, Volume 63, Issue 8, pp 73-79
Date: 19 Aug 2011

Thermal conductivity of UO2 fuel: Predicting fuel performance from simulation

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Recent progress in understanding the thermal-transport properties of UO2 for fission reactors is reviewed from the perspective of computer simulations. A path to incorporating more accurate materials models into fuel performance codes is outlined. In particular, it is argued that a judiciously integrated program of atomic-level simulations and mesoscale simulations offers the possibility of both better predicting the thermal-transport properties of UO2 in light-water reactors and enabling the assessment of the thermal performances of novel fuel systems for which extensive experimental databases are not available.