United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Investigation of Distorted-Geometry Simulation of Pool Dynamics in Horizontal-Vent BWR Containments

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Publication Information

Manuscript Completed: May 1979
Date Published:
April 1980

Prepared by:
N.G. Ruggieri, A.A. Sonin
Department of Mechanical Engineering
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Cambridge, MA 02139

Prepared for:
Division of Reactor Safety Research
Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research
U. S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Washington, D.C. 20555

NRC FIN No. B6167

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Abstract

Experiments were conducted to investigate the accuracy of distorted-geometry testing of pool dynamics in horizontal-vent BWR containments. Distorted-geometry testing implies testing in systems where the flow-wise dimensions are full scale, but all dimensions transverse to the flow are reduced in the same proportion. The assumption is that flow velocities, pressures and other thermodynamic properties can be interpreted as being the same in the distorted-geometry system as in its correctly proportioned counterpart. Our experiments, which were done at small scale using the established scaling laws, showed that the geometric distortions can have a significant effect on the pool swell under conditions which are roughly representative of horizontal-vent BWR containment systems during a LOCA. Breakthrough occurred later, the water ligament was thicker, and pool velocity lower in a system where the cross-sectional areas were reduced by a factor of three. Some reasons for the differences are discussed.

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