The Computational Fluid Dynamics for Nuclear Reactor Safety (CFD4NRS) workshop series was launched in 2006 to establish a forum to exchange information on the application of Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) to nuclear power plant safety and advanced reactor issues. CFD resolves a higher level of phenomenological detail compared to the established system-scale tools. While this appears promising, it also raises new questions about how to evaluate and integrate CFD-based safety studies, which are currently limited to a relatively small number of applications.
The 9th edition of the CFD4NRS workshop, organised under the auspices of the NEA Working Group on Analysis and Management of Accidents (WGAMA) was hosted by Texas A&M University on 20-22 February 2023 in College Station, Texas, United States. The workshop brought together international nuclear safety research organisations, technical support organisations, industry and academia, to exchange and share experiences and research results of the development, assessment, and applications of single-phase and multi-phase simulation tools acting at the small scale for nuclear reactor safety (NRS) issues, and to address both CFD applications and the related experimental and instrumentation issues.
The workshop included sessions, keynote lectures and panel discussions devoted to exploring bubble dynamics, verification and validation, and liquid metals simulation. Workshop participants also explored the application of open-source computer codes, fluid structure interaction (FSI), thermal stresses, fluid mixing, multiscale and multiphysics simulations, and CFD code validation for nuclear applications and severe accidents.
The 9th CFD4NRS workshop brought together over 60 participants from 25 different countries at the Texas A&M University on 20-22 February 2023.
Enhancing CFD code validation for nuclear applications has been a key focus for the WGAMA, along with the drastic increase in computing power. These factors have contributed to an increased use of CFD in the field of nuclear reactor studies – including safety assessment aspects. CFD is also having an impact on innovative nuclear technologies with ongoing efforts to develop water-cooled SMRs being considered for potential CFD applications.
CFD is continuously evolving and displaying promising capabilities for certain areas of nuclear safety research – mostly for relatively small systems or part of components. As this use remains limited, the CFD Task Group is therefore working towards implementing enlarging its use in safety applications.
You can read more about the NEA’s work on nuclear power plant accident management on the WGAMA webpage.