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The Xe-100 is a 200MWt Advanced Pebble Bed Reactor that will be deployed in Washington State in the 2028 timeframe with the support of the US DOE Advanced Reactor Demonstration Program. The Xe-100 has been designed and optimized throughout it’s design lifecycle using STAR-CCM+ as the primary thermo dynamics analysis tool. This webinar will provide an overview of how early simulation of the design has informed the design team to enable optimization of the design and various system components to meet economic goals and safety requirements.

The Xe-100 design makes use of passive safety features to shut the reactor down and to ensure that decay heat can be removed through passive means. Modelling of the reactor pebble bed core and associated graphite core structures, reactor pressure vessel and reactor cavity cooling system was made possible through the use of STAR-CCM+. Specific user coding was developed to represent the pebble bed thermal inertia and predict the maximum peak temperatures in the pebble fuel elements. Material properties also had to be modeled as a function of temperature, pressure and in some cases accumulated neutron fluence (dose).

STAR-CCM+ was also used to model may other systems such as the helium circulator, helical coil steam generator, spent fuel storage system, fuel handling system components and reactor cavity cooling system.

The DEM capability was also used to model the flow of the pebble fuel elements as they move through the core in order to determine the maximum, average and minimum residence time for the pebbles. Results from the DEM analysis are then used to develop a detailed CAD representation of the randomly packed pebble bed which is then used to explicitly model the heat transfer from the pebbles to the helium gas which transports the heat to the steam generator.

STAR-CCM+ has therefore been and continues to be a crucial tool that is used to model many parts of the Xe-100 reactor and other plant system.

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