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Science and Technology of Nuclear Installations
Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 785304, 12 pages
Research Article

A Coupled Calculation Suite for Atucha II Operational Transients Analysis

1Grupo de Licencamiento, Seguridad y Cálculo del Núcleo, Unidad de Gestión Atucha II, Nucleoeléctrica Argentina S.A., 2806 Lima, Argentina
2Grupo de Cálculo y Análisis de Sistemas Nucleares, TECNA Estudios y Proyectos de Ingeniería, C1107CLA Buenos Aires, Argentina

Received 20 August 2010; Accepted 17 December 2010

Academic Editor: Juan Ferreri

Copyright © 2011 Oscar Mazzantini 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.


While more than a decade ago reactor and thermal hydraulic calculations were tedious and often needed a lot of approximations and simplifications that forced the designers to take a very conservative approach, computational resources available nowadays allow engineers to cope with increasingly complex problems in a reasonable time. The use of best-estimate calculations provides tools to justify convenient engineering margins, reduces costs, and maximises economic benefits. In this direction, a suite of coupled best-estimate specific calculation codes was developed to analyse the behaviour of the Atucha II nuclear power plant in Argentina. The developed tool includes three-dimensional spatial neutron kinetics, a channel-level model of the core thermal hydraulics with subcooled boiling correlations, a one-dimensional model of the primary and secondary circuits including pumps, steam generators, heat exchangers, and the turbine with all their associated control loops, and a complete simulation of the reactor control, limitation, and protection system working in closed-loop conditions as a faithful representation of the real power plant. In the present paper, a description of the coupling scheme between the codes involved is given, and some examples of their application to Atucha II are shown.