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Science and Technology of Nuclear Installations
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 197502, 5 pages
Project Report

Design, Development and Installation of Jordan Subcritical Assembly

1Nuclear Energy Group, Center for Strategic Energy Studies, Amman 38111, Jordan
2Nuclear Engineering Department, Jordan University of Science and Technology, Irbid 22110, Jordan

Received 31 May 2013; Accepted 13 July 2013

Academic Editor: Keith E. Holbert

Copyright © 2013 Ned Xoubi. 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.


Following its announcement in 2007 to pursue a nuclear power program and in the absence of any nuclear facility essential for the education, training, and research, Jordan decided to build a subcritical reactor as its first nuclear facility. Jordan Subcritical Assembly (JSA) is uranium fueled light water moderated and reflected subcritical reactor driven by a plutonium-beryllium source, and the core consists of 313 LEU fuel rods, loaded into a water-filled vessel in a square lattice of 19.11 mm pitch. The fuel rods are based on PWR fuel structural pattern type, made of uranium oxide (UO2) with 3.4 wt% 235U enrichment in zirconium alloy (Zr-4) cladding. Design, optimization, and verification were performed using MCNP5 nuclear code; the computed effective multiplication factor is 0.95923. The JSA is designed to fulfill the training needs of students and is equipped to perform all of the fundamental experiments required for a typical nuclear engineering university program. This paper presents the design, development, modeling, core analysis, and utilization of Jordan’s first nuclear facility and why this simplified low cost reactor presents an attractive choice to fulfill the preliminary experimental needs of nuclear engineering education in developing countries.