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3.4 Full Scale Tests of Axial Profile Heat Flux Influence on the Critical Quality in PWR Steam Generators

DOI: 10.1615/ICHMT.1982.AdvCourHeatTransfNucReactSaf.300
pages 523-536

Maurizio Cumo
ENEA, Rome; DINCE, University of Rome “La Sapienza”, Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, 244, Rome, Italy

F. V. Frazzoli
University of Rome, Italy

G. Palazzi
Comitato Nazionale per L'Energia Nucleare, Roma, Italy

G. C. Urbani
Comitato Nazionale per L'Energia Nucleare, Roma, Italy


Different opinions exist in scientific literature about the extent and the limits on critical quality and crisis location of the axial heat flux profile in a steam generator channel. Axial disuniformities over certain limits may change the critical quality. These limits have been differently computed in the literature. So an "ad hoc", full scale test has been deemed useful to ascertain definitively the heat flux profile influence on critical quality in a situation of interest for PWR once-through steam generators.
Two identical test sections (length: 9 m; inner diameter: 21.1 mm) have been placed in parallel flow: one is at constant, uniform heat flux, the other is with axially shaped heat flux. The profile of heat flux has been determined with reference to once through steam generators. The behaviour of the two test sections is studied under identical flow conditions (water pressure: 50*70 bar), specific mass flowrate (100÷300 kg/m2s), inlet subcoolings, overall injected powers. Crisis detectors, at the outlet of the two test sections, give the measure of the differential performances during contemporary tests. A void fraction meter has been "ad hoc" developed and employed for these experiments.
The gauge is based on the transmission of a thermal neutron beam obtained with a 252 Cf neutron source coupled with a polyethylen howitzer. This gauge allows an accurate determination of high void fractions in channels of relatively small diameter (21.1 mm). The tests have been characterized both by simultaneous occur rence of outlet dry-outs and by dry-out only in the shaped-profile test section. An extensive analysis through the test parameters has been performed.

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