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Mixed Reload Design Using MOX and UOX Fuel Assemblies

[+] Author Affiliations
J. Ramón Ramírez Sánchez

Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Nucleares, Edo. de México, México

R. T. Perry

Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM

Paper No. ICONE10-22143, pp. 287-290; 4 pages
  • 10th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering
  • 10th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering, Volume 4
  • Arlington, Virginia, USA, April 14–18, 2002
  • Conference Sponsors: Nuclear Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-3598-7 | eISBN: 0-7918-3589-8
  • Copyright © 2002 by ASME


As part of the studies involved in plutonium utilization assessment for a Boiling Water Reactor, a conceptual design of MOX fuel was developed, this design is mechanically the same design of 10×10 BWR fuel assemblies but different fisil material. Several plutonium and gadolinium concentrations were tested to match the 18 months cycle length which is the current cycle length of LVNPP, a reference UO2 assembly was modeled to have a full cycle length to compare results, an effective value of 0.97 for the multiplication factor was set as target for 470 Effective Full Power days for both cycles, here the gadolinium concentration was a key to find an average fisil plutonium content of 6.55% in the assembly. A reload of 124 fuel assemblies was assumed to simulate the complete core, several load fractions of MOX fuel mixed with UO2 fresh fuel were tested to verify the shutdown margin, the UO2 fuel meets the shutdown margin when 124 fuel assemblies are loaded into the core, but it does not happen when those 124 assemblies are replaced with MOX fuel assemblies, so the fraction of MOX was reduced step by step up to find a mixed load that meets both length cycle and shutdown margin. Finally the conclusion is that control rods losses some of their worth in presence of plutonium due to a more hardened neutron spectrum in MOX fuel and this fact limits the load of MOX fuel assemblies in the core, this results are shown in this paper.

Copyright © 2002 by ASME
Topics: Fuels , Design



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