NUCLEAR FUEL FOR NPPs WITH VVER: STATUS AND PERSPECTIVE DESIGN
24th Symposium of AER on VVER Reactor Physics and Reactor Safety (2014, Sochi, Russia)
Fuel management issues
NUCLEAR FUEL FOR NPPs WITH VVER: A STATUS AND PERSPECTIVE DESIGN
Dolgov A.B., Kukushkin Y.A., Ugryumov A.V.
JSC “TVEL”, Kashirskoe shosse 49, 115409 Moscow, Russia Kukushkin@tvel.ru
Carbon-free power engineering with its most developed part, nuclear power, is becoming more and more promising in the world power engineering. One of the most important issues of power engineering remain – improving safety level and stability in NPP operation and its economic efficiency, limited natural uranium resources, accumulation of spent nuclear fuel and its transporting and storage, as well as radwastes disposal problem.
VVER core reliability at normal operation, anticipated operational occurrences and design basic accidents is defined by nuclear fuel and its components characteristics as well as matching of Safety Analysis Report of the reactor unit and NPP as a whole to normative requirements and regulations in force in nuclear power field.
TVEL Fuel Company TVEL of Rosatom provides nuclear fuel to 76 power reactors in 15 countries of the world; namely VVER-440 and VVER-1000.
TVEL Fuel Company of Rosatom consists of the following blocks: – R&D;
- gas centrifuge manufacturing;
- nuclear fuel conversion and enrichment;
- nuclear fuel fabrication.
TVEL’s main goals in nuclear fuel fabrication are:
- meeting Customers’ requirements regarding operational characteristics and improving nuclear fuel technical and economic performance;
- providing necessary safety level during nuclear fuel operation and fabrication;
- improving competitiveness as well as marketing.
The said goals are achieved by solving the following tasks:
1. Development of fuel assemblies’ design which meets the requirements of reliable, safe and economically effective operation.
2. Development of new and improvement of existing fuel assemblies and design materials.
3. Improvement of fuel assemblies’ and core components’ manufacturing technologies.
4. Decreasing conservatism at VVER core substantiation, developing of calculation programs.
Recently as a result of the R & D and technological works performed by the leading plants of Russia’s nuclear power industry new types of nuclear fuel have been developed, introduced and are being operated at VVER NPP for:
- VVER-440 – second generation fuel with increased uranium enrichment per U-235
- VVER-1000 – ТВСА-PLUS and ТВС-2M and their modifications.
Technical and economic characteristics of VVER nuclear fuel correspond to the level of world manufactures of nuclear fuel for PWR reactors.
Further work to develop and improve designs of VVER fuel rods and fuel assemblies, design and fuel materials is being done.