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Science and Technology of Nuclear Installations
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 1949673, 11 pages
Research Article

Preliminary CFD Assessment of an Experimental Test Facility Operating with Heavy Liquid Metals

1DIME/TEC, University of Genova, Via all'Opera Pia 15/a, 16145 Genova, Italy
2Ansaldo Nucleare S.p.A., Corso F. M. Perrone 25, 16161 Genova, Italy
3INFN, Via Dodecaneso 33, 16146 Genova, Italy
4ENEA FSN-ING, Brasimone CR, Camugnano, 40032 Bologna, Italy

Correspondence should be addressed to Guglielmo Lomonaco

Received 8 September 2016; Revised 19 January 2017; Accepted 12 February 2017; Published 1 June 2017

Academic Editor: Leon Cizelj

Copyright © 2017 Matteo Lizzoli 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.


The CFD analysis of a Venturi nozzle operating in LBE (key component of the CIRCE facility, owned by ENEA) is presented in this paper. CIRCE is a facility developed to investigate in detail the fluid-dynamic behavior of ADS and/or LFR reactor plants. The initial CFD simulations have been developed hand in hand with the comparison with experimental data: the test results were used to confirm the reliability of the CFD model, which, in turn, was used to improve the interpretation of the experimental data. The Venturi nozzle is modeled with a 3D CFD code (STAR-CCM+). Later on, the CFD model has been used to assess the performance of the component in conditions different from the ones tested in CIRCE: the performance of the Venturi is presented, in terms of pressure drops, for various operating conditions. Finally, the CFD analysis has been focused on the evaluation of the effects of the injection of an inert gas in the flow of the liquid coolant on the performance of the Venturi nozzle.