion of backend problem. Moreover, gamma discounting, which attracts a particular interest because of the gradual decrees of effective discounting rate, and two-good model are attempted and discussed.

Journal Articles

Uranium-based TRU multi-recycling with thermal neutron HTGR to reduce environmental burden and threat of nuclear proliferation

Fukaya, Yuji; Goto, Minoru; Ohashi, Hirofumi; Yan, X.; Nishihara, Tetsuo; Tsubata, Yasuhiro; Matsumura, Tatsuro

Journal of Nuclear Science and Technology, 55(11), p.1275 - 1290, 2018/11

 Times Cited Count:0 Percentile:0.01(Nuclear Science & Technology)

To reduce environmental burden and thread of nuclear proliferation, multi-recycling fuel cycle with High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor (HTGR) has been investigated. Those problems are solved by incinerating TRans Uranium (TRU) nuclides, which is composed of plutonium and Minor Actinoide (MA), and there is concept to realize TRU incineration by multi-recycling with Fast Breeder Reactor (FBR). In this study, multi-recycling is realized even with thermal reactor by feeding fissile uranium from outside of the fuel cycle instead of breeding fissile nuclide. In this fuel cycle, recovered uranium by reprocessing and natural uranium are enriched and mixed with recovered TRU by reprocessing and partitioning to fabricate fresh fuels. The fuel cycle was designed for a Gas Turbine High Temperature Reactor (GTHTR300), whose thermal power is 600 MW, including conceptual design of uranium enrichment facility. Reprocessing is assumed as existing Plutonium Uranium Redox EXtraction (PUREX) with four-group partitioning technology. As a result, it was found that the TRU nuclides excluding neptunium can be recycled by the proposed cycle. The duration of potential toxicity decaying to natural uranium level can be reduced to approximately 300 years, and the footprint of repository for High Level Waste (HLW) can be reduced by 99.7% compared with GTHTR300 using existing reprocessing and disposal technology. Suppress plutonium is not generated from this cycle. Moreover, incineration of TRU from Light Water Reactor (LWR) cycle can be performed in this cycle.

Journal Articles

Study on Pu-burner high temperature gas-cooled reactor in Japan; Introduction scenario

Fukaya, Yuji; Goto, Minoru; Ueta, Shohei; Tachibana, Yukio; Okamoto, Koji*

Proceedings of 9th International Topical Meeting on High Temperature Reactor Technology (HTR 2018) (USB Flash Drive), 9 Pages, 2018/10

The research on introduction scenarios of Pu-burner High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor (HTGR) of Japan has been performed based on the "Long-term Energy Supply and Demand Outlook" released by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) of Japan in 2015. In the perspective, the electricity generation capacity of nuclear power generation reduces from 50 GWe (peak around 2010) to 30 GWe in 2030. To maintain the capacity, light water reactors (LWRs) should be introduced from 2025 to 2030. After 2030, HTGRs, which are superior to LWRs from the viewpoint of safety and economy, will be introduced to fill the capacity and incinerate plutonium. We assumed introduction of U fueled HTGR as well. The Pu-burner reactor will be introduced with the priority to incinerate separated plutonium by reprocessing. Moreover, we also evaluated hydrogen generation and its effect on CO$$_{2}$$ reduction. As a result, effective plutonium incineration and CO$$_{2}$$ reduction effect are confirmed.

Journal Articles

Conceptual design study of a high performance commercial HTGR

Fukaya, Yuji; Mizuta, Naoki; Goto, Minoru; Ohashi, Hirofumi; Yan, X.

Proceedings of 9th International Topical Meeting on High Temperature Reactor Technology (HTR 2018) (USB Flash Drive), 7 Pages, 2018/10

Conceptual design study of a high performance commercial HTGR has been performed at target output of 165MWt. Requirements for the HTGR are small-sized vessel for transportation, durability of vessel to irradiation damage, fuel reloading scheme to shorten the duration of reloading, low pressure drop fuel element, a small number of fuel enrichments, and so on. To satisfy the requirement, we investigated the core configuration, shielding and reflector configuration, fuel reloading scheme. As a result, we completed the design with the vessel diameter of 4.5m, which can be transported by any means, such as, by load, rail, ship, and air plane, and high load factor over 90%.

Journal Articles

Conceptual plant system design study of an experimental HTGR upgraded from HTTR

Ohashi, Hirofumi; Goto, Minoru; Ueta, Shohei; Sato, Hiroyuki; Fukaya, Yuji; Kasahara, Seiji; Sasaki, Koei; Mizuta, Naoki; Yan, X.; Aoki, Takeshi*

Proceedings of 9th International Topical Meeting on High Temperature Reactor Technology (HTR 2018) (USB Flash Drive), 6 Pages, 2018/10

Conceptual design study of an experimental HTGR is performed to upgrade the plant system from Japanese High Temperature engineering Test Reactor (HTTR) to a commercial HTGR. Safety systems of HTTR are upgraded to demonstrate the commercial HTGR concept, such as a passive reactor cavity cooling system, a confinement, etc. An intermediate heat exchanger (IHX) is replaced by a steam generator (SG) for a process heat supply to demonstrate the technology for a commercial use. This paper describes the conceptual design study results of the plant system of the experimental HTGR.

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