From cutting-edge pointwise cross-section to groupwise reaction rate: A primer
United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority, Culham Science Centre, Abingdon, Oxfordshire OX14 4BD, UK
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Published online: 13 September 2017
The nuclear research and development community has a history of using both integral and differential experiments to support accurate lattice-reactor, nuclear reactor criticality and shielding simulations, as well as verification and validation efforts of cross sections and emitted particle spectra. An important aspect to this type of analysis is the proper consideration of the contribution of the neutron spectrum in its entirety, with correct propagation of uncertainties and standard deviations derived from Monte Carlo simulations, to the local and total uncertainty in the simulated reactions rates (RRs), which usually only apply to one application at a time. This paper identifies deficiencies in the traditional treatment, and discusses correct handling of the RR uncertainty quantification and propagation, including details of the cross section components in the RR uncertainty estimates, which are verified for relevant applications. The methodology that rigorously captures the spectral shift and cross section contributions to the uncertainty in the RR are discussed with quantified examples that demonstrate the importance of the proper treatment of the spectrum profile and cross section contributions to the uncertainty in the RR and subsequent response functions. The recently developed inventory code FISPACT-II, when connected to the processed nuclear data libraries TENDL-2015, ENDF/B-VII.1, JENDL-4.0u or JEFF-3.2, forms an enhanced multi-physics platform providing a wide variety of advanced simulation methods for modelling activation, transmutation, burnup protocols and simulating radiation damage sources terms. The system has extended cutting-edge nuclear data forms, uncertainty quantification and propagation methods, which have been the subject of recent integral and differential, fission, fusion and accelerators validation efforts. The simulation system is used to accurately and predictively probe, understand and underpin a modern and sustainable understanding of the nuclear physics that is so important for many areas of science and technology; advanced fission and fuel systems, magnetic and inertial confinement fusion, high energy, accelerator physics, medical application, isotope production, earth exploration, astrophysics and homeland security.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2017
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.