MYRRHA: A multipurpose nuclear research facility
Belgian Nuclear Research Center (SCK• CEN), Mol, Belgium
Published online: 10 December 2014
MYRRHA (Multi-purpose hYbrid Research Reactor for High-tech Applications) is a multipurpose research facility currently being developed at SCK•CEN. MYRRHA is based on the ADS (Accelerator Driven System) concept where a proton accelerator, a spallation target and a subcritical reactor are coupled. MYRRHA will demonstrate the ADS full concept by coupling these three components at a reasonable power level to allow operation feedback.
As a flexible irradiation facility, the MYRRHA research facility will be able to work in both critical as subcritical modes. In this way, MYRRHA will allow fuel developments for innovative reactor systems, material developments for GEN IV and fusion reactors, and radioisotope production for medical and industrial applications. MYRRHA will be cooled by lead-bismuth eutectic and will play an important role in the development of the Pb-alloys technology needed for the LFR (Lead Fast Reactor) GEN IV concept.
MYRRHA will also contribute to the study of partitioning and transmutation of high-level waste. Transmutation of minor actinides (MA) can be completed in an efficient way in fast neutron spectrum facilities, so both critical reactors and subcritical ADS are potential candidates as dedicated transmutation systems. However critical reactors heavily loaded with fuel containing large amounts of MA pose reactivity control problems, and thus safety problems. A subcritical ADS operates in a flexible and safe manner, even with a core loading containing a high amount of MA leading to a high transmutation rate.
In this paper, the most recent developments in the design of the MYRRHA facility are presented.
© Owned by the authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2014
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