A joint experimental and numerical campaign is conducted to provide validation dataset of high-fidelity fluid–structure interaction (FSI) models of nuclear fuel assemblies during seismic loading. A refractive index-matched (RIM) flow loop is operated on a six-degree-of-freedom shake table and instrumented with nonintrusive optical diagnostics. The test section can house up to three full-height fuel assemblies. To guarantee reproducible and controlled initial conditions, special care is given to the test section inlet plenum; in particular, it is designed to minimize secondary pulsatile flow that may arise due to ground acceleration. A single transparent surrogate fuel subassembly is used near prototypical Reynolds number, based on hydraulic diameter. To preserve dynamic similarity of the model with prototype, the main dimensionless parameters are matched and custom spacer grids are designed. Special instruments are developed to characterize fluid and structure response and to operate in this challenging shaking environment. In parallel to the earlier experiments, we also conducted fully coupled direct numerical simulations, where the equations for the fluid and the structure are simultaneously advanced in time using a partitioned scheme. To deal with the highly complex geometrical configuration, which also involves large displacements and deformations, we utilize a second-order accurate, immersed boundary (IB) formulation, where the geometry is immersed in a block-structured grid with adaptive mesh refinement (AMR). To explore a wide parametric range, we will consider several subsets of the experimental configuration. A typical computation involves 60,000 cores, on leadership high-performance computing facilities (i.e., IBM Blue-Gene Q–MIRA).
Validation Facility and Model Development for Nuclear Fuel Assembly Response to Seismic Loading
Manuscript received January 31, 2015; final manuscript received June 30, 2015; published online September 3, 2015. Assoc. Editor: Jovica R. Riznic.
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Weichselbaum, N. A., Rahimi Abkenar, M., Vanella, M., Manzari, M. T., Balaras, E., and Bardet, P. M. (September 16, 2015). "Validation Facility and Model Development for Nuclear Fuel Assembly Response to Seismic Loading." ASME. ASME J of Nuclear Rad Sci. October 2015; 1(4): 041005. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4031031
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