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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter August 29, 2022

Safety assessment and management of spent nuclear fuel for TRIGA mark II research reactor

Beya Heritier , Rowayda F. Mahmoud , Ahmed El Saghir , Mohamed K. Shaat EMAIL logo and Alya Badawi
From the journal Kerntechnik


Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has a TRIGA mark II research reactor called TRICO II, its design power is 1.00 MW. The reactor was in extended shutdown state since November 2004. The DRC government has decided to resume its operation using the last uploaded core. One of the safety features to be determined before putting the spent fuel into the reactor core is the calculation of its excess reactivity, radionuclide inventories as well as its discharge burn-up. The spent fuel was modeled and simulated by using Monte Carlo software, MCNPX code. The input data and the horizontal and vertical modeling for the fuel pins, control rods and moderator were done. The model results were validated by calculating the effective delayed neutron fraction (β eff) and the worth of the control rods. The results of the criticality and fuel burn-up were compared with the reference design parameters and with the experimental measurements and it were found in good agreement. The calculations showed that the last uploaded core has 47.00 g of 235U which represent only 2% of fissile materials. The depletion analysis results showed that the highest radio-activities come from 151Sm, 137Cs, 90Y, 90Sr and 85Kr.

Corresponding author: Mohamed K. Shaat, Reactors Department, Atomic Reactors Division, Nuclear Research Center, Egyptian Atomic, Energy Authority (EAEA), Cairo, Egypt, E-mail:


The authors would like to thank and acknowledge the IAEA, Nuclear and Radiation Engineering Department, Faculty of Engineering, Alexandria University and Egyptian atomic Energy Authority (EAEA) for the organization and management the AFRA program for master’s degree in Nuclear Science and Technology. Also, the authors would like to express and acknowledge the Kinshasa Nuclear Research Centre (CREN-K) and all the staff of TRICO II research reactor for providing us with all the necessary information related to the TRICO II reactor.

  1. Author contributions: All the authors have accepted responsibility for the entire content of this submitted manuscript and approved submission.

  2. Research funding: None declared.

  3. Conflict of interest statement: The authors declare no conflicts of interest regarding this article.


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Received: 2022-02-10
Published Online: 2022-08-29
Published in Print: 2022-10-26

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