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Science and Technology of Nuclear Installations
Volume 2012, Article ID 698019, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/698019
Research Article

Economic Evaluation on the MOX Fuel in the Closed Fuel Cycle

School of Nuclear Science and Technology, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an, Shaanxi 710049, China

Received 13 September 2012; Accepted 11 December 2012

Academic Editor: Hangbok Choi

Copyright © 2012 Youqi Zheng 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.

Abstract

The mixed oxide (MOX) fuel is one of the most important fuels for the advanced reactors in the future. It is flexible to be applied either in the thermal reactor like pressurized water reactor (PWR) or in the fast reactor (FR). This paper compares the two approaches from the view of fuel cost. Two features are involved. (1) The cost of electricity (COE) is investigated based on the simulation of realistic operation of a practical PWR power plant and a typical fast breeder reactor design. (2) A new economic analysis model is established, considering the discount rate and the revenue of the reprocessed plutonium besides the traditional costs in the processes of fuel cycle. The sensitivity of COE to the changing parameters is also analyzed. The results show that, in the closed fuel cycle, the fuel cost of applying MOX fuels in the FBR is about 25% lower than that in the PWR at the current operating and fuel cycle level.