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Sodium testing of fast reactor components

Jun 29, 2017, 9:00 AM
Room 6 (Yekaterinburg)

Room 6


ORAL Track 6. Test Reactors, Experiments and Modeling and Simulations 6.8 Experimental Facilities


Mr P. Selvaraj (Indira Gandhi Centre For Atomic Research)


Fast reactor components are required to work in hostile atmosphere of sodium, high temperature and radiation. Sodium testing of components before installation in reactor is essential for design validation and safe operation of the reactor. Components like Transfer arm, Inclined fuel transfer machine, Control and Safety Rod Drive Mechanism (CSRDM) and Diverse Safety Rod Drive mechanism (DSRDM), Under sodium ultrasonic scanner (USUSS) and Air Heat Exchanger of Safety Grade Decay Heat Removal system etc were sodium tested. In vessel purification for the primary sodium in future Indian fast breeder reactors is envisaged due to its enhanced safety and economic advantages. As part of this an integrated cold trap with integrated assembly of economiser, cold trap, sodium pump, sodium flow meter and associated systems is designed, developed and sodium tested to obtain heat transfer characteristic of integrated cold trap. 100T of sodium was purified by using integrated cold trap and around 5kg of Oxide and Hydride impurity was removed from impure sodium. An Under Sodium Ultrasonic Scanner (USUSS) has been developed for scanning the above core plenum to ensure safe start-up of fuel handling operation. The primary function of USUSS is to provide clearance for plug rotation for fuel handling operation. The USUSS having two transducers, one for Side Viewing with centre frequency of 1 MHz and other Downward Viewing with centre frequency of 5 MHz and capable of operating at 180 oC was sodium tested. Integral testing of Transfer Arm was carried out in sodium at the fuel handling temperature of 200oC for 600 cycles with two dwell periods of 100 hours at 550 oC interspersed between the cyclic tests. The performance testing in sodium of the primary side components of Inclined Fuel Transfer Machine, viz. primary ramp and primary tilting mechanism was done in sodium at 200oC for 10 % of the life in the reactor. Leak collection trays are provided below the secondary sodium pipe of PFBR. Functionality of one such leak collection tray and fusible plug provided in the system was tested with 100 kg sodium leak. Two new sodium test facilities have been designed and are being erected for conduction of various components testing of future fast reactor. The above sodium tests have provided valuable feedback in developing more robust components for future FBR.

Country/Int. Organization

India / Indira Gandhi Centre For Atomic Research, Department of Atomic Energy, Kalpakkam 603102 Tamilnadu India

Primary author

Mr P. Selvaraj (Indira Gandhi Centre For Atomic Research)


Mr A. Venkatesan Dr A.K. Bhaduri Mr P. Puthiyavinayagam (Indira Gandhi Centre For Atomic Research)

Presentation materials