Developments and Tendencies in Fission Reactor Concepts

Abstract

This chapter describes, in two parts, new-generation nuclear energy systems that are required to be in harmony with nature and to make full use of nuclear resources. The issues of transmutation and containment of radioactive waste will also be addressed. After a short introduction to the first part, Sect. 58.1.2 will detail the requirements these systems must satisfy on the basic premise of peaceful use of nuclear energy. The expected designs themselves are described in Sect. 58.1.3. The subsequent sections discuss various types of advanced reactor systems. Section 58.1.4 deals with the light water reactor (LWR) whose performance is still expected to improve, which would extend its application in the future. The supercritical-water-cooled reactor (SCWR) will also be shortly discussed. Section 58.1.5 is mainly on the high temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTGR), which offers efficient and multipurpose use of nuclear energy. The gas-cooled fast reactor (GFR) is also included. Section 58.1.6 focuses on the sodium-cooled fast reactor (SFR) as a promising concept for advanced nuclear reactors, which may help both to achieve expansion of energy sources and environmental protection thus contributing to the sustainable development of mankind. The molten-salt reactor (MSR) is shortly described in Sect. 58.1.7. The second part of the chapter deals with reactor systems of a new generation, which are now found at the research and development (R&D) stage and in the medium term of 20–30 years can shape up as reliable, economically efficient, and environmentally friendly energy sources. They are viewed as technologies of cardinal importance, capable of resolving the problems of fuel resources, minimizing the quantities of generated radioactive waste and the environmental impacts, and strengthening the regime of nonproliferation of the materials suitable for nuclear weapons production. Particular attention has been given to naturally safe fast reactors with a closed fuel cycle (CFC) – as an advanced and promising reactor system that offers solutions to the above problems. The difference (not confrontation) between the approaches to nuclear power development based on the principles of “inherent safety” and “natural safety” is demonstrated.

Keywords

Burning Carbide Europe Transportation Iodine 

Abbreviations

ABWR

Advanced BWR

ALWR

Advanced LWR

ANL

Argonne National Laboratory

ANTARES

AREVA New Technology based on Advanced gas-cooled Reactor for Energy Supply

APWR

Advanced PWR

ATWS

Anticipated transient without scram

AVR

Arbeitsgemeinschaft Versuchsreaktor

BR

Breeding ratio

BREST

Lead-cooled Fast Reactor of Natural Safety

BWR

Boiling water reactor

CBR

Core breeding ratio

CDA

Core disruptive accident

CEFR

Chinese Experimental Fast Reactor

CFC

Closed fuel cycle

CPS

Control and protection system

CRBR

Clinch River Breeder Reactor

DFR

Dounreay Fast Reactor

EBR

Experimental Breeder Reactor

ECCS

Emergency core cooling system

EPR

European Pressurized Reactor

ESBWR

Economic simplified boiling water reactor

FA

Fuel assemblies

FBTR

Fast Breeder Test Reactor

FCA

Fast critical assembly

FFTF

Fast Flux Test Facility

FP

Fission product

FR

Fast reactor

GFR

Gas-cooled fast reactor

GIF

Generation IV International Forum

GT-MHR

Gas turbine-modular helium reactor

HCDA

Hypothetical core disruptive accident

HENDEL

Helium ENgineering DEmonstration Loop

HTGR

High temperature gas-cooled reactor

HTR-10

10 MW high temperature gas-cooled test reactor

HTR-10GT

HTR-10 with gas turbine

HTR-PM

High temperature reactor-pebble-bed module

HTTR

High temperature engineering test reactor

IAEA

International Atomic Energy Agency

IGR

Impulse graphite reactor

INES

International nuclear event scale

INF

Irradiated nuclear fuel

IRWST

In-containment refueling water storage tank

IS

Iodine–Sulfur

KNK

Kompakte Natriumgekühlte Kernreaktoranlage

LFR

Lead-cooled fast reactor

LOCA

Loss-of-coolant accident

LWR

Light water reactor

MA

Minor actinide

MHTGR

Modular high temperature gas-cooled reactor

MOX

Mixed oxide

MSBR

Molten-salt breeder reactor

MSR

Molten-salt reactor

MSRE

Molten-Salt Reactor Experiment

NE

Neutron excess

NNC

National Nuclear Center

NPP

Nuclear power plant

NRC

Nuclear Regulatory Commission

PBH

Potential biological hazard

PBMR

Pebble bed modular reactor

PFBR

Prototype fast breeder reactor

PFR

Prototype fast reactor

PUREX

Plutonium Uranium Recovery by EXtraction

PWR

Pressurized water reactor

SASS

Self-actuated shutdown system

SBWR

Simplified boiling water reactor

SCNES

Self-Consistent Nuclear Energy System

SCWR

Supercritical-water-cooled reactor

SEFOR

Southwest Experiment Fast Oxide Reactor

SFR

Sodium-cooled fast reactor

SNR

Schneller Natriumgekühlter Reaktor

THTR

Thorium high-temperature reactor

TRU

TRansUranic

ULOF

Unprotected LOss of Flow

UTOP

Unprotected transient over power

VHTR

Very high temperature gas reactor

VHTRC

Very high temperature reactor critical assembly

Notes

Acknowledgments

Prof. Y. Fuji-ie is grateful to Mr. Shoji Kotake and Mr. Nariaki Uto for their support through his contributing part of the chapter especially for the section on sodium-cooled fast reactor. The author is grateful also to Dr. Kazuo Arie, Dr. Masurou Ogawa, Dr. Kazuhiko Kunitomi and Dr. Kaoru Onuki for their contribution on HTGRs including valuable discussion on advanced nuclear energy system.

Prof. E. Adamov would like to thank Prof. V. Orlov and Drs. V. Smirnov, A. Lopatkin, and A. Dzhalavyan for their significant contribution to this chapter.

The chapter could not be completed without their contributions.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Research and Development Institute of Power Engineering (NIKIET)MoscowRussia
  2. 2.Tokyo Institute of TechnologyTokyoJapan

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