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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

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

Preparation for restarting the high temperature engineering test reactor; Development of utility tool for auto seeking critical control rod position

Ho, H. Q.; Fujimoto, Nozomu*; Hamamoto, Shimpei; Nagasumi, Satoru; Goto, Minoru; Ishitsuka, Etsuo

Nuclear Engineering and Design, 377, p.111161_1 - 111161_9, 2021/06

 Times Cited Count:1 Percentile:83.53(Nuclear Science & Technology)

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:0 Percentile:0.02(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

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

Influences of the ZrC coating process and heat treatment on ZrC-coated kernels used as fuel in Pu-burner high temperature gas-cooled reactor in Japan

Aihara, Jun; Ueta, Shohei; Honda, Masaki*; Mizuta, Naoki; Goto, Minoru; Tachibana, Yukio; Okamoto, Koji*

Journal of Nuclear Science and Technology, 58(1), p.107 - 116, 2021/01

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

The concept of a Pu-burner high temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTGR) has been proposed for purpose of more safely reducing amount of recovered Pu. This concept employs coated fuel particles (CFPs) with ZrC coated PuO$$_{2}$$-YSZ kernel and with tristructural (TRISO) coating for very high Pu burn-up and high nuclear proliferation resistance. In this report, we investigate the microstructure of the region that includes the surface of an as-fabricated CeO$$_{2}$$-YSZ kernel simulating PuO$$_{2}$$-YSZ kernel. We found both Zr-rich grains and Ce-rich grains to be densely distributed in that region including surface of CeO$$_{2}$$-YSZ kernel. On the other hand, it has been reported that there was a porous region near surface of the CeO$$_{2}$$-YSZ kernel of Batch I. This finding confirms that Ce-rich grains near surface of CeO$$_{2}$$-YSZ kernels coated with ZrC layers have been corroded during the deposition of the ZrC layer, whereas the Zr-rich grains were hardly affected.

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

Research and development activities of JAEA for HTGR system realization

Mineo, Hideaki; Nishihara, Tetsuo; Ohashi, Hirofumi; Goto, Minoru; Sato, Hiroyuki; Takegami, Hiroaki

Nihon Genshiryoku Gakkai-Shi ATOMO$$Sigma$$, 62(9), p.504 - 508, 2020/09

High-Temperature Gas-cooled Reactor (HTGR) is one of thermal neutron reactor-type that employs helium gas coolant and graphite moderator. It has excellent inherent safety and can supply high-temperature heat which can be used not only for electric power generation but also for a wide range of application such as hydrogen production. Therefore, HTGR is expected to be an effective technology for reducing greenhouse gases in Japan as well as overseas. In this paper, we will introduce the forefront of technological development that JAEA is working toward the realization of an HTGR system consisting of a high temperature gas reactor and heat utilization facilities such as gas-turbine power generation and hydrogen production.

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:42.23(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:42.23(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.

JAEA Reports

Code-B-2.5.2 for stress calculation for SiC-TRISO fuel particle

Aihara, Jun; Goto, Minoru; Ueta, Shohei; Tachibana, Yukio

JAEA-Data/Code 2019-018, 22 Pages, 2020/01

JAEA-Data-Code-2019-018.pdf:1.39MB

Concept of Pu-burner high temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTGR) was proposed for purpose of more safely reducing amount of recovered Pu. In Pu-burner HTGR concept, coated fuel particle (CFP), with ZrC coated yttria stabilized zirconia (YSZ) containing PuO$$_{2}$$ (PuO$$_{2}$$-YSZ) small particle and with tri-structural isotropic (TRISO) coating, is employed for very high burn-up and high nuclear proliferation resistance. ZrC layer is oxygen getter. On the other hand, we have developed Code-B-2.5.2 for prediction of pressure vessel failure probabilities of SiC-tri-isotropic (TRISO) coated fuel particles for HTGRs under operation by modification of an existing code, Code-B-2. The main purpose of modification is preparation of applying code for CFPs of Pu-burner HTGR. In this report, basic formulae are described.

Journal Articles

Microstructures of ZrC coated kernels for fuel of Pu-burner high temperature gas-cooled reactor in Japan

Aihara, Jun; Ueta, Shohei; Honda, Masaki*; Mizuta, Naoki; Goto, Minoru; Tachibana, Yukio; Okamoto, Koji*

Journal of Nuclear Materials, 522, p.32 - 40, 2019/08

 Times Cited Count:2 Percentile:44.1(Materials Science, Multidisciplinary)

In order to realize Pu-burner high temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTGR), coated fuel particles (CFPs) with PuO$$_{2}$$-yittria stabilized zirconia (YSZ) fuel kernel coated with ZrC is employed for high nuclear proliferation resistance and very high burn-up. Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) have carried out ZrC coatings of particles which simulated PuO$$_{2}$$-YSZ kernels (CeO$$_{2}$$-YSZ particles or commercially available YSZ particles). Ce was used as simulating element of Pu. In this manuscript, microstructures of ZrC coated CeO$$_{2}$$-YSZ or YSZ particles were reported.

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

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

 Times Cited Count:1 Percentile:18.37(Nuclear Science & Technology)

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

 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

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.

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