Thermal Hydraulics for Boiling and Passive Systems

Lead Research Organisation: Imperial College London
Department Name: Dept of Mechanical Engineering

Abstract

New nuclear power stations are likely to be a major contributor to energy security and reduction of carbon emissions. Such reactors will almost certainly be water-cooled. Whilst water is a very good coolant, steam is not, and the water coolant can become steam under certain conditions. The three themes of this project are each aimed at developing a better understanding of when this transition occurs, and developing better techniques to predict this. This project is an international collaboration, between scientists at the Bhaba Atomic Research Centre (BARC) in India, and groups at three UK universities. The better techniques will be based on experimental measurements of boiling systems to be conducted at BARC, in conjunction with the UK participants, and the development of computational models based on these.

Planned Impact

The main impact of the work will be in the provision of better models of the boiling, 'critical heat flux' phenomena and heat transfer to fluids at supercritical pressure. These will be important because they will allow designs to be proposed with greater confidence, and to have less conservative margins applied, improving both the safety and economics of the plant. This impact will be achieved by making sure the work is widely disseminated, via journal papers and conference presentation, but also by the extensive direct research-based interactions between the investigators and the nuclear industry.
 
Description The work has contributed to the ability to understand and predict natural circulation and critical heat flux in nuclear reactors.
Exploitation Route Further phenomenological methods development could be undertaken, to widen the scope of applicability.
Further validation, to provide confidence for nuclear application, is needed.
Sectors Energy

 
Description EPSRC Indo-UK Civil Nuclear (Grace Time)
Amount £681,131 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2016 
End 02/2020
 
Description EPSRC Indo-UK Civil Nuclear (Network)
Amount £204,533 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/M018296/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2015 
End 10/2018
 
Description Indo-UK Civil Nuclear III (OICHF)
Amount £112,729 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/M018261/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2016 
End 01/2018