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Investigation of core degradation (COBE)

Abstract : The COBE project started in February 1996 and finished at the end of January 1999. The main objective was to improve understanding of core degradation behaviour during severe accidents through the development of computer codes, the carrying out of experiments and the assessment of the computer codes’ ability to reproduce experimental behaviour. A major effort was devoted to quenching behaviour and a substantial achievement of the project was the design and commissioning of a new facility for the simulation of quenching of intact fuel rods. Two tests, carefully scaled to represent realistic reactor conditions, were carried out in this facility and the hydrogen generated during the quenching process was measured using two independent measuring systems. The codes were able to reproduce the results in the first test, where little hydrogen was generated but not the second test, where the extra steam produced during quenching caused an invigorated Zircaloy oxidation and a substantial hydrogen generation. A number of smaller parametric experiments allowed detailed models to be developed for the absorption of hydrogen and the cracking of cladding during quenching. COBE also investigated other areas concerned with late-phase phenomena.
Keywords : Nuclear Power Plant
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Submitted on : Thursday, March 3, 2016 - 10:51:22 AM
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Iain Shepherd, Tim Haste, Naouma Kourti, Francesco Oriolo, Mario Leonardi, et al.. Investigation of core degradation (COBE). Nuclear Engineering and Design, Elsevier, 2001, 209 (1-3), ⟨10.1016/S0029-5493(01)00393-4⟩. ⟨hal-01282019⟩

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