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In the RACE Project of the U.S. Advanced Fuel Cycle Initiative (AFCI), a series of accelerator driven subcritical systems (ADSS) experiments is being conducted at the Idaho State University’s Idaho Accelerator Center (ISU-IAC), at will be conducted at the University of Texas (UT) at Austin, and at the Texas A&M University. In these experiments we will use electron accelerators to induce bremsstrahlung photon-neutron reactions in heavy-metal targets; this source of about 1012 to 1013 n/s will then initiate fission reactions in the subcritical systems. These systems will include a compact, transportable assembly at ISU and TRIGA reactors at UT Austin and Texas A&M. These experiments will provide a variety of cores, fuel types and enrichments, and target/reactor configurations for many separate accelerator coupling studies. The UNLV portion of this project will be a three-year, three-phase project employing a principal investigator (as well as the UNLV TRP RACE Project Director), a graduate student, and an undergraduate student to support computational and experimental research at the ISU and the Texas universities, to integrate the UNLV Transmutation Research Project with this accelerator driven transmutation research, and to further develop UNLV’s computational infrastructure for reactor physics research.

During this quarter we concentrated on coordinating an expansion of RACE into an international project, focusing on high-power experiments using Texas TRIGA reactors with thermal feedback, which will impact the level of subcriticality, start-up and shut-down ADS reactor operations, and measurements of subcriticality. This will prove to be an extremely challenging expansion of the RACE Project.


Accelerator-driven systems; Bremsstrahlung; Nuclear reactions; Neutrons; Photons; Transmutation (Chemistry)


Nuclear | Nuclear Engineering