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The NEA Committee for the Safety of Nuclear Installations (CSNI) has been promoting international initiatives and collaborations to establish convincing experimental safety programmes around specific facilities. As a first step in this direction, the PKL (Pressurised Water Reactor) loop in Germany and the PANDA in Switzerland were requested to develop proposals consistent with the priorities indicated in the CSNI Senior Group of Experts on Safety Research (SESAR) report Nuclear Safety Research in OECD Countries: Summary Report of Major Facilities and Programmes at Risk. Their proposals, after discussions with Member country experts, formed the basis for the SETH Project.
The SETH Project covers two aspects of accident management:
Part 1 is related to gas mixing and stratification issues in LWR containments under accidental conditions. The experiments have been performed in the PANDA facility at PSI, Switzerland.
Part 2 is related to two PWR safety issues: boron dilution during SB-LOCA and loss of residual heat removal during mid-loop operation. The experiments have been performed in the PKL facility at AREVA NP, Germany.
The SNP/ PKL tests investigate two PWR safety issues: boron dilution in loss of coolant accidents and boron dilution during mid-loop operation (shutdown conditions). The first category of tests verifies if conditions can arise for core reactivity insertion due to boron dilution during a small-break loss of coolant accidents and with a natural circulation restart. The second test series assesses primary circuit accident management operations to prevent boron dilution as a consequence of loss of heat removal in mid-loop operation conditions.
The large-scale test facility PKL is a scaled-down model of a pressurized water reactor of KWU design of the 1300 MW class. Reference plant is the Philippsburg 2 nuclear power plant. The PKL test facility models the entire primary side and essential parts of the secondary side (without turbine and condenser) of the reference plant.
The 4 tests on inherent boron dilution during SB-LOCA were:
E1.1 (break in hot leg, HPSI into all 4 cold legs)
E2.1 (break in hot leg, HPSI into all 4 hot legs)
E2.2 (break in cold leg, HPSI into 2 cold legs)
E2.3 (break in hot leg, HPSI into 2 hot legs)
Test E3.1 (loss of RHRS in shutdown plant) was conducted utilizing boric acid and boron concentration measuring technique.
Project participants: Belgium, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States.
Project period: April 2001-June 2005
The distribution of this package is restricted and subject to prior approval.
For more information see http://www.nea.fr/html/jointproj/seth.html
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Keywords: boron dilution, loss-of-coolant accident, pressurized water reactor.