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Combining Total Monte Carlo and Benchmarks for Nuclear Data Uncertainty Propagation on a Lead Fast Reactor's Safety Parameters
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Physics, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Applied Nuclear Physics. (Nuclear Reactions Group)
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Physics, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Applied Nuclear Physics. (Nuclear Reactions Group)
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Physics, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Applied Nuclear Physics. (Nuclear Reactions Group)
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Physics, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Applied Nuclear Physics. (Nuclear Reactions Group)
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2014 (English)In: Nuclear Data Sheets, ISSN 0090-3752, E-ISSN 1095-9904, Vol. 118, 542-544 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Analyses are carried out to assess the impact of nuclear data uncertainties on some reactor safety parameters for the European Lead Cooled Training Reactor (ELECTRA) using the Total Monte Carlo method. A large number of Pu-239 random ENDF-format libraries, generated using the TALYS based system were processed into ACE format with NJOY99.336 code and used as input into the Serpent Monte Carlo code to obtain distribution in reactor safety parameters. The distribution in keff obtained was compared with the latest major nuclear data libraries – JEFF-3.1.2, ENDF/B-VII.1 and JENDL-4.0. A method is proposed for the selection of benchmarks for specific applications using the Total Monte Carlo approach based on a correlation observed between the keff of a given system and the benchmark. Finally, an accept/reject criteria was investigated based on chi squared values obtained using the Pu-239 Jezebel criticality benchmark. It was observed that nuclear data uncertainties were reduced considerably from 748 to 443 pcm.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. Vol. 118, 542-544 p.
Keyword [en]
GENIV, reactor safety parameters, ELECTRA, nuclear data uncertainty, TMC
National Category
Other Physics Topics
Research subject
Applied Nuclear Physics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-197305DOI: 10.1016/j.nds.2014.04.129ISI: 000347704400128OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-197305DiVA: diva2:612471
Conference
International conference on nuclear data for science and technology, 4-8 March, 2013, New York USA
Projects
Total Monte Carlo
Available from: 2013-03-22 Created: 2013-03-21 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Nuclear data uncertainty propagation for a lead-cooled fast reactor: Combining TMC with criticality benchmarks for improved accuracy
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Nuclear data uncertainty propagation for a lead-cooled fast reactor: Combining TMC with criticality benchmarks for improved accuracy
2014 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

For the successful deployment of advanced nuclear systems and for optimization of current reactor designs, high quality and accurate nuclear data are required. Before nuclear data can be used in applications, they are first evaluated, benchmarked against integral experiments and then converted into formats usable for applications. The evaluation process in the past was usually done by using differential experimental data which was then complimented with nuclear model calculations. This trend is fast changing because of increase in computational power and tremendous improvements in nuclear reaction theories over the last decade. Since these model codes are not perfect, they are usually validated against a large set of experimental data. However, since these experiments are themselves not exact, the calculated quantities of model codes such as cross sections, angular distributions etc., contain uncertainties. A major source of uncertainty being the input parameters to these model codes. Since nuclear data are used in reactor transport codes asinput for simulations, the output of transport codes ultimately contain uncertainties due to these data. Quantifying these uncertainties is therefore important for reactor safety assessment and also for deciding where additional efforts could be taken to reduce further, these uncertainties.

Until recently, these uncertainties were mostly propagated using the generalized perturbation theory. With the increase in computational power however, more exact methods based on Monte Carlo are now possible. In the Nuclear Research and Consultancy Group (NRG), Petten, the Netherlands, a new method called ’Total Monte carlo (TMC)’ has been developed for nuclear data evaluation and uncertainty propagation. An advantage of this approach is that, it eliminates the use of covariances and the assumption of linearity that is used in the perturbation approach.

In this work, we have applied the TMC methodology for assessing the impact of nuclear data uncertainties on reactor macroscopic parameters of the European Lead Cooled Training Reactor (ELECTRA). ELECTRA has been proposed within the GEN-IV initiative within Sweden. As part of the work, the uncertainties of plutonium isotopes and americium within the fuel, uncertainties of the lead isotopes within the coolant and some structural materials of importance have been investigated at the beginning of life. For the actinides, large uncertainties were observed in the k-eff due to Pu-238, 239, 240 nuclear data while for the lead coolant, the uncertainty in the k-eff for all the lead isotopes except for Pb-204 were large with significant contribution coming from Pb-208. The dominant contributions to the uncertainty in the k-eff came from uncertainties in the resonance parameters for Pb-208.

Also, before the final product of an evaluation is released, evaluated data are tested against a large set of integral benchmark experiments. Since these benchmarks differ in geometry, type, material composition and neutron spectrum, their selection for specific applications is normally tedious and not straight forward. As a further objective in this thesis, methodologies for benchmark selection based the TMC method have been developed. This method has also been applied for nuclear data uncertainty reduction using integral benchmarks. From the results obtained, it was observed that by including criticality benchmark experiment information using a binary accept/reject method, a 40% and 20% reduction in nuclear data uncertainty in the k-eff was achieved for Pu-239 and Pu-240 respectively for ELECTRA.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala universitet, 2014. 100 p.
National Category
Other Physics Topics
Research subject
Applied Nuclear Physics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-224687 (URN)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2014-05-23 Created: 2014-05-17 Last updated: 2014-05-23Bibliographically approved
2. Nuclear data uncertainty quantification and data assimilation for a lead-cooled fast reactor: Using integral experiments for improved accuracy
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Nuclear data uncertainty quantification and data assimilation for a lead-cooled fast reactor: Using integral experiments for improved accuracy
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

For the successful deployment of advanced nuclear systems and optimization of current reactor designs, high quality nuclear data are required. Before nuclear data can be used in applications they must first be evaluated, tested and validated against a set of integral experiments, and then converted into formats usable for applications. The evaluation process in the past was usually done by using differential experimental data which was then complemented with nuclear model calculations. This trend is fast changing due to the increase in computational power and tremendous improvements in nuclear reaction models over the last decade. Since these models have uncertain inputs, they are normally calibrated using experimental data. However, these experiments are themselves not exact. Therefore, the calculated quantities of model codes such as cross sections and angular distributions contain uncertainties. Since nuclear data are used in reactor transport codes as input for simulations, the output of transport codes contain uncertainties due to these data as well. Quantifying these uncertainties is important for setting safety margins; for providing confidence in the interpretation of results; and for deciding where additional efforts are needed to reduce these uncertainties. Also, regulatory bodies are now moving away from conservative evaluations to best estimate calculations that are accompanied by uncertainty evaluations.

In this work, the Total Monte Carlo (TMC) method was applied to study the impact of nuclear data uncertainties from basic physics to macroscopic reactor parameters for the European Lead Cooled Training Reactor (ELECTRA). As part of the work, nuclear data uncertainties of actinides in the fuel, lead isotopes within the coolant, and some structural materials have been investigated. In the case of the lead coolant it was observed that the uncertainty in the keff and the coolant void worth (except in the case of 204Pb), were large, with the most significant contribution coming from 208Pb. New 208Pb and 206Pb random nuclear data libraries with realistic central values have been produced as part of this work. Also, a correlation based sensitivity method was used in this work, to determine parameter - cross section correlations for different isotopes and energy groups.

Furthermore, an accept/reject method and a method of assigning file weights based on the likelihood function are proposed for uncertainty reduction using criticality benchmark experiments within the TMC method. It was observed from the study that a significant reduction in nuclear data uncertainty was obtained for some isotopes for ELECTRA after incorporating integral benchmark information. As a further objective of this thesis, a method for selecting benchmark for code validation for specific reactor applications was developed and applied to the ELECTRA reactor. Finally, a method for combining differential experiments and integral benchmark data for nuclear data adjustments is proposed and applied for the adjustment of neutron induced 208Pb nuclear data in the fast energy region.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2015. 85 p.
Series
Digital Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Science and Technology, ISSN 1651-6214 ; 1315
Keyword
Total Monte Carlo, ELECTRA, nuclear data, uncertainty propagation, integral experiments, nuclear data adjustment, uncertainty reduction
National Category
Subatomic Physics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-265502 (URN)978-91-554-9407-0 (ISBN)
Public defence
2015-12-17, polhemsalen, Ångströmlaboratoriet, Lägerhyddsvägen 1, Uppsala, 09:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2015-11-24 Created: 2015-10-30 Last updated: 2016-01-13

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Alhassan, ErwinSjöstrand, HenrikDuan, JunfengGustavsson, CeciliaKoning, ArjanPomp, StephanÖsterlund, Michael

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