United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Aluminum Chemistry in a Prototypical Post-Loss-of-Coolant-Accident, Pressurized-Water-Reactor Containment Environment (NUREG/CR-6915)

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Publication Information

Manuscript Completed: August 2006
Date Published:
December 2006

Principal Investigator: M. Klasky

Prepared by:
M. Klasky, J. Zhang, M. Ding, and B. Letellier (Los Alamos National Laboratory)
D. Chen and K. Howe (University of New Mexico)

Los Alamos National Laboratory
Los Alamos, NM 87545

University of New Mexico
Department of Civil Engineering
Albuquerque, NM 87110

T.Y. Chang, NRC Project Manager

Prepared for:
Division of Fuel, Engineering and Radiological Research
Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Washington, DC 20555-0001

NRC Job Code N6285

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An analysis of the integrated chemical effects tests (ICET) experiments has been performed by a comprehensive examination of both the test solutions and precipitates. In addition, a comprehensive review of the literature has been performed to assist in explaining the behavior of aluminum in alkaline solutions. The objective of this analysis was to elucidate the behavior of precipitate that formed when the ICET Tests 1 and 5 solutions were allowed to cool so that the behavior of other solutions with different conditions, i.e., pH, temperature, etc., could be predicted throughout the pressurized water reactor following a loss-of-coolant accident (LOCA). This examination included supplemental analytical measurements using x-ray diffraction, 27Al and 11B nuclear magnetic resonance for both liquid and solid states, and quasi-elastic light-scattering measurements. Surrogate solutions were developed and compared with the analytical measurements of the ICET Tests 1 and 5 solutions. Finally, the characterization of the particle sizes and corrosion properties, including the corrosion mechanism and the corrosion rate of aluminum under LOCA conditions, has been elucidated. The current study should allow for the development of a head-loss correlation using the existing cake filtration theory, which could be used in conjunction with a corrosion model to predict system performance following a LOCA.

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