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​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​FY 2021 Research and Development Awards

DOE is awarding more than $48.8 million through NEUP to support 69 university-led nuclear energy research and development projects in 27 states. NEUP seeks to maintain U.S. leadership in nuclear research across the country by providing top science and engineering faculty and their students with opportunities to develop innovative technologies and solutions for civil nuclear capabilities. 

A complete list of R&D projects with their associated abstracts is available below.      
 

NEUP 2021 R&D Award Abstracts
 
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
Description
  
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24394_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24394.pdf
21
Carnegie Mellon UniversityResearch and DevelopmentCrosscutting Technologies$497,518
Quantifying and understanding microstructure is a key driver for performance-based materials qualification. In this proposal, well-curated data sets of microstructural images will be gathered and computer vision and machine learning will be applied to build quantitative deep learning frameworks to accelerate and enable qualification of nuclear materials based on microstructural features.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24156_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24156.pdf
21
Kansas State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentCrosscutting Technologies$798,250
The overall goal of this project will be to test the performance of 3D printed Transformational Challenge Reactor core geometry parts using existing Helium flow loops and distributed temperature, and velocity sensing systems. Thermal transport capabilities of scaled 3D printed ceramic core will be evaluated experimentally and measurements will be used to qualify computational models.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24354_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24354.pdf
21
Purdue UniversityResearch and DevelopmentCrosscutting Technologies$800,000
The goal of this project is to demonstrate quantum-based communications for secure remote operations of advanced nuclear systems. To achieve this, the development and demonstration of Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) on Purdue’s all digital University Reactor (PUR-1) is proposed. QKD is a new revolutionary security technology that exploits the laws of quantum mechanics to achieve information-theoretical secure key exchange enabling secure communications.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24636_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24636.pdf
21
Texas A&M UniversityResearch and DevelopmentCrosscutting Technologies$400,000
This proposed project will utilize a risk-informed, consequence-driven analysis to develop an approach for "right-sizing" physical protection systems (PPS) for microreactors. The hypothesis presented for this proposal is that the explicit coupling of consequence modeling to PPS design will provide a similar benefit that can be applied prior to reactor construction.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24131_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24131.pdf
21
The Ohio State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentCrosscutting Technologies$400,000
A total mass determination method for nuclear materials accounting (NMA) in liquid-fueled molten salt reactors will be validated with fuel-bearing salt, mixed with a β+ radioisotope of known activity, that will be irradiated to reproduce the practical NMA scenario in a molten salt loop. Irradiated fuel salt will be sampled and measured for its mass and activity. The mass-to-activity ratio will be used to calculate the unknown salt mass in the original container.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/2021%20CFA%20Technical%20Abstract%2021-24037.pdf
21
University of Tennessee at KnoxvilleResearch and DevelopmentCrosscutting Technologies$800,000
The objective of this project is to explore the application of advanced reactors within Integrated Energy Systems, use extensive existing data from UIUC for model development and validation, and extend the predictions to larger grids and commercial applications.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24522_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract24522.pdf
21
University of Texas at San AntonioResearch and DevelopmentCrosscutting Technologies$800,000
A collaborative program between the University of Texas at San Antonio and Boise State University is proposed to supply materials testing and characterization data sets to be leveraged by the TCR program to inform build/print data analytics. With the data provided by the proposing team, correlations among steam oxidation performance, micromechanical properties, chemical composition, local microstructure, and location specific print/build data will be achieved.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24048_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24048.pdf
21
Utah State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentCrosscutting Technologies$800,000
The overarching goal of the project is to develop high-fidelity dynamic process models for innovative integrated energy system (IES) designs and perform multi-layer optimization and technoeconomic analysis to support advanced reactors. Specifically, “Natrium”will be leveraged, which is being developed by industrial partners (GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy and TerraPower) as the platform to explore various IES design options.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24431_TechnicalAbstract_2021_CFA_Technical_Abstract_21_24431.pdf
21
Utah State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentCrosscutting Technologies$800,000
In this proposed work, we will experimentally characterize the spatial variability of the quasi-static (tensile), creep (strength and impression), and creep-fatigue properties as well as the underlying structures (microstructure and defect structures) for LPBF SS316L and IN718 components to be used as training data to the TCR program data-driven model. The resulting correlation will be used to drive the design process for an application as TCR core structural materials.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-23978_TechnicalAbstract_2022CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-23978.pdf
21
Clemson UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$399,999
High-throughput, non-radioactive, radical assays will be used to determine decomposition of monoamide separations complexants. Radical assay results will be correlated with classic radiolytic damage results to develop predictive models for screening complexant stability. These models will aid in single-stage separations complexant optimization, in the transition from lab- to industrial-scale nuclear waste separations and, ultimately, could yield field tests for radiolytic damage.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/2021%20CFA%20Technical%20Abstract%2021-24350.pdf
21
Clemson UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$600,000
This proposal is intended to develop three waste form options for immobilizing the fluoride- and chloride-salt waste stream in highly durable and easily processable phosphate minerals and glasses, including phosphate apatite ceramic waste forms, phosphate glass waste forms, and phosphate glass-ceramic waste forms with apatite phase. Multiple monolithic waste form samples will be provided to DOE national laboratories for further testing.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24292_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24292.pdf
21
Colorado School of MinesResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
A method for multimodal tomography of dry storage casks will be developed to determine fuel relocation and cladding failures using passive neutrons and gamma emissions in combination with cosmic ray muons. The use of multimodal imaging will allow 3-D reconstructions of the dry storage cask that would be unachievable with any single radiation source.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24374_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFAProjectSummary24374.pdf
21
CUNY, Hunter CollegeResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$399,624
The overarching objective of the proposed work is to assess the impact of radiolysis on pertechnetate speciation during tri-butylphosphate (TBP) solvent extractions from the molecular level to macroscale. The research in this project is designed to understand the interplay of radiolysis, degradation product formation, other important redox active metals, and oxidation states of technetium on its speciation and distribution coefficients in solvent extraction processes.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24183_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24183.pdf
21
Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
Thermal-hydraulics transient heat transfer phenomena of relevance for the safety and the operation of the TREAT and light water reactors will be investigated. The performance of accident tolerant fuel materials during a reactivity initiated accident scenario and post-critical heat flux and reflood scenarios will be elucidated, as well as the development of models and correlations to be integrated into computational tools for the design and safety analysis of nuclear systems.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-23989_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract23989.pdf
21
Mississippi State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
This project will assess contamination risk when waters accidentally breach through EBS and interact with SNF heated by radioactive decay. Experiments on growth of phosphate minerals will be conducted at controlled redox conditions at 25-300°C. Iodide, iodate, U(IV), and U(VI) uptake by phosphates will be quantified. Quantitative understanding of nuclide entrapment mechanisms will permit to optimize the composition of a new backfill mixture of improved efficiency.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/2021%20CFA%20Technical%20Abstract%20CFA-21-24666.pdf
21
Mississippi State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
This project aims to develop and validate wireless, multifunctional, ultrasonic sensor arrays that enable on-demand, quantitative interrogation and real-time monitoring of both the canister leakage indicators (helium, helium/air mixture, internal pressure, and temperature) and corrosion conditions (free and/or vapor water). The developed arrays will be fully functional, wirelessly powered and communicated, and compact.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24307_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechncalAbstractCFA-21-24307.pdf
21
North Carolina State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$400,000
The overarching objective of the proposed research is to investigate a new method for quantifying nuclear materials in molten salts using a technique we call “plasma-bubble spectroscopy”. The proposed technique addresses several critical challenges facing materials accounting in molten salts, which include online monitoring capability, shot-to-shot stability, optical clarity, and the possibility of uranium isotopic quantification.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24188_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24188.pdf
21
Northwestern UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$400,000
An alternative and original method to recover uranium from spent fuel is proposed. This method will utilize a new type of regenerable sorbent materials with high selectivity in capturing uranium from complex mixtures in acidic solutions, such as those found in used nuclear fuel of high-assay low-enriched uranium.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24225_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24225.pdf
21
Oregon State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
This study seeks to objectively determine, through empirical and numerical means, the actual impact of fuel dispersion in-core after fuel failure and whether high burnup dispersed fuel compromises coolable geometry and long-term cooling. The outcome of this study will yield an objective means of assessing two criteria (coolable geometry and long-term cooling) within the existing regulatory process to comprehensively understand whether it is feasible to increase burnup, while satisfying 10 CFR 50.46.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24288_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24288.pdf
21
Oregon State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
The proposed work takes a two-pronged approach. The team will study techniques involving only external sensors and equipment, which could be deployed on existing dry storage canisters. In addition, small sensors located inside the canister that can be externally powered and read through the canister wall will also be investigated.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24439_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24439.pdf
21
Pennsylvania State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
The goal of this project is to develop a novel cementitious buffer material (CBM) for the safe disposal of spent nuclear fuel (SNF). The primary aim is to identify and characterize novel Mg-Al-P CBMs, complete with assessments of their repository stability as well as their transport and immobilization of radionuclides. The secondary aim is to use in-situ UT-EIS monitoring to understand the corrosive failure at the canister-CBM interface and provide long-term performance modeling of SNF packages.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/2021%20CFA%20Technical%20Abstract%20CFA-21-24461.pdf
21
Pennsylvania State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
Researchers aim to create a multiphysics description of cladding response during a RIA, especially at high burnup, coupling reactor physics, thermal hydraulics and mechanics. The creation of a thermomechanical model in Bison will be the result of this project which can be used to evaluate the likelihood of low temperature cladding failures during a postulated RIA on a typical fuel rod (as these can lead to channel blockage), and thus identify the most important conditions to be studied at TREAT.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24364_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstrac21-24364.pdf
21
Texas A&M UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
Fundamental, experimental, and numerical investigations will be conducted during this project to advance the current understating of the behavior of enhanced clay-pelletized mixtures subjected to high temperatures (up to 200°C) and hydration. The project contemplates the experimental thermo-hydro-mechanical (THM) characterization of clay-pellets mixtures, together with the proposal of advanced constitutive models and coupled THM numerical simulators to model their behavior.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24460_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24460.pdf
21
Texas A&M UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
The main objective of this work is to achieve a mechanistic understanding of and to develop a predictive model for the fuel rod behavior at high burn-up under both normal and transient conditions. Therefore, this study will provide the nuclear industry with validated, physics-based criteria to fuel fragmentation thresholds and rod mechanical integrity limits.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/2021%20CFA%20Technical%20Abstract%20CFA-21-24563.pdf
21
University of California, BerkeleyResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$600,000
The solvent structure and speciation of light elements (H, C, metallic Be) in FLiBe will be investigated by application of electroanalytical methods, high temperature liquid NMR, and neutron and x-ray diffraction. The experimental work will be supported by ab-initio molecular dynamics studies, aiding in experimental design and data interpretation.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24388_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24388.pdf
21
University of California, IrvineResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
This project will seek to improve understanding of spent nuclear fuel (SNF) corrosion. Hydrothermal experiments of SNF with cladding and waste canister material will give insights into the redox potential formed due to secondary phase formation as consequence of corrosion in a failed canister. The experimentally derived data about secondary phase formation will be utilized for phase relationship analysis to decipher the redox conditions and thus provide source term for performance assessment models of deep geologic repositories.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24006_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24006.pdf
21
University of FloridaResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
The objective of the proposal is to develop a high-fidelity modeling tool that can capture some of the important phenomena in high burnup UO2 and ATF fuels during transient conditions. The BlueCRAB tool set will be improved and used to analyze TREAT loss of coolant accident experimental results.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/2021%20CFA%20Technical%20Abstract%20CFA-21-24312.pdf
21
University of Massachusetts LowellResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$400,000
Machine learning-based interatomic potentials (MLIPs) used in molecular dynamics (MD) can accurately and efficiently predict molten salt properties. However many machine learning-based methods require large training sets, and can fail unpredictably. This project will overcome these challenges by developing a method for efficiently sampling diverse configurations from MD to train reliable and robust neural network potentials, and develop new models for predicting errors in MLIPs.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/2021%20CFA%20Technical%20Abstract%20CFA-21-24697.pdf
21
University of Nebraska, LincolnResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
Researchers aim to develop two complementary external sensing methods to evaluate the integrity of DSC through internal pressure monitoring and helium leakage detection. The proposed diffuse ultrasonic wave method will be able to measure biaxial strains in the canister wall with high sensitivity and minimum temperature effects. An innovative capacitance MEMS sensor will be developed for helium concentration measurement in air based on the extremely low permittivity of helium.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24633_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24633.pdf
21
University of Nevada, RenoResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$799,992
The proposed research will develop a proof-of-concept sensing platform that may be integrated into a wide variety of dry storage canister (DSC) designs to measure gas composition (oxygen, hydrogen, water vapor, Xe, and Kr) and radiation spectra, in addition to internal pressures and external temperatures. Computational and experimental methods will be used to develop and optimize magnetic-resonance sources that will provide power to the internal platform and transmit data wirelessly through the DSC wall.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/2021%20CFA%20Technical%20Abstract%2021-24449.pdf
21
University of North TexasResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
University of North Texas (UNT) will collaborate with Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) to develop a multi-modal wireless passive SAW (Surface Acoustic Wave) sensor array, which are deployed on the outside surface of the canister, to monitor the strain of the canister and thus determine the inside pressure. In addition, the SAW strain sensor could also measure the surface temperature and potentially monitor helium gas leak.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24265_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24265.pdf
21
University of PittsburghResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$799,999
This project will focus on multiple aspects of experimental testing and engineering-scale modeling in understanding thermal energy transport from high burnup, fractured/fragmented accident tolerant fuels, establishing a strong scientific basis to fill a critical knowledge data gap for modeling and simulation of transient fuel performance and safety, such as loss of coolant accident, for future integral testing and fuel licensing.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24310_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24310.pdf
21
University of PittsburghResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
The proposal will leverage new concepts in the fusion between fiber optic distributed acoustic sensing and advanced acoustic nondestructive evaluation techniques with artificial intelligence enhanced classification frameworks to quantitatively characterize the state of dry cask storage containers for spent fuel monitoring, externally and non-invasively, without introducing additional risks of failure.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24261_TechnicalAbstract_2021_CFA_Technical_Abstract_21-24261.pdf
21
University of South CarolinaResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
The effort will test the reliability of wireless, internal sensors after exposure to drying and storage conditions. These sensors are used to internally monitor temperature, pressure, and dose. Radiation shielding will also be designed to protect sensors during long-term storage. The effort will develop piezoelectric techniques for miniaturization of optical emission spectroscopy for internal monitoring of gas composition during drying and long-term storage.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/2021%20CFA%20Technical%20Abstract%20CFA%2021-24533.pdf
21
University of Southern CaliforniaResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
The objective of this project is to develop a robust non-destructive evaluation (NDE) technique based on acoustic sensing to detect impurity gases in a sealed (welded) dry storage canister (DSC) using only measurements collected on the external surface of the DSC. The method is based on the time-of-flight analysis of acoustic signals propagating through the fill gas of a DSC, which is influenced by the composition, density and temperature of the propagation medium.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-23984_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-23984.pdf
21
University of Tennessee at KnoxvilleResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
The objective of this project is to perform safety analysis of high burnup fuel for a Westinghouse 4-Loop Pressurized Water Reactor. The work aims to identify potential opportunities and gaps for high burnup fuel by utilizing both well-established and modern methodologies to model reactor physics, thermal-hydraulics, and plant system-level response that ultimately provide feedback to fuel performance analysis.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-23985_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-23985.pdf
21
University of Tennessee at KnoxvilleResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
This project will enhance the prediction of thermo-mechanical fuel-to-coolant heat transfer under transient conditions by using a coupled analysis and experiment approach. The effort is relevant to both high-burnup (> 62GWd/t) fuel applications and Accident Tolerant Fuel.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24070_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24070.pdf
21
University of Tennessee at KnoxvilleResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
This project aims to develop a high-burnup light water reactor fuel modeling capability to implement in the BISON code that would enable the accurate fuel rod behavior simulation during normal operation and design basis accidents, as wells as the identification of the rod life-limiting factors. Mechanistic engineering models will be developed for key phenomena, in particular, high burnup structure evolution, fuel fragmentation, and fission gas release. Traditional and accident tolerant fuels will be considered.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-23997_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATecnicalAbstract21-23997.pdf
21
University of Texas at AustinResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
The main objective of this research program is to design, implement, and validate a technology to enable the next generation of “intelligent dry storage canisters”, which involves canisters with integrated sensing and processing capabilities to enable real-time state awareness. Overall, a novel class of low cost sensing systems is proposed, involving helical guided ultrasonic waves and advanced data processing techniques for interrogating the dry storage canister's internal conditions.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24033_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24033.pdf
21
University of WashingtonResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
Deep geologic repositories must safely contain hazardous, high-activity nuclear wastes at geologic time-scales. However, such capability is centrally dependent on the element-specific redox chemistry within and at the interface of storage vessels. A comprehensive study of redox chemistry in cements used in long-term storage is proposed and emphasizes: 1) the actual consequences of accelerated aging modalities and 2) the novel use of newly available capabilities in advanced x-ray spectroscopies.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24063_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24063.pdf
21
University of Wisconsin-MadisonResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
The goals of the proposed research are to conduct coupled experimental and modeling investigations of thermo-mechanical performance of coated accident tolerant zirconium alloy claddings with simulated burnup doped fuels under thermal transients to predict complex thermal and mass transport phenomena of near-term Accident Tolerant Fuel designs in accident conditions. Experiments and modeling for understanding both cladding-coolant and fuel-coolant interactions will be performed.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24582_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract24582.pdf
21
University of Wisconsin-MadisonResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$399,477
New machine learning potential (MLP) approaches and new MLPs to enable rapid prediction of molten salt (FLiBe and Nal-MgCl2 with impurities) properties with near ab initio quantum mechanical accuracy will be developed. Uncertainty quantification with active learning and on-the-fly fitting will greatly accelerate MLP training. This work will support dramatically increased simulation speeds and associated data generation and understanding for molten salts.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24067_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24067.pdf
21
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Research and Development$800,000
The central hypothesis is that mechanical stress in an engineered barrier can lead to pressure solution of solid minerals, leading to significant changes in pore water chemistry, which affects bentonite stability, longevity of the waste pack, and dissolution and migration of nuclides. The overall objective of this project is to develop full understanding of the role of pressure solution on pore water chemistry, the implications to large-scale heterogeneity, and THMC processes.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/2021%20CFA%20Technical%20Abstract%2021-23987.pdf
21
Georgia Institute of TechnologyResearch and DevelopmentNuclear Energy$400,000
The proposed project will develop an International Reactor Physics Experiment Evaluation Project (IRPhEP) mulitphysics microreactor benchmark evaluation based on data from the Systems for Nuclear Auxiliary Power (SNAP) program. This work will include systematic assessments of the experimental data with meticulous compilation and documentation, and validation of specific NEAMS tools to model effects that are unique to microreactors technologies.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24630_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24630.pdf
21
North Carolina State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentNuclear Energy$400,000
This project proposes to develop an integral benchmark evaluation of available experimental data for zero-power tests and multi-cycle depletion for consistent and comprehensive validation of both novel high-fidelity and traditional multi-physics tools. The benchmark evaluation will be based on operational and measured data from the Pressurized Water Reactor Watts Bar Unit 1 released by Tennessee Valley Authority.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24360_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24360.pdf
21
University of New MexicoResearch and DevelopmentNuclear Energy$399,994
The University of New Mexico’s (UNM) Aerojet General Nucleonics Model 201 (AGN-201M) is one of four operating AGN-201M reactors in the world and provides UNM nuclear engineering students with invaluable educational resources. The overarching goal of this work is to enhance the coverage of the ICSBEP/IRPhE benchmark libraries by developing a benchmark evaluation for the UNM AGN-201M reactor.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/2021%20CFA%20Technical%20Abstract%2021-24186.pdf
21
Virginia Commonwealth UniversityResearch and DevelopmentNuclear Energy$400,000
The proposed project will regenerate the undocumented basic data from available experimental data of the MSRE using advanced data-assimilation methods to facilitate the whole-loop modeling of the representative MSRE transients, and perform a thorough MSRE transient benchmark evaluation for the IRPhEP handbook.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24194_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24194.pdf
21
Georgia Institute of TechnologyResearch and DevelopmentNuclear Energy Advanced Modeling and Simulation (NEAMS)$600,000
A practical reference calculation route for time-dependent coupled Monte Carlo calculations, using Shift, will be developed. The proposed framework will be tailored to depletion and slowly varying transients, but with the flexibility to perform thermal-hydraulic time-dependent calculations with minimal computational overheads. This method relies on a hybrid-resolution stochastic approach in conjunction with a substep technique.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24078_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFP-21-24078.pdf
21
Rensselaer Polytechnic InstituteResearch and DevelopmentNuclear Energy Advanced Modeling and Simulation (NEAMS)$400,000
This project proposes to develop and implement models for System Analysis Module, which accurately characterize the sink, source, and interaction terms of key material species that are or may be present in various advanced reactor designs.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24258_TechnicalAbstract_2021-CFA-Technical-Abstract-24258.pdf
21
Texas A&M UniversityResearch and DevelopmentNuclear Energy Advanced Modeling and Simulation (NEAMS)$599,997
A high-fidelity tool for confirmatory analysis will be available to pebble bed reactor (PBR) developers. This reference model will be used to verify closures and simulations of lower fidelity tools. Deliverables include the methodology to generate cross sections for use in GRIFFIN/PPT to perform PBR calculations with depletion, and accounting for pebble stochasticity; and efficient high-fidelity simulations of PBR core physics and depletion without pebble homogenization into spectral zones.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24195_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24195.pdf
21
University of FloridaResearch and DevelopmentNuclear Energy Advanced Modeling and Simulation (NEAMS)$692,088
The objective of this project is to add the capability to model the impact of radiation and stress on corrosion to the Yellowjacket code, as well as to use Yellowjacket to create surrogate models that will be added to engineering-scale codes like Grizzly. We will also collect new experimental data for validation that quantifies the impact of stress and radiation on corrosion of 316 stainless steel in molten fluoride salts.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24405_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24405.pdf
21
University of MichiganResearch and DevelopmentNuclear Energy Advanced Modeling and Simulation (NEAMS)$800,000
The primary objective of this proposed research is to develop a comprehensive, high-resolution, multiphase computational fluid dynamics validation-grade flow boiling data from rod bundle geometry simulating current light water reactor fuel designs by taking advantage of the instrumentation and facility developed by the research team. In addition, the applicability of the data through initial evaluations of selected test cases using Nek-2P boiling closure models will be studied and demonstrated for two-phase flow simulations.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24471_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24471.pdf
21
Auburn UniversityResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$800,000
This project seeks to reveal the fundamental relationship for AM 316H SS working at 500-750 ⁰C between additively-manufactured microstructures and creep/creep-fatigue properties through a multiscale experimental and modeling approach. The project also seeks to establish the technical basis for the microstructure criteria and accelerated testing method to support near-term nuclear qualification.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24152_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24152.pdf
21
Kansas State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$799,202
This proposal presents a novel integration approach to deliver process heat from microreactors by directly heating the catalyst particles from the primary heat transfer fluid in a moving packed bed heat exchanger (MPBHX). In this design, the tube side of the MPBHX can be a heat pipe or primary Helium coolant as in several microreactor designs. The shell side will be moving catalyst particles, which will enter the high temperature chemical reactor upon heating.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24287_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24287.pdf
21
Kansas State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$799,762
Experimental research will be conducted to understand heat transfer inside the graphite matrix of horizontal microscale High Temperature Gas-cooled Reactors. Existing high temperature test facilities will be used to simulate normal operation and Pressurized Conduction Cooldown. The focus of these experiments is to generate benchmark data under forced and natural convection with coupled multi-mode heat transfer in scaled-down prismatic blocks.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24104_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24104.pdf
21
Missouri University of Science and TechnologyResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$800,000
The proposed novel work will make a significant pioneering contribution to advance the knowledge and understanding of horizontal micro-high temperature gas cooled reactors. Quantification of metrics will pertain to convective heat transfer coefficients along the channel and gaps, comparative rates of convective and radiative heat transfer, location of peak temperature and its temporal variation, timescales for onset of natural convection, local gas velocity profiles, gas dispersion, crossflows, and temperature profiles over channel diameter and gap thickness.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24004_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24004.pdf
21
North Carolina State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$800,000
The main objective of the proposed work is to develop, demonstrate, and evaluate a probabilistic risk assessment (PRA) software platform needed to address the major challenges of the current legacy PRA tools. This includes better quantification speed, integration of multi-hazard models into traditional PRAs, and model modification/simplification and documentation automation.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24228_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24228.pdf
21
North Carolina State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$800,000
This project proposes a joint experimental-computational approach to probe and quantify the porosity and microstructure characteristics of irradiated nuclear graphite grades and their influence on dimensional changes and turnaround behavior, as well as mechanical properties. The chief focus will be on quantifying both the static and dynamic porosity and crack characteristics in various graphitic phases through several experimental techniques.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/2021%20CFA%20Technical%20Abstract%2021-24247.pdf
21
Pennsylvania State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$800,000
Irradiation induces microstructural damage in graphite, causing both dimensional and property (stiffness, strength and creep) changes as a function of the displacement damage and temperature. The biggest gap remains is the fundamental deformation mechanisms behind the property changes. Researchers propose to eliminate this gap in knowledge with a comprehensive, multi-scale experimental framework exploiting in-situ transmission electron and X-ray computed tomography.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-23975_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract23975.pdf
21
Rensselaer Polytechnic InstituteResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$800,000
In the U.S. domestic light water reactor fleet, about one-third of operational nuclear power reactors are boiling water reactors (BWRs). Thermal power extraction technologies to be designed for BWRs will be different from those for pressurized water reactors due to differences in steam generation. This study proposes to investigate the thermal and electric power dispatch and required control algorithms for dynamic heat dispatch of up to 50% of the thermal energy from a BWR plant to a hydrogen plant.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24111_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24111.pdf
21
Texas A&M UniversityResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$800,000
Experimental investigations will be performed for fission product (FP) lift-off, washoff, vaporization from plateout surfaces, and transport of FP at prototypical conditions representing depressurization and water-ingress accidents. Measurements will be performed on existing separate-effect facilities using intrusive and non-intrusive techniques to obtain shear stress, deposition velocity, thermal gradient, and gas impurity for advanced correlations. Modeling will be performed using system and computational fluid dynamics codes.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24644_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24644.pdf
21
Texas A&M UniversityResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$800,000
Experiments and simulations will be performed to acquire multi-parameters of pressure drop, heat and mass transfer, and flow-induced vibration (FIV) effect for the design optimization of advanced small modular reactor steam generators (SMR SG). Measurements are performed on existing SMR SG facilities using intrusive/non-intrusive techniques to obtain velocity, temperature, pressure, heat flux, and FIV effects for various geo-dimensions, spacing, pitch angles. Simulations will be performed in StarCCM, Nek5000 and coupling with Diablo
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24332_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24332.pdf
21
The Ohio State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$800,000
Recent studies have shown that the physical security workforce accounts for 20% of the entire workforce and, therefore, is responsible for significant operational and maintence costs. To reduce the security staffing, improve performance and reduce threats, modeling and simulation and models of attacker, defender and operator behavior could be employed. This proposal aims to model human behavior using a combination of known human reliability analyses models and experimental evidence from virtual reality experiments.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24389_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24389.pdf
21
University of CincinnatiResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$800,000
The aim of this project is to produce an electromagnetic acoustic transducer (EMAT) technology to enable ultrasonic structural health monitoring at the METL facility and similar high temperature assets. Ultrasonic nondestructive evaluation methods can be used for monitoring a range of damage mechanisms including thermal fatigue and corrosion. The project will seek to establish core design solutions that can be used as the basis of a range of EMAT designs for different applications.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24380_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24380.pdf
21
University of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$800,000
This project develops a methodology to improve trustworthiness and transparency of automation technologies in nuclear power plants. The proposed methodology will monitor risk emerging from automation processes and rank the criticality of automation factors influencing automation output, plant equipment, and system performance. The feasibility and practicality of the proposed methodology will be demonstrated with two case studies focusing on implementation of nuclear power plant automation technologies.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24162_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-21-24162.pdf
21
University of Notre DameResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$800,000
The goal of this project is to develop self-powered wireless multimodal sensors and instrumentation for health monitoring and diagnosing early-stage materials degradation for high-risk components in liquid-sodium cooled fast reactors. The synergistic and innovative integrations of the multimodal sensor array, wireless communication, and thermoelectric energy harvester have crosscutting benefit for a wide range of advanced reactors.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24102_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFAAbstract21-24102.pdf
21
University of Wisconsin-MadisonResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$800,000
This project will provide relevant key information on the tribology of bearing material and components (such as magnets, couplers, ceramic coated wire, and coatings) in high temperature molten salts that will be required in the design of reactor pumps. Investigation of in-service inspection and monitoring of the pump internals will also be addressed in an effort to reduce down time and operation and maintenance costs.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24226_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract21-24226.pdf
21
University of Wisconsin-MadisonResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$799,713
Heat exchanger technology is a high-cost component of a micro-reactor system that is also critical to the overall reliability and performance. This project will develop the underlying advanced heat exchanger technology necessary to integrate a micro-reactor with any end-user application, as well as providing internal heat exchange. Economic optimization of the heat exchanger and experimental demonstration of the technology will be accomplished.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY21%20Abstracts/CFA-21-24382_TechnicalAbstract_2021CFATechnicalAbstract24382.pdf
21
University of Wisconsin-MadisonResearch and DevelopmentReactor Concepts Research and Development and Demonstration (RCRD&D)$799,717
This project will further develop accurate models of the mechanical property changes under life-extension conditions in reactor pressure vessel (RPV) steels using reduced order Avrami models, cluster dynamics, and atomistic methods combined with massive comprehensive databases on irradiated steels. The work will provide models critical to extending the life of U.S. pressurized water reactors, as well as new fundamental insights into flux and fluence effects and sink and precipitate evolution in reactor pressure vessels and related steels.

*Actual project funding will be established during the award negotiation phase.​