Nuclear Technology and Radiation Protection 2005 Volume 20, Issue 2, Pages: 3-9
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Nodalization effects on RELAP5 results related to MTR research reactor transient scenarios

Khedr Ahmed, d’Auria Francesco

The present work deals with the anal y sis of RELAP5 results obtained from the evaluation study of the total loss of flow transient with the deficiency of the heat removal system in a research reactor using two different nodalizations. It focuses on the effect of nodalization on the thermal-hydraulic evaluation of the re search reactor. The analysis of RELAP5 results has shown that nodalization has a big effect on the predicted scenario of the postulated transient. There fore, great care should be taken during the nodalization of the reactor, especially when the avail able experimental or measured data are insufficient for making a complete qualification of the nodalization. Our analysis also shows that the research reactor pool simulation has a great effect on the evaluation of natural circulation flow and on other thermal-hydraulic parameters during the loss of flow transient. For example, the on set time of core boiling changes from less than 2000 s to 15000 s, starting from the beginning of the transient. This occurs if the pool is simulated by two vertical volumes in stead of one vertical volume.

Keywords: research reactor, loss of flow, natural circulation, nodalization effect, thermal-hydraulic parameters, RELAP5