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An Advanc ed Mol t en Sal t Reac t or Usi ng


Hi gh-Temper at ur e Reac t or Tec hnol ogy
Charles Forsberg
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Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Per Peterson
University of California at Berkeley
HaiHua Zhao
University of California at Berkeley
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Oak Ridge National Laboratory
P.O. Box 2008, Oak Ridge, Tennessee 37831-6165
Tel: 865-574-6783; E-mail: forsbergcw@ornl.gov
2:30 p.m.; June 14, 2004
2004 International Congress on Advances in Nuclear Power Plants
Embedded Topical: 2004 American Nuclear Society Annual Meeting
American Nuclear Society
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
June 1317, 2004
The submitted manuscript has been authored by a contractor of the U.S. Government under contract DE-AC05-00OR22725. Accordingly, the U.S. Government retains a nonexclusive, royalty-free license to
publish or reproduce the published form of this contribution, or allow others to do so, for U.S. Government purposes. File name: ICAPP.2004.MSR.View
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Ther e i s Renew ed I nt er est i n MSRs
Bec ause of Changi ng Goal s and New
Tec hnol ogi es (Si nc e 1970)
MSR is one of six Generation IV concepts
Only liquid-fueled reactor selected
Original basis for development
Thorium-cycle breeder reactor (
232
Th + n
233
U)
Backup for the liquid-metal breeder reactor program
Program cancelled
Decision to develop only one type of breeder reactor
As a breeder reactor, MSR has a low breeding ratio, slightly above one
Basis for renewed interest
Thorium-based MSR produces wastes with a very low actinide content
(reduced waste management burden)
Breeder with low breeding ratio is acceptable
Unique capability to burn actinides
New technology (Subject of this talk)
Reduces cost
Reduces technical challenges
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Mol t en Sal t Reac t or
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Molten Salt Reactors
02-122R
Chemical Processing Reactor Application
(Dependent upon goals)
Heat
Exchanger
Reactor
Graphite
Moderator
Secondary
Salt Pump
Off-gas
System
Primary
Salt Pump
Purified
Salt
Coupled
to Reactor
Separate Facility
(Collocated
or off-site)
Freeze
Plug
Critically Safe, Passively Cooled
Dump Tanks (Emergency
Cooling and Shutdown)
Electricity
(Helium/Gas Turbine)
or
Hydrogen
(Thermochemical)
NaBF
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_
NaF
Coolant Salt
Fuel Salt
Breeder
Converter (CR~0.9)
Waste Burner
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Mol t en Sal t Reac t or s Wer e Devel oped i n t he
1950s and 1960s
Mol t en Sal t Reac t or s: Fuel Di ssol ved i n Cool ant
Aircraft Nuclear
Propulsion Program
ORNL Aircraft
Reactor Experiment:
2.5 MW; 882C
Fuel Salt: Na/Zr/F
INEEL Shielded Aircraft
Hanger
Molten Salt Breeder
Reactor Program
ORNL Molten Salt
Reactor Experiment
Power level: 8 MW(t)
Fuel Salt:
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Li/Be/F
Clean Salt: Na/Be/F
Air-Cooled Heat
Exchangers
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The Mol t en Sal t Reac t or Ex per i ment
Demonst r at ed t he Conc ept
1960s Goal: Breeder
Base technology established
Todays Option
Actinide burning
New requirements
Changes in the base
technology
Hours critical 17,655
Circulating fuel loop time (hours) 21,788
Equiv. full power hrs w/
235
U fuel 9,005
Equiv. full power hrs w/
233
U fuel 4,167
MSRE power = 8 MW(t)
Core volume <2 cubic meters
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Thr ee Tec hni c al Devel opment s May
Dr amat i c al l y I mpr ove MSR Vi abi l i t y
(Tec hnol ogi es Bei ng Devel oped f or Hi gh-Temper at ur e Reac t or s)
Brayton power cycles (aircraft derived)
Compact heat exchangers (chemical
industry)
Carbon-carbon composite components
and heat exchangers
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Br ayt on Pow er Cyc l e
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Molten Salt Reactor
02-131R2
Reactor Multi-Reheat Helium
Brayton Cycle
Heat
Exchanger
Reactor
Graphite
Moderator
Secondary
Salt Pump
Off-gas
System
Primary
Salt Pump
Chemical Processing
(Collocated or off-site)
Freeze
Plug
Critically Safe,
Passively Cooled
Dump Tanks
(Emergency
Cooling and
Shutdown)
Coolant Salt
Fuel Salt
Purified
Salt
Hot Molten Salt
Cooling Water
Generator
Recuperator
Gas
Compressor
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Br ayt on Cyc l es El i mi nat e Mul t i pl e
Tec hni c al Chal l enges of t he MSR
Simplified tritium control
Tritium in fuel salt may
diffuse into power cycle
via hot heat exchangers
Tritium in steam cycle is
difficult to manage
Tritium in a dry Brayton
cycle is easy to remove in
the cold sections of the
cycle
No salt interactions if a
heat- exchanger failure
occurs
Steam and salt slowly
react
Helium or nitrogen does
not react with salt
Higher efficiency
High temperatures match
salt properties (avoid
freezing)
Brayton cycles match
preferred salt temperatures
Above: GE Power
Systems
MS7001FB
Left: GT-MHR
Power Conversion
Unit (Russian
Design)
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Sc al ed Compar i son of t he 1380-MW(e) ABWR
Tur bi ne Bui l di ng and ~1300-MW(e) MSR
MSR turbine building must also contain crane, turbine lay-down
space, compressed gas storage, and cooling water circulation
equipment
MSR requires ~1100 MW(t) of cooling water capacity, compared
with 2800 MW(t) for ABWR; no low-pressure turbines (steam)
Advanced helium Brayton
cycles can likely achieve a
substantial reduction of the
turbine building volume
ABWR
Helium-Brayton Cycle with
Three Power Conversion
Units (Similar to GT-MHR)
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Compac t Heat Ex c hanger s
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Compac t Heat Ex c hanger s May Reduc e
Fuel Sal t I nvent or y by Up t o Hal f
MSRs of the 1970s used
tube-and-shell heat
exchangers
New compact heat exchangers
have been demonstrated
Temperatures to 900C
Large units
>1000 psi
Reduce size of heat exchanger
by a factor of four
Heat exchanger in hot cell
Reduced salt inventory
Half the fuel inventory
Half the fuel salt to process
Structure of
Printed Circuit
HeatricHeat
Exchanger
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Car bon-Car bon Composi t es
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Li qui d Si l i c on I nf i l t r at i on (LSI ) Car bon-Si l i c on
Composi t es (CSi C) Ar e Candi dat e Mat er i al s f or
Use w i t h Mol t en Sal t s
Allow higher-temperature operations
Molten salt properties improve with
higher temperatures
Higher efficiency
Option for thermochemical hydrogen
production
Reduce noble metal plate-out in the
primary MSR system
Some noble metal fission products
plate out on metal heat exchangers
Plate-out on carbon materials is
much less pronounced
Potential for efficient control of
where noble metals plate out
IABG large furnace for CSiC fabrication
Highly complex part geometries
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Heat -Ex c hanger Monol i t h Can Be For med
by a Reac t i on Bondi ng Mul t i pl e Gr een
Pl at es, a St andar d LSI Tec hni que

M. Krdel, G.S. Kutter, M. Deyerler, and N. Pailer, Short carbon-fiber reinforced


ceramic -- Cesic -- for optomechanical applications, SPIE Optomechanical Design
and Engineering, Seattle, Washington, July 7-9, 2002.
Milled or die embossed
He flow channel
Reaction-bonded joint
Low-permeability coating
(optional)
Milled or die embossed
MS flow channel
SIDE VIEW
PLAN VIEW
P
x
l
w
P
y
Radius at corner
Radius at corner
h
He
d
He
h
MS
d
MS
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Conc l usi ons: New Tec hnol ogi es Bei ng Devel oped
f or Hi gh-Temper at ur e Reac t or s May Dr amat i c al l y
I mpr ove t he Vi abi l i t y of MSRs
Compact Heat Exchangers
Brayton Power Cycles
Carbon-Carbon Composites