B. Gera, Pavan K. Sharma, R. K. Singh, K. K. Vaze
April 5, 2013
In water cooled power reactors, significant quantities of hydrogen could be produced following a severe accident (loss-of-coolant-accident along with non availability of Emergency Core Cooling System) from the reaction between steam and zirconium at high fuel clad temperature. In order to prevent the containment and other safety relevant components from incurring serious damage caused by a detonation of the hydrogen/air-mixture generated during a severe accident in water cooled power reactors, passive autocatalytic recombiners (PAR) are used for hydrogen removal in an increasing number of French, German and Russian plants. These devices make use of the fact that hydrogen and oxygen react exothermally on catalytic surfaces generating steam and heat. Numerous tests and simulations have been conducted in the past to investigate passive autocatalytic recombiners behaviour in situations representative of severe accidents. Numerical models were developed from the experimental data for codes like COCOSYS or ASTEC in order to optimise the passive autocatalytic recombiners location and to assess the efficiency of passive autocatalytic recombiners implementation in different scenarios. However, these models are usually simple (black-box type) and based on the manufacturer's correlation to calculate the hydrogen depletion rate. Recently, uses of enhanced CFD models have shown significant improvements towards modeling such phenomenon in complex geometry. The work presents CFD analysis of interaction of a representative nuclear power plant containment atmosphere with passive autocatalytic recombiners simulated using the commercial Computational Fluid Dynamics code for PAR Interaction Studies (PARIS benchmarks) exercise. A two-dimensional geometrical model of the simulation domain was used. The containment was represented by an adiabatic rectangular box with two PAR located at intermediate elevations near opposite walls. The flow in the simulation domain was modelled as single-phase. The results of the simulations are presented and analysed.