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Canadian participation in OECD/NEA-KAERI ROD bundle benchmark for CFD codes

Abstract of a technical papers presented at:
24th Nuclear Simulation Symposium
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
October 14–16, 2012

Prepared by:

J. Szymanski
Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission
Ottawa Ontario, Canada

D. Chang
University of Ottawa
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

D. Novog
McMaster University
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

K. Podila, J. Bailey, Y. Rao, A. Rashkovan and S. Tavoularis
Atomic Energy of Canada Limited
Chalk River, Ontario, Canada


Three submissions to the latest international benchmark exercise for computational fluid dynamics (CFD) codes used in nuclear safety applications were produced in Canada by three independently working research teams. The teams used different commercial CFD codes or code versions, different meshing tools and techniques, different turbulence modeling options and different computer resources. The paper presents the three solutions submitted to the blind benchmark and summarizes their similarities and differences.

The use of CFD and its best practices in nuclear reactor safety applications is promoted internationally by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) through its Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA). Among its other activities, NEA has been involved in organizing blind benchmark exercises, based on dedicated new experiments performed by recognized research organizations, producing high-quality CFD-grade data. The first such exercise was conducted in 2009&nash;2010 using data from a T-junction experiment performed at the Vattenfall Research and Development laboratory at Älvkarleby, Sweden and was deemed very successful [1]. The second exercise was launched in April 2011 and was based on new, unpublished experimental data from a rod bundle flow test, performed at the Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute (KAERI) laboratory at Daejeon, Korea. For the purpose of participating in the KAERI rod bundle benchmark, the CNSC entered into agreements with three Canadian research organizations that expressed interest in the exercise, namely Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL), McMaster University (Mac) and University of Ottawa (UO). As a result, three different CFD solutions were produced by independently working teams and submitted to the organizers by the blind benchmark deadline of May 28, 2012. This paper presents the solutions as submitted, without any insights from their comparison with the experimental data, which would be disclosed to the participants at an open benchmark meeting at a later date. Following that meeting, the participants would have a chance to work further on their solutions and perhaps improve them, but would not be able to withdraw their original submissions. Those would be processed and ranked as part of the benchmark synthesis work, with the results to be published by OECD/NEA in a report scheduled for 2013.

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