Experimental study on the natural circulation behavior of a full-scale PWR fuel assembly

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

2 Scopus Citations
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  • Maolong Liu
  • Song Ni
  • Xiaowen Wang
  • Limin Liu
  • Hanyang Gu

Related Research Unit(s)


Original languageEnglish
Article number109172
Journal / PublicationAnnals of Nuclear Energy
Online published13 May 2022
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2022


During a loss-of-coolant accident in spent fuel pools, the fuel assembly will be exposed to the air environment and decay heat will be removed through the natural circulation of air. There are few experimental studies on the natural circulation behavior in the spent fuel pool. In this study, a natural circulation experiment in a full-size PWR fuel assembly was carried out by replacing the fuel rods with electrical heating rods. The temperature distributions at eight different heights as well as air flow rate were obtained during the heating-up process of the fuel assembly. When the temperature difference between the fuel assembly and the environment is less than 150 °C, the flow rate increases as the temperature difference increase. But after the temperature difference exceeds 150 °C, the flow rate no longer changes with the temperature difference. The results of this study can be used to verify the system codes and CFD models.

Research Area(s)

  • Fuel assemblies, Loss-of-coolant accident, Natural circulation, Spent fuel pools