• G Pandikumar

      Articles written in Pramana – Journal of Physics

    • Multiple recycling of fuel in prototype fast breeder reactor

      G Pandikumar V Gopalakrishnan P Mohanakrishnan

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      In a thermal neutron reactor, multiple recycle of U–Pu fuel is not possible due to degradation of fissile content of Pu in just one recycle. In the FBR closed fuel cycle, possibility of multi-recycle has been recognized. In the present study, Pu-239 equivalence approach is used to demonstrate the feasibility of achieving near constant input inventory of Pu and near stable Pu isotopic composition after a few recycles of the same fuel of the prototype fast breeder reactor under construction at Kalpakkam. After about five recycles, the cycle-to-cycle variation in the above parameters is below 1%.

    • Improved analysis on multiple recycling of fuel in prototype fast breeder reactor in a closed fuel cycle

      G Pandikumar V Gopalakrishnan P Mohanakrishnan

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      An FBR closed fuel cycle involves recycling of the discharge fuel, after reprocessing and refabrication, to utilize the unburnt fuel remains and the freshly bred fissile material. Our previous study in this regard for the PFBR indicated a comfortable feasibility of multiple recycling with selfsufficiency. In the present work, more refined estimations are done using the most recent nuclear data, viz. ENDF/B-VII.0, and with the most recent specification of the fuel composition. Among others, this paper brings out the importance of taking into account the energy self-shielding effects in the cross-section averages used in the study. While self-shielded averages lead to realistic predictions, unshielded averages significantly overpredict breeding in the blankets and underpredict loss in the cores.

    • Multiple recycling of fuel in prototype fast breeder reactor in a closed fuel cycle with pressurized heavy-water reactor external feed

      G Pandikumar A John Arul P Puthiyavinayagam P Chellapandi

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      A fast breeder reactor (FBR) closed fuel cycle involves recycling of the discharged fuel, after reprocessing and refabrication, in order to utilize the unburnt fuel and the bred fissile material. Our previous study in this regard for the prototype fast breeder reactor (PFBR) indicated the possibility of multiple recycling with self-sufficiency. It was found that the change in Pu composition becomes negligible (less than 1%) after a few cycles. The core-1 Pu increases by 3% from the beginning of cycle-0 to that of recycle-1, the Pu increase from the beginning of the 9th cycle to that of the 10th by only 0.3%. In this work, the possibility of multiple recycling of PFBR fuel with external plutonium feed from pressurized heavy-water reactor (PHWR) is examined. Modified in-core cooling and reprocessing periods are considered. The impact of multiple recycling on PFBR core physics parameters due to the changes in the fuel composition has been brought out. Instead of separate recovery considered for the core and axial blankets in the earlier studies, combined fuel recovery is considered in this study. With these modifications and also with PHWR Pu as external feed, the study on PFBR fuel recycling is repeated. It is observed that the core-1 initial Pu inventory increases by 3.5% from cycle-0 to that of recycle-1, the Pu increase from the beginning of the 9th cycle to that of the 10th is only 0.35%. A comparison of the studies done with different external plutonium options viz., PHWR and PFBR radial blanket has also been made.

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