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Journal Articles

Nuclear and thermal feasibility of lithium-loaded high temperature gas-cooled reactor for tritium production for fusion reactors

Goto, Minoru; Okumura, Keisuke; Nakagawa, Shigeaki; Inaba, Yoshitomo; Matsuura, Hideaki*; Nakaya, Hiroyuki*; Katayama, Kazunari*

Fusion Engineering and Design, 136(Part.A), p.357 - 361, 2018/11

A High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor (HTGR) is proposed as a tritium production device, which has the potential to produce a large amount of tritium using $$^{6}$$Li(n,$$alpha$$)T reaction. In the HTGR design, generally, boron is loaded into the core as a burnable poison to suppress excess reactivity. In this study, lithium is loaded into the HTGR core instead of boron and is used as a burnable poison aiming to produce thermal energy and tritium simultaneously. The nuclear characteristics and the fuel temperature were calculated to confirm the feasibility of the lithium-loaded HTGR. It was shown that the calculation results satisfied the design requirements and hence the feasibility was confirmed for the lithium-loaded HTGR, which produce thermal energy and tritium.

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

 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

Development of security and safety fuel for Pu-burner HTGR; Test and characterization for ZrC coating

Ueta, Shohei; Aihara, Jun; Goto, Minoru; Tachibana, Yukio; Okamoto, Koji*

Mechanical Engineering Journal (Internet), 5(5), p.18-00084_1 - 18-00084_9, 2018/10

To develop the security and safety fuel (3S-TRISO fuel) for Pu-burner high temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTGR), R&D on zirconium carbide (ZrC) directly coated on yttria stabilized zirconia (YSZ) has been started in the Japanese fiscal year 2015. As results of the direct coating test of ZrC on the dummy YSZ particle, ZrC layers with 18 - 21 microns of thicknesses have been obtained with 0.1 kg of particle loading weight. No deterioration of YSZ exposed by source gases of ZrC bromide process was observed by Scanning Transmission Electron Microscope (STEM).

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

Excellent feature of Japanese HTGR technologies

Nishihara, Tetsuo; Yan, X.; Tachibana, Yukio; Shibata, Taiju; Ohashi, Hirofumi; Kubo, Shinji; Inaba, Yoshitomo; Nakagawa, Shigeaki; Goto, Minoru; Ueta, Shohei; et al.

JAEA-Technology 2018-004, 182 Pages, 2018/07

JAEA-Technology-2018-004.pdf:18.14MB

Research and development on High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor (HTGR) in Japan started since late 1960s. Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) in cooperation with Japanese industries has researched and developed system design, fuel, graphite, metallic material, reactor engineering, high temperature components, high temperature irradiation and post irradiation test of fuel and graphite, high temperature heat application and so on. Construction of the first Japanese HTGR, High Temperature engineering Test Reactor (HTTR), started in 1990. HTTR achieved first criticality in 1998. After that, various test operations have been carried out to establish the Japanese HTGR technologies and to verify the inherent safety features of HTGR. This report presents several system design of HTGR, the world-highest-level Japanese HTGR technologies, JAEA's knowledge obtained from construction, operation and management of HTTR and heat application technologies for HTGR.

JAEA Reports

Comparison between HTFP code and minory changed FORNAX-A code

Aihara, Jun; Ueta, Shohei; Goto, Minoru; Inaba, Yoshitomo; Shibata, Taiju; Ohashi, Hirofumi

JAEA-Technology 2018-002, 70 Pages, 2018/06

JAEA-Technology-2018-002.pdf:1.46MB

HTFP code is code for calculation of additional release amount of fission product (FP) from fuel rod in high temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTGR) after stop of fission. Minory changed Fornax-A code also can calculate that. Therefore, release behavior of Cs calculated with HTFP code was compared with that calculated with minory modified FORNAX-A code in this report. Release constants of Cs evaluated with minory modified FORNAX-A code are rather different from default values for HTFP code.

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:38.14(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

Investigation of uncertainty caused by random arrangement of coated fuel particles in HTTR criticality calculations

Ho, H. Q.; Honda, Yuki; Goto, Minoru; Takada, Shoji

Annals of Nuclear Energy, 112, p.42 - 47, 2018/02

 Times Cited Count:1 Percentile:100(Nuclear Science & Technology)

Journal Articles

Burn-up characteristics and criticality effect of impurities in the graphite structure of a commercial-scale prismatic HTGR

Fukaya, Yuji; Goto, Minoru; Nishihara, Tetsuo

Nuclear Engineering and Design, 326, p.108 - 113, 2018/01

 Percentile:100(Nuclear Science & Technology)

Burn-up characteristics and criticality of impurity contained into graphite structure for commercial scale prismatic High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor (HTGR) have been investigated. For HTGR, of which the core is filled graphite structure, the impurity contained into the graphite has unignorable poison effect for criticality. Then, GTHTR300, commercial scale HTGR, employed high grade graphite material named IG-110 to take into account the criticality effect for the reflector blocks next to fuel blocks. The fuel blocks, which should also employ IG-110, employ lower grade graphite material named IG-11 from the economic perspective. In this study, the necessity of high grade graphite material for commercial scale HTGR is reconsidered by evaluating the burn-up characteristics and criticality of the impurity. The poison effect of the impurity, which is used to be expressed by a boron equivalent, reduces exponentially like burn-up of $$^{10}$$B, and saturate at a level of 1 % of the initial value of boron equivalent. On the other hand, the criticality effect of the boron equivalent of 0.03 ppm, which corresponds to a level of 1 % of IG-11 shows ignorable values lower than 0.01 %$$Delta$$k/kk' for both of fuel blocks and reflector blocks. The impurity can be represented by natural boron without problem. Therefore, the poison effect of the impurity is evaluated with whole core burn-up calculations. As a result, it is concluded that the impurity is not problematic from the viewpoint of criticality for commercial scale HTGR because it is burned clearly until End of Cycle (EOC) even with the low grade graphite material of IG-11. According to this result, more economic electricity generation with HTGR is expected by abolishing the utilization of IG-110.

Journal Articles

Development of security and safety fuel for Pu-burner HTGR, 2; Design study of fuel and reactor core

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

Proceedings of 25th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering (ICONE-25) (CD-ROM), 6 Pages, 2017/07

A PuO$$_{2}$$-YSZ fuel kernel with a ZrC coating, which enhances safety, security and safeguard, namely: 3S-TRISO fuel, was proposed to introduce to the plutonium-burner HTGR. In this study, the efficiency of the ZrC coating as the free-oxygen getter was examined based on a thermochemical calculation. A preliminary study on the feasibility of the 3S-TRISO fuel was conducted focusing on the internal pressure. Additionally, a nuclear feasibility of the reactor core was studied. As a result, all the amount of the free-oxygen is captured by a thin ZrC coating under 1600$$^{circ}$$C and coating ZrC on the fuel kernel should be very effective method to suppress the internal pressure. The internal pressure of the 3S-TRISO fuel at 500 GWd/t is lower than that of UO$$_{2}$$ kernel TRISO fuel whose feasibility had been already confirmed and the 3S-TRISO fuel should be feasible. The fuel shuffling allows to achieve 500 GWd/t. The temperature coefficient of reactivity is negative during the operation period and thus the nuclear feasibility of the reactor core should be achievable.

Journal Articles

Development of security and safety fuel for Pu-burner HTGR, 5; Test and characterization for ZrC coating

Ueta, Shohei; Aihara, Jun; Goto, Minoru; Tachibana, Yukio; Okamoto, Koji*

Proceedings of 25th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering (ICONE-25) (CD-ROM), 4 Pages, 2017/07

To develop the security and safety fuel (3S-TRISO fuel) for Pu-burner high temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTGR), R&D on zirconium carbide (ZrC) directly coated on yttria stabilized zirconia (YSZ) has been started in the Japanese fiscal year 2015. As results of the direct coating test of ZrC on the dummy YSZ particle, ZrC layers with 18 - 21 microns of thicknesses have been obtained with 0.1 kg of particle loading weight. No deterioration of YSZ exposed by source gases of ZrC bromide process was observed by Scanning Transmission Electron Microscope (STEM).

Journal Articles

Numerical investigation of the random arrangement effect of coated fuel particles on the criticality of HTTR fuel compact using MCNP6

Ho, H. Q.; Honda, Yuki; Goto, Minoru; Takada, Shoji

Annals of Nuclear Energy, 103, p.114 - 121, 2017/05

 Times Cited Count:3 Percentile:42.02(Nuclear Science & Technology)

JAEA Reports

Neutronic characteristic of HTTR fuel compact with various packing models of coated fuel particle

Ho, H. Q.; Honda, Yuki; Goto, Minoru; Takada, Shoji

JAEA-Technology 2016-040, 16 Pages, 2017/03

JAEA-Technology-2016-040.pdf:2.89MB

To study the packing effects of the truncated coated fuel particle on the criticality for the High Temperature engineering Test Reactor (HTTR), four alternative models including the truncated uniform model, the non-truncated uniform model, the truncated random model and the non-truncated random model for the arrangement of CFP in fuel compact were used, and the neutronic and criticality calculation were performed by using Monte Carlo MCNP6 code with ENDF/B-VII.1 cross section library. The results showed that the infinite multiplication factors (k$$_{rm inf}$$) in the truncated models were lower than those of the non-truncated models regardless of the uniform or random arrangement, and the four factors in the four-factor-formula showed that the difference of k$$_{rm inf}$$ was mainly attributed to the resonance escape probability. The difference in resonance escape probability is caused by the increase of capture reactions in the resonance region as the influence of spatial-self-shielding-effect. It is because the equivalent kernel diameter of the CFP for the truncated model is smaller than that of the non-truncated model.

Journal Articles

Sustainable and safe energy supply with seawater uranium fueled HTGR and its economy

Fukaya, Yuji; Goto, Minoru

Annals of Nuclear Energy, 99, p.19 - 27, 2017/01

AA2015-0534.pdf:0.56MB

 Times Cited Count:1 Percentile:64.68(Nuclear Science & Technology)

Sustainable and safe energy supply with seawater fueled HTGR have been investigated to sustain the nuclear energy safely by electricity generation with HTGR, the uranium resources must be inexhaustible. The seawater uranium is expected to be alternative resources to conventional resources. It is said that 4.5 billion tons of uranium is dissolved in the seawater, which corresponds to a consumption of approximately 72 thousand years. The uranium dissolved in seawater is in an equilibrium state with the uranium on surface of sea floor, which is approximately a thousand times of the amount, that is 72 million years. It can be recoverable. In other words, the uranium from seawater is almost inexhaustible natural resource. The cost of extracting uranium from seawater with current technology is still expensive compared with that of conventional uranium. However, the economy of nuclear power generation fueled by seawater uranium should be assessed for entire electricity generation cost. In the present study, the economy of electricity generation using uranium from seawater is assessed using a commercial HTGR. Compared with ordinary LWR using conventional uranium, HTGR can realize lower cost of electricity owing to small volume of simple direct gas turbine system compared with water and steam systems of LWR, rationalization by modularizing, and high thermal efficiency, even if fueled by seawater uranium. It is concluded that the HTGR fueled by seawater uranium with the current technology enables the energy sustainability to be maintained for a long term approximately 70 million years with superior inherent safety features and low cost of 7.28 yen/kWh, which is lower than the 8.80 yen/kWh cost of LWR using conventional uranium.

Journal Articles

Nuclear thermal design of high temperature gas-cooled reactor with SiC/C mixed matrix fuel compacts

Aihara, Jun; Goto, Minoru; Inaba, Yoshitomo; Ueta, Shohei; Sumita, Junya; Tachibana, Yukio

Proceedings of 8th International Topical Meeting on High Temperature Reactor Technology (HTR 2016) (CD-ROM), p.814 - 822, 2016/11

Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) has started R&D for apply SiC/C mixed matrix to fuel element of high temperature gas-cooled reactors (HTGRs) to improve oxidation resistance of fuel. Nuclear thermal design of HTGR with SiC/C mixed matrix fuel compacts was carried out as a part of above R&Ds. Nuclear thermal design was carried out based on a small sized HTGR for developing countries, HTR50S. Maximum enrichment of uranium is set to be 10 wt%, because coated fuel particles with 10 wt% uranium have been fabricated in Japan. Numbers of kinds of enrichment and burnable poisons (BPs) were set to be same as those of original HTR50S (3 and 2, respectively). We succeeded in nuclear thermal design of a small sized HTGR which performance was equivalent to original HTR50S, with SiC/C mixed matrix fuel compacts. Based on nuclear thermal design, intactness of coated fuel particles was evaluated to be kept on internal pressure during normal operation.

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