E.T. Gitau W.S. Charlton, “Use of a Microsphere Fingerprint for Identity Verification of Fuel Pebbles in a Pebble-fueled HTGR”, JNMM, 40, 2 (2012).
The continued development of a commercial-scale pebble-fueled high-temperature gas-cooled reactor (PF-HTGR) in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) will lead to an exportable design within the next fifteen years. The potential export of the design has renewed the need for a safeguards system capable of adequately accounting for the fuel present at a PF-HTGR facility. Previously proposed methods utilized extensive redundant containment and surveillance (C/S) systems or some combination of item- and bulk-type material accountancy that are incapable of restoring continuity of knowledge in the event of a failure of the C/S or accountancy systems. Using a recently proposed verification system based on the use of a microsphere fingerprint in each fuel pebble, the uncertainties in the material unaccounted for (MUF) in potential material accountancy systems were explored for an abrupt and protracted diversion from a hybrid safeguards approach and a new item-type safeguards approach.