The proposed research would be conducted in 3 phases. Each of the phases would be carried out over a one-year period. Phase I includes model development, analysis, and the selection of a new casting furnace design. The work discussed in this report was completed as Phase I. Phase II of the program will lead to more modeling and validation to evaluate the proposed furnace concept. Phase III would be a joint effort between UNLV and Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) to demonstrate the acceptable use of the new furnace in a simulated remote environment.
The Phase III work would include the design and modification/fabrication of a small test furnace for remote operation. Some of the casting furnace techniques that will be evaluated include an induction skull melter, continuous casting, and the modification of the present process to operate at higher pressures.
The groundwork laid this past year developed a set of modeling tools to assist in the design of a realistic fabrication technique. The primary technical hurdle to overcome in the fabrication of a 21 metallic alloy fuel is that of efficiently including the highly volatile actinide elements (i.e., americium). A comprehensive model for the mass transport has been developed and will be implanted in year two of the project.
Actinide alloys; Americium; Metal-base fuel; Metal castings; Metallurgical furnaces; Nuclear fuel rods; Transmutation (Chemistry)
Nuclear | Nuclear Engineering
Phase I: Design and Analysis of a Process for Melt Casting Metallic Fuel Pins Incorporating Volatile Actinides.
Available at: https://digitalscholarship.unlv.edu/hrc_trp_fuels/11