Experiment QUENCH-20 with BWR geometry simulation bundle was successfully conducted at KIT on 9th October 2019. This test was performed in the framework of international access SAFEST infrastructure with the users from Swedish Radiation Safety Authority (SSM) in cooperation with Westinghouse Sweden, GRS and KTH.
The test objective was the investigation of a BWR fuel assembly degradation including a B4C control blade. The test bundle mock-up represents one quarter of a BWR fuel assembly. The 24 electrically heated fuel rod simulators were filled separately with krypton (overpressure of 4 bar).
According to the pre-test calculations performed with ATHLET-CD, the bundle was heated to a temperature of 1230 K at the cladding of the central rod at the hottest elevation of 950 mm. This pre-oxidation phase in steam lasted 4 hours. Towards the end of this phase, the reference rod was extracted from the test bundle for determination of the oxide thickness axial distribution.
During the transient stage, the bundle was heated to a maximal temperature of 2000 K. The cladding failures were observed at temperature about 1700 K and lasted about 200 s. ... mehrMassive absorber melt relocation was observed 50 s before the end of transition stage.
The test was terminated with the quench water injected with a flow rate of 50 g/s from the bundle bottom. Fast temperature escalation from 2000 to 2300 K during 20 s was observed. The mass spectrometer measured release of COx and few CH4 during the reflood as products of absorber oxidation; corresponding production of B2O3 should be about 97 g. Hydrogen production during the reflood amounted to 32 g (57.4 g during the whole test) including 10 g from B4C oxidation.