"Conceptual Development of Remote Monitoring System for PWR Spent Fuel Dry Cask Storage through Neutron and Gamma Transport Simulations,"
M.S. Thesis, Nuclear Engineering, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX (2013).
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) needs to enhance
its capabilities for safeguarding spent nuclear fuel (SNF) stored
in dry cask storage facilities and for maintaining persistent
continuity of knowledge (CoK) about it. Current safeguards approach
relies heavily upon containment and surveillance measures, where
seals are placed inside and outside the dry cask. The disadvantage
of this approach is that, if a seal is broken, no method exists
currently to verify the dry cask content other than opening it and
checking the internal seal and the SNF from inside. This study
focused on the development of remote monitoring system (RMS) for
dry cask storage which is capable of detecting neutron and gamma
radiation emitted by the SNF and the signal thus generated can then
be continually transmitted to the IAEA to maintain the CoK about
the dry cask contents. The remote option was chosen after reviewing
the current IAEA needs. The IAEA requires new safeguards systems to
be remote, cheap and robust.
Computational approach was used to develop the proposed RMS.
Monte Carlo N Particle transport code (MCNP) was employed to
develop a dry cask model with 32 SNF assemblies inside. ORIGEN-ARP
fuel burn-up and depletion code was used to generate radiation
source-term. A series of MCNP simulations as well as analytical
calculations were performed to investigate the neutron and gamma
flux behavior inside the dry cask. The results of these simulations
and analysis aided the design of the RMS and determination of the
optimal location for its components. The RMS was placed inside the
dry cask on the top of multi-purpose canister (MPC). The final
conceptual design of the RMS included two fission chambers (to
detect neutrons) and one ionization chamber (to detect gamma
radiation) enclosed in a polyethylene box with a thin cadmium plate
separating chambers from the polyethylene bottom layer.
Associated Project(s):Conceptual Development of Remote Monitoring System for PWR Spent Fuel Dry Cask Storage