MONTE CARLO FIXED SOURCE CALCULATIONS TO SUPPORT BRUCE POWER START-UP INSTRUMENTATION PRELIMINARY DESIGN


37th Annual CNS Conference - 2017 June 04-07

Presented at:
37th Annual CNS Conference
2017 June 04-07
Location:
Niagara Falls
Session Title:
2B3 - Reactor and Radiation Physics (IV)

Authors:
J.L. Hu (SNC-Lavalin)
E. Talbot (SNC-Lavalin)
A. Khaial (SNC-Lavalin)
P. Paquette (Bruce Power)
M. Dahmani (SNC-Lavalin)
  

Abstract

For the initial fuel loading at a CANDU reactor, start-up instrumentation (SUI) is temporarily installed within the Viewport (VP) to provide the operator with a continuous indication of the neutron flux level and rate of change of neutron flux. Recently, Bruce Power has proposed to use retractable Fission Chambers in available spare in-core Vertical Flux Detector (VFD) assemblies. The VFD SUI is expected to provide comprehensive start-up instrumentation for power monitoring during the initial fuel loading and initial approach to criticality, as well as for starting-up after a normal outage that exceeds ~20 days. Due to the dimensional constraint with the inner diameter of the VFD unit, preliminary engineering effort was required to identify a suitable detector that provides sufficient sensitivity to detect a change in neutron population postrefurbishment during fuelling. Physics analyses using the MCNP fixed source methodology were performed to determine the detector neutron sensitivity required to observe a change in the neutron flux in the first stage of the fresh fuel loading. The approach considered various possible photo-neutron backgrounds and a variety of fuel channel configurations to help define the first stage of the fuelling.

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