A novel concept of passive shutdown heat removal in advanced nuclear reactors—Applications to PRISM and MHTGR Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • A novel concept of passive shutdown heat removal in advanced nuclear reactors is presented. In particular, its application to PRISM and MHTGR design has been discussed. The concept relies on shutdown heat removal from the reactor vessel by natural circulation of the containment building atmosphere (an inert gas) around the reactor vessel, and rejection of the heat from the gas to the outside environment through a system of heat-pipe heat exchangers located at the top of the containment structure. In comparison with the atmospheric air-cooling approach that is currently under consideration for PRISM and MHTGR, the attractiveness of the proposed heat-pipe emergency cooling system is that while it too is totally passive, it allows the reactor vessel to be housed in a conventional containment structure with an inert atmosphere which may be required for licensing the reactor in the U.S.A. Thus, the proposed system addresses the ongoing controversy over the containment issue for the PRISM and the MHTGR, while preserving the passive safety features of the shutdown heat removal technique. The proposed design concept may provide a viable alternative to the air-cooling approach that is being currently considered for the advanced reactors. © 1989.

author list (cited authors)

  • Razzaque, M. M., Pate, M. B., & Shapiro, H. N.

citation count

  • 4

publication date

  • January 1989