In-vessel Retention

With regards to the safety of the Nuclear Power Plants (NPP) in case of a severe nuclear accident, one of the main challenges associated is the retention of the molten nuclear fuel and reactor internals, called corium, within the Reactor Pressure Vessel (RPV). One of the ways of cooling corium with in the RPV is by cooling the vessel from outside. The in-vessel retention can be achieved by full flooding of reactor cavity to cool the external wall of the lower head thereby avoiding structural failure by creep rupture. This strategy is termed as In-Vessel Retention (IVR). In case of the In-Vessel Retention (IVR) strategy, it is expected that the corium pool will be surrounded by an oxide crust, which will be in contact with molten steel from top of the pool as well as from sides of the vessel. Application of this approach to large power reactors is not trivial because of relatively short time between the detection of core melting and the lower head failure.

References:

Materials Science:

  1. U.S. Department of Energy, Material Science. DOE Fundamentals Handbook, Volume 1 and 2. January 1993.
  2. U.S. Department of Energy, Material Science. DOE Fundamentals Handbook, Volume 2 and 2. January 1993.
  3. William D. Callister, David G. Rethwisch. Materials Science and Engineering: An Introduction 9th Edition, Wiley; 9 edition (December 4, 2013), ISBN-13: 978-1118324578.
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  7. Ashby, Michael; Hugh Shercliff; David Cebon (2007). Materials: engineering, science, processing and design (1st ed.). Butterworth-Heinemann. ISBN 978-0-7506-8391-3.
  8. J. R. Lamarsh, A. J. Baratta, Introduction to Nuclear Engineering, 3d ed., Prentice-Hall, 2001, ISBN: 0-201-82498-1.

See above:
Material Problems