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DEM-CFD Study of Purge Gas Flow in Pebble Bed of WCCB for CFETR

[+] Author Affiliations
Youhua Chen

University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, China

Lei Chen, Songlin Liu

Chinese Academy of Sciences, Hefei, China

Paper No. ICONE25-66211, pp. V008T09A005; 7 pages
  • 2017 25th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering
  • Volume 8: Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and Coupled Codes; Nuclear Education, Public Acceptance and Related Issues
  • Shanghai, China, July 2–6, 2017
  • Conference Sponsors: Nuclear Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5786-1
  • Copyright © 2017 by ASME


As one of the breeding blanket candidates for China Fusion Engineering Test Reactor (CFETR), the water-cooled ceramic blanket (WCCB) was proposed to use mono-sized beryllium pebble bed and binary mixed Li2TiO3/Be12Ti pebble bed in order to increase the packing factor and meet the tritium breeding ratio requirement. Helium (mixed with 0.1% content of H2) is used as the purge gas to sweep tritium out when it flows through the pebble beds. Purge gas flow characteristics are of great importance to tritium recovery system design and will dominate the tritium sweep capability. In this study, DEM-CFD method was used to study the flow characteristics including porosity distribution, velocity distribution and pressure drop in the pebble beds. Mono-sized pebble bed with a packing factor of 0.61 and binary mixed pebble beds with the diameter ratio of 6:1, packing factor of 0.755, and diameter ratio of 7:1, packing factor of 0.7513 were simulated. This method can be used to study the detailed flow characteristics in pebble beds and optimize the pebble bed packing parameters to obtain an appropriate pressure drop, and could be extended to study tritium sweep capability for the design of fusion blanket.

Copyright © 2017 by ASME



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