Experimental studies and empirical models for the transient self-leveling behavior in debris bed

Songbai Cheng, Youhei Tanaka, Yoji Gondai, Takayuki Kai, Bin Zhang, Tatsuya Matsumoto, Koji Morita, Kenji Fukuda, Hidemasa Yamano, Tohru Suzuki, Yoshiharu Tobita

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


Studies on the self-leveling behavior in debris beds are crucial in the assessment of core-disruptive accidents (CDAs) that could occur in sodium-cooled fast reactors (SFRs). To clarify this behavior, a series of experiments have been performed in which nitrogen gas has been percolated uniformly through a particle bed. In these experiments, solid particles and water contained in a rectangular tank simulate respectively fuel debris and coolant. Based on the data obtained, an empirical model was developed to describe the transient variation in the bed inclination angle during the self-leveling process. Good agreement has been obtained between calculated and experimental values. Verification of the model has been confirmed through detailed analysis of the effects of experimental parameters such as particle size, particle density, and gas flow rate. Its applicability to extended conditions was further discussed by performing modeling simulations and comparing results against experimental data obtained from a larger-scale experimental system that employed a conventional boiling method. With further improvements, the model will be tested under more realistic reactor conditions and is expected to benefit future analyses and simulations of CDAs in SFRs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1327-1336
Number of pages10
Journaljournal of nuclear science and technology
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering


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