Terrestrial Energy and NRG begin tests on IMSR graphite

US-based Terrestrial Energy has started a graphite irradiation testing programme with the Netherlands’ Nuclear Research and Consultancy Group (NRG) using NRG’s Petten Research Centre’s High Flux Reactor (HFR).

The work is part of broader programme for confirmatory testing of components and systems of Terrestrial’s 400MWt Integral Molten Salt Reactor (IMSR®) power plant. The plant uses Generation IV reactor technology for electric power generation, and heat for industrial heat applications.

The testing programme at NRG is designed to confirm the predicted performance of selected graphite grades throughout the seven-year cycle of the IMSR core-unit. Its scope simulates core conditions, encompassing the full range of IMSR operating temperatures and neutron flux.

NRG reported that the HFR has reached full power indicating the successful start of the test programme, which involved many months of preparation. This included test design, characterisation of the as-manufactured graphites, analysis and development of the loading matrix. This effort utilised the expert services of Frazer-Nash Consultancy, Terrestrial Energy’s engineering consultant.

Source: Nuclear Engineering International November 16, 2020