Safety analysis of Solid Core-Sectored Compact Reactor (SC-SCoRe) | Conference Paper individual record

The Solid Core-Sectored Compact Reactor (SC-SCoRe) power system could nominally provide 38 kWe to a future lunar outpost continuously for ∼ 21 years. It employs static components for passive operation with no single point failures in reactor cooling and power conversion. The reactor with a monolithic core operates at a nominal thermal power of 1.0 MWth generated by six sectors cooled with circulating liquid NaK-56 at inlet and exit temperatures of 850 K and 900 K. The core sectors are coupled neutronically and thermally but not hydraulically. Each sector has a separate pair of primary and secondary loops with thermoelectric (TE) powered electromagnetic pumps, a TE power conversion assembly, and heat-pipes radiator panels. This paper presents the results of 3D thermal-hydraulics and safety analyses of the SC-SCoRe, following the unlikely event of a loss of coolant (LOC) in a primary loop or a loss of cooling (LOCo) in a secondary loop. The fission heat generated in the affected core sector transfers to the two adjacent sectors cooled by circulating liquid NaK-56. The two structural materials investigated for the monolithic core block are 316L stainless steel and oxide dispersion strengthened molybdenum (ODS-Mo). Results favor ODS-Mo, with core temperatures much lower than with 316L stainless steel. They also demonstrate that with a core sector experiencing a LOC or a LOCo, the power system continues operating safely at a reduced reactor power of 323 kWth, supplying 4 kWe to the lunar outpost.

author list (cited authors)
Schriener, T. M., & El-Genk, M. S.
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