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Science and Technology of Nuclear Installations
Volume 2008 (2008), Article ID 690357, 12 pages
Research Article

Numerical Simulations and Design Optimization of the PHT Loop of Natural Circulation BWR

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati, Guwahati 781039, Assam, India

Received 31 May 2007; Revised 19 December 2007; Accepted 3 March 2008

Academic Editor: Francesc Reventos

Copyright © 2008 G. V. Durga Prasad et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Mathematical modeling and numerical simulation of natural circulation boiling water reactor (NCBWR) are very important in order to study its performance for different designs and various off-design conditions and for design optimization. In the present work, parametric studies of the primary heat transport loop of NCBWR have been performed using lumped parameter models and RELAP5/MOD3.4 code. The lumped parameter models are based on the drift flux model and homogeneous equilibrium mixture (HEM) model of two-phase flow. Numerical simulations are performed with both models. Compared to the results obtained from the HEM model, those obtained from the drift flux model are closer to RELAP5. The variations of critical heat flux with various geometric parameters and operating conditions are thoroughly investigated. The material required to construct the primary heat transport (PHT) loop of NCBWR has been minimized using sequential quadratic programming. The stability of NCBWR has also been verified at the optimum point.