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A consistent approach for coupling lumped-parameter and phase-field models for in-vessel corium to thermodynamic databases.

Abstract : This Ph.D. thesis is focused on ensuring a thermodynamically consistent representation of in-vessel corium (a high temperature mixture of molten reactor core and structural materials, described as a U-O-Zr-steel system) in the coupled thermohydraulic-thermochemical models that are used for performing Severe Accident (SA) analysis of nuclear Light Water Reactors (LWRs); in particular, the In-Vessel Melt Retention (IVMR) Strategy. In this context, the use of a thermodynamic database obtained by the CALPHAD method seems relevant by providing closures and inputs to the thermohydraulic and thermochemical models respectively. These databases consist of models for Gibbs energy functions of the possible phases for a system that can be used to obtain the equilibrium thermodynamic description for the system as well as material thermodynamic properties for out-of-equilibrium conditions.Through this work, a systematic approach for ensuring extensive utilization of CALPHAD data in the coupled models has been developed, and the associated questions have been answered for ‘mock-up’ macroscopic and mesoscopic models developed for describing some of the phenomena pertaining to in-vessel corium behaviour.As a first step, the feasibility of using CALPHAD based closures (in the form of enthalpy-temperature relations and local equilibrium conditions) has been tested on the macroscopic model developed using the lumped parameter approach. Considering the ternary U-O-Zr system, this model describes the plane front solidification process at the boundary of a molten corium pool. The second part of the work is focused on the development of a general formulation for diffuse interface models under the phase-field approach, which can be used to simulate the kinetics of various thermochemical processes under non-isothermal conditions such as solidification and phase segregation. The questions related to the thermodynamic consistency of the model as well as its parameterization (in particular with respect to the up-scaling of the interface thickness) have been addressed and the numerical results have been discussed for binary U-Zr and U-O systems under isothermal conditions.
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Submitted on : Monday, February 24, 2020 - 2:17:08 PM
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Vaishnvi Tiwari. A consistent approach for coupling lumped-parameter and phase-field models for in-vessel corium to thermodynamic databases.. Materials Science [cond-mat.mtrl-sci]. Université Paris Saclay (COmUE), 2019. English. ⟨NNT : 2019SACLX087⟩. ⟨tel-02489384⟩



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