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Research Papers: Fluid-Structure Interaction

An Investigation of the Structural Integrity of a Reactor Pressure Vessel Using Three-Dimensional Computational Fluid Dynamics and Finite Element Method Based Probabilistic Pressurized Thermal Shock Analysis for Optimizing Maintenance Strategy

[+] Author and Article Information
Xiaoyong Ruan

Graduate School of Energy Science,
Kyoto University,
Gokasho,
Uji, Kyoto 611-0011, Japan
e-mail: x-ruan@iae.kyoto-u.ac.jp

Toshiki Nakasuji

Graduate School of Energy Science,
Kyoto University,
Gokasho,
Uji, Kyoto 611-0011, Japan
e-mail: t-nakasuji@iae.kyoto-u.ac.jp

Kazunori Morishita

Institute of Advanced Energy,
Kyoto University,
Gokasho,
Uji, Kyoto 611-0011, Japan
e-mail: morishita@iae.kyoto-u.ac.jp

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Pressure Vessel and Piping Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF PRESSURE VESSEL TECHNOLOGY. Manuscript received July 25, 2017; final manuscript received June 22, 2018; published online August 22, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Tomoyo Taniguchi.

J. Pressure Vessel Technol 140(5), 051302 (Aug 22, 2018) (10 pages) Paper No: PVT-17-1134; doi: 10.1115/1.4040698 History: Received July 25, 2017; Revised June 22, 2018

The structural integrity of a reactor pressure vessel (RPV) is important for the safety of a nuclear power plant. When the emergency core cooling system (ECCS) is operated and the coolant water is injected into the RPV due to a loss-of-coolant accident (LOCA), the pressurized thermal shock (PTS) loading takes place. With the neutron irradiation, PTS loading may lead an RPV to fracture. Therefore, it is necessary to evaluate the performance of RPV during PTS loading to keep the reactor safety. In the present study, optimization of RPV maintenance is considered, where two different attempts are made to investigate the RPV integrity during PTS loading by employing the deterministic and probabilistic methodologies. For the deterministic integrity evaluation, three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics (3D-CFD) and finite element method (FEM) simulations are performed, and stress intensity factors (SIFs) are obtained as a function of crack position inside the RPV. As to the probabilistic integrity evaluation, on the other hand, a practically more useful spatial distribution of SIF on the RPV is calculated. By comparing the distribution thus obtained with the fracture toughness included as a part of the master curve, the dependence of conditional failure probabilities on the position inside the RPV is obtained. Using the spatial distribution of conditional failure probabilities in RPV, the priority of the inspection and maintenance is finally discussed.

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Figures

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Fig. 1

Description of the difference between 1D model and 3D model for the probabilistic integrity evaluation during PTS

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Fig. 2

Description of the dependence of the conditional failure probabilities on the axial direction inside the RPV

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Fig. 3

Description of analysis process for the deterministic integrity evaluation

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Fig. 4

Description of the CFD simulation: (a) 1/4 of the RPV model, (b) CFD simulation schematic diagram, and (c) the boundary condition for CFD simulation

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Fig. 5

Medium loss-of-coolant accident transient reference data: inner wall pressure history

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Fig. 6

Example distributions of temperature and stress on the inner RPV wall after 1200 s

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Fig. 7

Welding simulation model

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Fig. 8

Stress–strain curves: (a) RPV material and (b) cladding material

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Fig. 9

An example of the residual stress results after 1 pass welding

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Fig. 10

Schematic diagram for evaluation of SIF

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Fig. 11

Crack position in the axial and circumferential direction of RPV

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Fig. 12

Description of the postulated crack: (a) type and size of the postulated crack and (b) size of the effective crack

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Fig. 13

Calculated temperature and KI in the circumferential direction from 0 deg to 90 deg: (a) position A and (b) position B

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Fig. 14

Deterministic assessment of position A of the RPV by considering plume cooling effect. KIC's are obtained by (a) the ASME method and (b) the master curve method.

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Fig. 15

Deterministic assessment at position B by considering the plume cooling effect. KIC's are obtained by (a) the ASME method and (b) the master curve method.

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Fig. 16

Description of analysis process for the probabilistic integrity evaluation

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Fig. 17

Probability density function of surface crack size

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Fig. 18

Probability density distribution of KI in the circumferential direction of position B

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Fig. 19

Probabilistic assessment of position B by considering plume cooling effect in the circumferential direction

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Fig. 20

Probability density distribution of KI in the circumferential direction of position A

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Fig. 21

Probabilistic assessment of position A by considering plume cooling effect in the circumferential direction

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Fig. 22

Comparison of probabilities at positions A and B

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Fig. 23

Probability on the position in the axial direction of the RPV

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