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A mathematical framework for evaluation of column shape profiles for an advanced gas-cooled reactor core model subject to seismic excitation

A mathematical framework for evaluation of column shape profiles for an advanced gas-cooled reactor core model subject to seismic excitation

White, Rory, Gokce, Tansu, Oddbjornsson, Olafur, Bourne, Kate, Crewe, Adam, Dihoru, Luiza, Horseman, Tony, Dietz, Matthew, Kloukinas, Panos ORCID: 0000-0002-5158-3109 and Taylor, Colin (2021) A mathematical framework for evaluation of column shape profiles for an advanced gas-cooled reactor core model subject to seismic excitation. Nuclear Engineering and Design, 391:111735. ISSN 0029-5493 (doi:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nucengdes.2022.111735)

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Abstract

The safe shutdown of Advanced Gas-cooled Reactor (AGR) nuclear power stations in response to a seismic event is vital to their safety case. The tubular graphite bricks used to moderate the neutrons within an AGR core are arranged in columns whose bores provide channels for either fuel or control rods. Earthquake-induced distortion of the channels could impede the insertion of the control rods and compromise the safe shut-down, maintenance and servicing of the reactor. This paper presents a mathematical framework, utilising Euler mechanics, to evaluate the column shape displacement profiles of fuel and control rod channels within a state-of-the-art quarter-sized physical model of an AGR core when subjected to seismic loading. The data obtained from sensors installed within the model bricks, and configured to monitor interface displacements, are used to infer the global behaviour of a multi-stacked brick column subject to seismic excitation. Directly measured displacements of the top of the brick columns, obtained using a motion capture vision system, are compared with the displacements calculated using the framework presented, verifying the validity of the procedure. Statistical analysis is employed to quantify and characterise the performance of the Euler mechanics method. For multiple model build configurations, which represent different brick-cracking scenarios in an aged core, the Pearson correlation factor between the direct and indirect measurements is evaluated for the top of the column displacements giving an average value of 0.96 in the direction of the input motion. This shows that good agreement is achieved for the column shape displacement time-histories. The seismic responses are shown to be significantly larger in amplitude in the presence of large numbers of cracked bricks.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: advanced gas cooled reactor; displacement analysis; stacked column; column shape; displacement; seismic testing
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics
T Technology > TJ Mechanical engineering and machinery
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Engineering & Science
Faculty of Engineering & Science > School of Engineering (ENG)
Last Modified: 09 May 2022 08:47
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/35837

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