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Bentaib A.,Institute for Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety | Bleyer A.,Institute for Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety | Meynet N.,Institute for Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety | Chaumeix N.,Institute ICARE | And 10 more authors.
Annals of Nuclear Energy | Year: 2014

In case of a core melt-down accident in a light water nuclear reactor, hydrogen is produced during reactor core degradation and released into the reactor building. This subsequently creates a combustion hazard. A local ignition of the combustible mixture may generate standing flames or initially slow propagating flames. Depending on geometry, mixture composition and turbulence level, the flame can accelerate or be quenched after a certain distance. The loads generated by the combustion process (increase of the containment atmosphere pressure and temperature) may threaten the integrity of the containment building and of internal walls and equipment. Turbulent deflagration flames may generate high pressure pulses, temperature peaks, shock waves and large pressure gradients which could severely damage specific containment components, internal walls and/or safety equipment. The evaluation of such loads requires validated codes which can be used with a high level of confidence. Currently, turbulence and steam effect on flame acceleration, flame deceleration and flame quenching mechanisms are not well reproduced by combustion models usually implemented in safety tools and further model enhancement and validation are still needed. For this purpose, two hydrogen deflagration benchmark exercises have been organised in the framework of the SARNET network. The first benchmark was focused on turbulence effect on flame propagation. For this purpose, three tests performed in the ENACCEF facility were considered. They concern vertical flame propagation in an initially homogenous mixture with 13 vol.% hydrogen content and different geometrical configurations. Three blockage ratios of 0, 0.33 and 0.6 were considered to generate different levels of turbulence. The second benchmark objective was the investigation of the diluting effect on flame propagation. Thus, three tests performed in the ENACCEF facility using the same blockage ratio of 0.63 and three different initial gas compositions (with 10, 20 and 30 vol.% diluents) have been considered. Since ENACCEF runs at ambient temperature, a surrogate to steam was used consisting of a mixture of 0.6He + 0.4CO2 on molar basis. This paper aims to present the benchmarks conclusions regarding the ability of LP and CFD combustion models to predict the effect of turbulence and diluent on flame propagation. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Schwarz S.,GRS Society for plants and Reactor Safety | Fischer K.,Becker Technologies GmbH | Bentaib A.,Institute for Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety | Burkhardt J.,Ruhr University Bochum | And 8 more authors.
Nuclear Technology | Year: 2011

Within the course of a hypothetical severe accident in a nuclear power plant, hydrogen can be generated in the primary circuit and released into the containment. Considering the possibility of a deflagration, the simulation of the hydrogen distribution in the containment by computer codes is of major importance. To create a database for code validation, several distribution experiments using helium and hydrogen have been performed in the German Thermal Hydraulics, Hydrogen, Aerosols, Iodine (THAI) facility. The experiments started with the THIS test, which was the base of the International Standard Problem, exercise (ISP-47). THIJ was followed by the Hydrogen-Helium Material Scaling (HM) test series conducted within the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development/Nuclear Energy Agency (OECD/NEA) THAI project. The objectives of the HM tests were (a) to confirm the transferability of existing helium distribution test data to hydrogen distribution problems and (b) to understand the processes that lead to the formation and dissolution of a light gas cloud stratification. The HM-2 test was chosen for a code benchmark. During the first phase of the HM-2 test, a light gas cloud consisting of hydrogen and nitrogen was established in the upper half of the facility. In the second phase, steam was injected at a lower position inducing a rising steam-nitrogen plume. The plume did not break through the cloud because its density was higher than the density of the cloud. Therefore, the cloud was gradually dissolved from its bottom. Eleven organizations performed blind calculations for the HM-2 experiment. The lumped parameter (LP) ^codes ASTEC, COCOSYS, and MELCOR and the computational fluid dynamics (CFD) codes FLUENT, GASFWW, and GOTHIC were used. The main phenomena were natural convection, interaction between the rising plume and the light gas cloud, steam condensation on walls, fog behavior, and heat up of the walls. The experimental data of the first phase were published, and the atmospheric stratification was simulated reasonably well. The data from the second phase stayed concealed until the simulated results were submitted. The thermalhydraulic phenomena were well predicted by several LP and CFD contributions, whereas the time intervals needed to dissolve the light gas cloud were either underpredicted or overpredicted. However the other LP and CFD con tributions show edlarger deviations in the measured data. Reasons for deviations were identified, and model improvements were demonstrated in open posttest calculations. In this article, the experiment, the benchmark results, and the simulation features are described, and recommendations for code users are given.

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