Interpretation of the TRADE In-Pile source multiplication experiments

Luigi Mercatali, Mario Carta, Vincenzo Peluso

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Within the framework of the neutronic characterization of the TRIGA RC-1 reactor in support to the TRADE (TRiga Accelerator Driven Experiment) program, the interpretation of the subcriticality level measurements performed in static regime during the TRADE In-Pile experimental program is presented. Different levels of subcriticality have been measured using the MSA (Modified Source Approximated) method by the insertion of a standard fixed radioactive source into different core positions. Starting from a reference configuration, fuel elements were removed: control rods were moved outward as required for the coupling experiments envisioned with the proton accelerator and fission chambers were inserted in order to measure subcritical count rates. A neutron-physics analysis based on the modified formulation of the source multiplication method (MSM) has been carried out, which requires the systematic solution for each experimental configuration of the homogeneous, both in the forward and adjoint forms, and inhomogeneous Boltzmann equations. By means of such a methodology calculated correction factors to be applied to the MSA measured reactivities were produced in order to take into account spatial and energetic effects creating changes in the detector efficiencies and effective source with respect to the calibration configuration. The methodology presented has been tested against a large number of experimental states. The measurements have underlined the sensitivity of the MSA measured reactivities to core geometry changes and control rod perturbations; the efficiency of MSM factors to dramatically correct for this sensitivity is underlined, making of this technique a relevant methodology in view of the incoming US RACE program to be performed in TRIGA reactors. © 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)875 - 878
Number of pages4
JournalNuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research, Section A: Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jun 2006
Externally publishedYes


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Instrumentation
  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics

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