Multidimensional multiphysics simulation of nuclear fuel behavior

R. L. Williamson, J. D. Hales, S. R. Novascone, Michael Tonks, D. R. Gaston, C. J. Permann, D. Andrs, R. C. Martineau

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

237 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Nuclear fuel operates in an environment that induces complex multiphysics phenomena, occurring over distances ranging from inter-atomic spacing to meters, and times scales ranging from microseconds to years. This multiphysics behavior is often tightly coupled and many important aspects are inherently multidimensional. Most current fuel modeling codes employ loose multiphysics coupling and are restricted to 2D axisymmetric or 1.5D approximations. This paper describes a new modeling tool able to simulate coupled multiphysics and multiscale fuel behavior, for either 2D axisymmetric or 3D geometries. Specific fuel analysis capabilities currently implemented in this tool are described, followed by a set of demonstration problems which include a 10-pellet light water reactor fuel rodlet, three-dimensional analysis of pellet clad mechanical interaction in the vicinity of a defective fuel pellet, coupled heat transfer and fission product diffusion in a TRISO-coated fuel particle, a demonstration of the ability to couple to lower-length scale models to account for material property variation with microstructural evolution, and a demonstration of the tool's ability to efficiently solve very large and complex problems using massively-parallel computing. A final section describes an early validation exercise, comparing simulation results to a light water reactor fuel rod experiment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)149-163
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Nuclear Materials
Volume423
Issue number1-3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2012

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nuclear fuels
Nuclear fuels
pellets
light water reactors
Light water reactors
Demonstrations
simulation
Coated fuel particles
fission products
Fission products
dimensional analysis
Microstructural evolution
scale models
physical exercise
Parallel processing systems
Materials properties
rods
heat transfer
spacing
Heat transfer

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering
  • Materials Science(all)

Cite this

Williamson, R. L., Hales, J. D., Novascone, S. R., Tonks, M., Gaston, D. R., Permann, C. J., ... Martineau, R. C. (2012). Multidimensional multiphysics simulation of nuclear fuel behavior. Journal of Nuclear Materials, 423(1-3), 149-163. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jnucmat.2012.01.012
Williamson, R. L. ; Hales, J. D. ; Novascone, S. R. ; Tonks, Michael ; Gaston, D. R. ; Permann, C. J. ; Andrs, D. ; Martineau, R. C. / Multidimensional multiphysics simulation of nuclear fuel behavior. In: Journal of Nuclear Materials. 2012 ; Vol. 423, No. 1-3. pp. 149-163.
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Williamson, RL, Hales, JD, Novascone, SR, Tonks, M, Gaston, DR, Permann, CJ, Andrs, D & Martineau, RC 2012, 'Multidimensional multiphysics simulation of nuclear fuel behavior', Journal of Nuclear Materials, vol. 423, no. 1-3, pp. 149-163. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jnucmat.2012.01.012

Multidimensional multiphysics simulation of nuclear fuel behavior. / Williamson, R. L.; Hales, J. D.; Novascone, S. R.; Tonks, Michael; Gaston, D. R.; Permann, C. J.; Andrs, D.; Martineau, R. C.

In: Journal of Nuclear Materials, Vol. 423, No. 1-3, 01.01.2012, p. 149-163.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Williamson RL, Hales JD, Novascone SR, Tonks M, Gaston DR, Permann CJ et al. Multidimensional multiphysics simulation of nuclear fuel behavior. Journal of Nuclear Materials. 2012 Jan 1;423(1-3):149-163. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jnucmat.2012.01.012