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Science and Technology of Nuclear Installations
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 301262, 10 pages
Research Article

A Numerical Analysis Research on Earlier Behavior of Molten Droplet Covered with Vapor Film at the Stage of Triggering and Propagation in Steam Explosion

School of Nuclear Science and Engineering, Shanghai Jiaotong University, No. 800 Dongchuan Road, Shanghai 200240, China

Received 14 July 2014; Revised 7 September 2014; Accepted 9 September 2014; Published 12 October 2014

Academic Editor: Eugenijus Ušpuras

Copyright © 2014 Mingjun Zhong 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.


When the molten fuel with high temperature falls into the cavity water, it will be dispersed into droplets which are covered with vapor films due to the rapid heat transfer with phase transition. This situation cannot be simply described by liquid-liquid or gas-liquid systems. And there are no sufficient experimental studies on the behavior of droplet covered with vapor film because of the rapid reaction and the difficulty in capture of the film configuration. In this paper, a multiphase code with the volume of fluid (VOF) method is used to simulate the earlier behavior of droplet when vapor film exits. The earlier behavior is defined as behavior of the droplet before its disintegration. Thermal effect and pure hydrodynamic effect are, respectively, considered. The simulation results indicate that the film thickness and material density have significant effect on the earlier behavior of droplet. The situation assumed in Ciccarelli and Frost’s model (1994) is observed in current simulation of earlier thermal droplet behavior. The effect of triggering pressure pulse on earlier hydrodynamic behavior is also discussed and it indicates that vapor film has little effect on the hydrodynamic droplet deformation when the intensity of the pressure pulse is very high.