Mini Subcritical Nuclear Reactor
A mini subcritical nuclear reactor was designed using Monte Carlo methods. The reactor has light water as moderator, natural uranium as fuel, and a 239PuBe neutron source. In the design uranium fuel was modeled in an arrangement of concentric rings: 8.5, 14.5, 20.5 26.5, 32.5 cm-inner radius, 3 cm-thick, and 36 cm-high. Different models were made from a single ring of natural uranium to five rings. For each case, the neutron spectra, the neutron fluence distribution, the effective multiplication factor, the amplification factor, and the reactor power were estimated. The ambient dose equivalent rate outside the mini reactor was also estimated. The maximum value for the keff (0.78) was obtained when five rings of fuel were used; this value is close to 0.86 which belongs to a Nuclear Chicago subcritical reactor which requires almost twice the amount of uranium than the mini subcritical reactor.
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