United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Data Analyses for Nevada Test Site (NTS) Premixed Combustion Tests (NUREG/CR-4138, SAND85-0135)

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Publication Information

Manuscript Completed: April 1985
Date Published:
May 1985

Prepared by:
A.C. Ratzel, III
Organization 1513
Sandia National Laboratories
Albuquerque, New Mexico 87185
Operated by Sandia Corporation
for the U.S. Department of Energy

Prepared for:
Division of Accident Evaluation
Division of Engineering Technology
Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Washington, DC 20555-0001

NRC FIN A-1246, A-1270

Availability Notice


This report provides results from an in-depth analysis of twenty-one of the twenty-four premixed large-scale combustion experiments sponsored by the U. S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) and conducted by EG&G at the Nevada Test Site (NTS). These experiments were performed in a 2048 cubic meter spherical vessel (hydrogen dewar) with mixtures of hydrogen, steam, and air ignited by glow plugs or heated resistance coils. Hydrogen concentrations ranged from 5 to 13% (by volume) and steam concentrations from 4 to 40%. Several tests also incorporated spray systems and/or fans which enhanced the combustion rate and significantly altered the postcombustion gas cooling.

In this work, data provided by EPRI from instrumentation designed to characterize the thermal environment in the dewar during and following combustion have been evaluated. The data reduction package SMOKE has been used to process data from thin-film gauges, Gardon and Schmidt-Boelter heat flux gauges, capacitance calorimeters, gas and wall thermocouples, arid pressure sensors. Local measurements of the heat transfer are provided from the calorimetry, and global averages are inferred from the pressure. Instrumentation "goodness" for each test is assessed based on the raw data and on comparisons of local and global results. Graphical and tabular results are provided for each test, and trends observed from the results are reported. This information should be useful for benchmarking existing computer codes used in modeling nuclear containment and associated safety-related equipment response to degraded core accidents and for improving combustion and heat transfer models currently used in these computer simulations.

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