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Simulation of differential die-away instrument's response to asymmetrically burned spent nuclear fuel
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Physics, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Applied Nuclear Physics.
Los Alamos National Laboratory.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Physics, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Applied Nuclear Physics.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Physics, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Applied Nuclear Physics.
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2015 (English)In: Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research Section A: Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment, ISSN 0168-9002, E-ISSN 1872-9576, Vol. 788, 79-85 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Previous simulation studies of differential die-away (DDA) instrument's response to active interrogation of spent nuclear fuel from a pressurized water reactor (PWR) yielded promising results in terms of its capability to accurately measure or estimate basic spent fuel assembly (SFA) characteristics, such as multiplication, initial enrichment (IE) and burn-up (BU) as well as the total plutonium content. These studies were however performed only for a subset of idealized SFAs with a symmetric BU with respect to its longitudinal axis. Therefore, to complement the previous results, additional simulations have been performed of the DDA instrument’s response to interrogation of asymmetrically burned spent nuclear fuel in order to determine whether detailed assay of SFAs from all 4 sides will be necessary in real life applications or whether a cost and time saving single sided assay could be used to achieve results of similar quality as previously reported in case of symmetrically burned SFAs.

The results of this study suggest that DDA instrument response depends on the position of the individual neutron detectors and in fact can be split in two modes.The first mode, measured by the back detectors, is not significantly sensitive to the spatial distribution of fissile isotopes and neutron absorbers, but rather reflects the total amount of both contributors as in the cases of symmetrically burned SFAs. In contrary, the second mode, measured by the front detectors, yields certain sensitivity to the orientation of the asymmetrically burned SFA inside the assaying instrument. This study thus provides evidence that the DDA instrument can potentially be utilized as necessary in both ways, i.e. a quick determination of the average SFA characteristics in a single assay, as well as a more detailed characterization involving several DDA observables through assay of the SFA from all of its four sides that can possibly map the burn-up distribution and/or identify diversion or replacement of pins.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 788, 79-85 p.
National Category
Subatomic Physics
Research subject
Applied Nuclear Physics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-246729DOI: 10.1016/j.nima.2015.02.058ISI: 000354870700015OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-246729DiVA: diva2:793998
Available from: 2015-03-10 Created: 2015-03-10 Last updated: 2017-12-04Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Development of Differential Die-Away Instrument for Characterization of Swedish Spent Nuclear Fuel
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Development of Differential Die-Away Instrument for Characterization of Swedish Spent Nuclear Fuel
2015 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The Next Generation Safeguards Initiative Spent Fuel (NGSI-SF) project was established in 2009 by the U.S. Departmentof Energy with main objective to investigate, and potentially develop and test new technologies for spent nuclearfuel (SNF) characterization. In Sweden the SNF is currently being considered to be verified and encapsulated in canistersand deposited into a geological repository. The need for an independent instrument for SNF verification by theSwedish operator turned into the collaborative effort with NGSI-SF to develop an instrument for future deployment inSweden.One of the techniques investigated within this project is the differential die-away (DDA) technique, which followingthe theoretical investigation by means of high fidelity Monte Carlo simulations indicated the potential to be applied fordetermining of various spent fuel assembly (SFA) parameters.This work introduces the first deployable DDA instrument which was designed to be used for characterizing ofSwedish SFAs currently stored in the Central Interim Storage Facility for Spent Nuclear Fuel (Clab). All the instrumentcomponents relevant for DDA design functionality were evaluated to ensure reliable operation in Clab. Although mostof the components were tuned with special consideration given to concerns from the operator (The Spent Nuclear FuelandWaste Management Company) , several post-simulation modification of the design were made. These modificationsare described in this work.A complementary study of the detector responses to asymmetrically burned SFAs indicated a different detector responses,depending on which of the four different orientations was used to assay individual SFAs. This study illustratedthe sensitivity of detectors with respect to the SFA orientation if there is a strong burn-up gradient across the SFA andhence a strong asymmetry in isotopic distribution in the SFA. In addition, the study of asymmetry provided the informationon different operational scenarios of the DDA instrument. The DDA instrument may provide general informationabout the complete SFA as well as give local information about certain parts of the SFA.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala University, 2015
National Category
Other Physics Topics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-268143 (URN)
Presentation
2015-12-10, 80101, Ångström Laboratory, Uppsala, 12:47 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2015-12-04 Created: 2015-12-02 Last updated: 2015-12-04Bibliographically approved

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Martinik, TomasGrape, SophieJacobsson Svärd, StaffanJansson, PeterTobin, Stephen Joseph

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