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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

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

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:100(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:100(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. L.

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

 Times Cited Count:1 Percentile:24.17(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:100(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:24.17(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:100(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.

Journal Articles

Conceptual study of an experimental HTGR upgraded from HTTR

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

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

The HTTR (High Temperature engineering Test Reactor) constructed at JAEA-Oarai R&D center is a block-type experimental HTGR (High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor) with 30 MW thermal power. It attained the first criticality at 1998 and has yielded very useful data for future HTGR design. Although the HTTR was designed very conservatively because the HTTR is the first HTGR for Japan, future HTGRs can be designed with a reasonable conservativeness based on the HTTR data. Additionally, it is possible to enhance the performance of the reactor core by improving the design and introducing new technologies. This paper describes a concept of an experimental HTGR that is upgraded from the HTTR by the reasonable conservativeness, the design improvement and the new technology introduction.

Journal Articles

Study on Pu-burner high temperature gas-cooled reactor in Japan; Design study of fuel and reactor core

Goto, Minoru; Aihara, Jun; Inaba, Yoshitomo; Ueta, Shohei; Fukaya, Yuji; Okamoto, Koji*

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

JAEA has conducted design studies of a Pu-burner HTGR. The Pu-burner HTGR incinerates Pu by fission, and hence a high burn-up is required for the efficient incineration. In the fuel design, a thin ZrC layer, which acts as an oxygen getter and suppresses the internal pressure, was coated on the fuel kernel to prevent the CFP failure at the high burn-up. A stress analysis of the SiC layer, which acts as a pressure vessel for the CFP, was performed for with consideration of the depression effect due to the ZrC layer. As a result, the CFP failure fraction at high burn-up of 500 GWd/t satisfied the target value. In the reactor core design, an axial fuel shuffling was employed to attain the high burn-up, and the nuclear burn-up calculations with the whole core model and the fuel temperature calculations were performed. As a result, the nuclear characteristics, which are the shutdown margin and the temperature coefficient of reactivity, and the fuel temperature satisfied their target values.

Journal Articles

Study on Pu-burner high temperature gas-cooled reactor in Japan; Test and characterization for ZrC coating

Ueta, Shohei; Aihara, Jun; Mizuta, Naoki; Goto, Minoru; Fukaya, Yuji; Tachibana, Yukio; Okamoto, Koji*

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

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. Especially, a zirconium carbide (ZrC) coating is one of key technologies of the 3S-TRISO, which performs as an oxygen getter to reduce the fuel failure due to internal pressure during the irradiation. R&Ds on ZrC coating directly on the dummy CeO$$_{2}$$-YSZ kernel have been carried in the Japanese fiscal year 2017. As results of ZrC coating tests by the bromide chemical vapor deposition process, stoichiometric ZrC coatings with 3 - 18 microns of thicknesses were obtained with 0.1 kg of particle loading weight.

JAEA Reports

Research on demand of HTGR for investigation of introduction scenario and investigation on heat balance of HTGR

Fukaya, Yuji; Kasahara, Seiji; Mizuta, Naoki; Inaba, Yoshitomo; Shibata, Taiju; Nishihara, Tetsuo

JAEA-Research 2018-004, 38 Pages, 2018/06

JAEA-Research-2018-004.pdf:1.81MB

The demand of HTGR to investigate its introduction scenario and heat balance of HTGR have been researched. First, previous studies of HTGR demand were researched. Next, heat balance of GTHTR300, a commercial scale HTGR design, and its characteristics were researched. By using this information, installation number of HTGR to suit for demand in Japan are evaluated. In addition, heat balance evaluation code was developed in this study.

Journal Articles

Optimization of disposal method and scenario to reduce high level waste volume and repository footprint for HTGR

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

Annals of Nuclear Energy, 116, p.224 - 234, 2018/06

 Times Cited Count:1 Percentile:75.54(Nuclear Science & Technology)

Optimization of disposal method and scenario to reduce volume of High Level Waste (HLW) and the footprint in a geological repository for High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor (HTGR) has been performed. It was found that HTGR has great advantages to reducing HLW volume and its footprint, which are high burn-up, high thermal efficiency and pin-in-block type fuel, compared with those of LWR and has potential to reduce those more in the previous study. In this study, the scenario is optimized, and the geological repository layout is designed with the horizontal emplacement based on the KBS-3H concept instead of the vertical emplacement based on KBS-3V concept employed in the previous study. As a result, for direct disposal, the repository footprint can be reduced by 20 % by employing the horizontal without change of the scenario. By extending 40 years for cooling time before disposal, the footprint can be reduced by 50 %. For disposal with reprocessing, the number of canister generation can be reduced by 20 % by extending cooling time of 1.5 years between the discharge and reprocessing. The footprint per electricity generation can be reduced by 80 % by extending 40 years before disposal. Moreover, by employing four-group partitioning technology without transmutation, the footprint can be reduced by 90 % with cooling time of 150 years.

Journal Articles

Safety and economics of uranium utilization for nuclear power generation

Fukaya, Yuji

Uranium; Safety, Resources, Separation and Thermodynamic Calculation, p.22 - 48, 2018/05

Safety and economics of uranium utilization for nuclear power generation were investigated and discussed. In order to sustain energy supply with nuclear power generation, uranium resources should be abundant. From the viewpoint of depletion of the resources, FBR, which is breeder reactor of plutonium, has been developed, but that has been not diffused as a commercial reactor yet. Instead of obtaining inexhaustible resources by breeding plutonium, it is known that the inherent safety feature becomes weak in the fast neutron spectrum. As the result of the investigation, it is confirmed with concrete FBR designs that the inherent safety feature and breeding ability are related to the transactions. The amount of uranium resources and electricity generation cost with the resources were investigated. It is concluded that the semi-permanently sustainable energy supply can be established with reasonable cost by using seawater uranium. In addition, the significance of P&T, which is one of the advantages of FBR, was also discussed from the viewpoint of environmental burden from radioactive waste.

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