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​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​FY 2023 Research and Development Awards

DOE is awarding more than $41.2  million through NEUP to support 43 university-led nuclear energy research and development projects in 22 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 2023 R&D Award Abstracts
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Description
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29058_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-23-29058.pdf
23
University of MichiganResearch and DevelopmentAdvanced Nuclear Materials$1,000,000
This project addresses a critical need for irradiation and creep-fatigue testing by carrying out a systematic, mechanistic-driven benchmarking for irradiation creep, irradiation fatigue and creep-fatigue tests under various environments.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29733_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-29733.pdf
23
University of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignResearch and DevelopmentAdvanced Nuclear Materials$1,000,000
The goal of this research is to fully understand, quantify and model creep-fatigue 'damage' as a function of loading patterns, temperature and microstructural evolution. Using this experimental information over a large range of relevant stress levels and temperatures, a mechanisms-based creep-fatigue analysis approach will be demonstrated which will properly qualify high temperature alloys for extended service in advanced nuclear systems where creep-fatigue is currently a major design limitation.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29311_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-23-29311.pdf
23
University of MichiganResearch and DevelopmentAdvanced Nuclear Materials$1,000,000
The objective of this project is to develop a transformational capability for rapid nondestructive quality assessment of actual nuclear additively manufactured structures and components through advanced ultrasonic imaging with subwavelength resolution. The resolution of conventional ultrasonic systems is limited by diffraction on the order of the wavelength. In this project, the goal is to break the diffraction limits of ultrasonic imaging by implementing a negative-index lens.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29761_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-23-29761.pdf
23
Clemson UniversityResearch and DevelopmentAdvanced Nuclear Materials$1,000,000
The overarching goal of this project is to develop efficient and stable new sorbent materials, for off-gas radioiodine capture and immobilization, that are based on MXenes with two-dimensional transition metal carbides/nitrides. The exploratory research will focus on three main objectives: 1) Design and synthesis of MXenes as radioiodine sorbent and support materials, 2) Quantification of iodine sorption capacity of MXenes in different forms, 3) Synthesis and characterization of consolidated waste forms.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29763_TechnicalAbstract_2023RPATechnicalAbstractRPA-23-29763.pdf
23
University of California, Los AngelesResearch and DevelopmentAdvanced Nuclear Materials$1,000,000
The objective of this project is to understand the details of stress corrosion cracking (SCC) and irradiation assisted stress corrosion cracking (IASCC) by targeted experiments and modeling efforts. A comprehensive model will be produced, which will predict the conditions under which these failure modes occur and when the materials may see onsets of the failure mode. This work will directly impact the nuclear industry by refining predictive models of component lifetime.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29826_Technical%20Abstract%20CFA-23-29826.pdf
23
University of PittsburghResearch and DevelopmentAdvanced Nuclear Materials$999,886
​SiC/SiC ceramic matrix composites (CMCs) are promising candidate materials for the cladding of accident tolerant fuels. Superior material properties of SiC/SiC CMC, however, come at a high manufacturing cost. The objective of the proposed research is to apply aerodynamic fiber deposition (AFD) and metal assisted polymer impregnation and pyrolysis (MAPIP) to develop a new facile manufacturing approach of SiC/SiC CMC.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29217_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-29217.pdf
23
Colorado School of MinesResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Technologies$999,900
Extraction of actinides from used nuclear fuel with high concentrations of monoamide extractants is a promising strategy to intensify separation processes; however key issues remain to be understood and resolved. This project will examine three questions: 1) Can phase modifiers mitigate issues with organic phase viscosity? 2) Can the chemistry of neptunium be controlled to ensure complete separation? 3) Do high concentrations of monoamides affect the oxidation states of important metals and can that be exploited?
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-28941_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-23-28941.pdf
23
University of ConnecticutResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Technologies$1,000,000
Multivalent transition metal ions in a melt can exhibit multiple coordination states that affect molten salt properties. This project will use a new high-energy resolution fluorescence detection (HERFD) spectroscopy to overcome issues associated with measuring coordination numbers of multiple complexes, along with Raman spectroscopy and advanced simulations to accurately predict properties of molten salts with multiple uranium complexes.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29064_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-23-29064.pdf
23
Vanderbilt UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Technologies$950,000
This project will validate long-term performance predictions of rock/cement interfaces based on characterization of natural analogues, ancient cements and interfaces with rock formations, and demonstrate applicability of the established testing and simulation workflow with argillite rock (representative of potential U.S. repository systems). This project addresses the research gap of long-term validation and uncertainty assessment associated with cement barrier performance and multi-physics models.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-28903_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-28903.pdf
23
The Ohio State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Technologies$1,000,000
This project consists of a US-UK collaborative research program focusing on the nucleation and growth of pits and stress corrosion cracking of stainless steel 304 (a canister material used for dry cask storage of spent nuclear fuels) by leveraging multi-scale characterization techniques, 2D/3D computer vision, and machine learning approaches. The study will enable the understanding and prediction of how and when pitting corrosion can nucleate, grow, and transition into stress corrosion cracking.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29149_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-29149.pdf
23
Purdue UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Technologies$1,000,000
The objective of this project is to understand the role of residual stress in chloride-induced stress corrosion cracking (CISCC) of austenitic steel, then tailor CISCC initiation and propagation through engineered multiscale residual stress distributions. Microscopic and macroscopic residual stresses will be systematically varied, then a novel sequence of advanced, site-specific, correlative characterization techniques will be applied to directly link residual stress, pitting, and crack propagation.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29656_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-23-29656.pdf
23
University of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Technologies$1,000,000
Regional constraints on domestic fuel supply and greater variation in demand from advanced reactors has led to a shift in the U.S. fuel cycle, and modeling tools must reflect this. In this work, Cyclus will be updated to better reflect new and emergent regional supply constraints, spatial and temporal fluctuations in material needs, and those impacts on the back-end of the fuel cycle will be quantified. This work will allow for flexible, reproducible analysis to inform stakeholder decision-making.​
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29304_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-23-29304.pdf
23
Arizona State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuel Cycle Technologies$1,000,000

​The goal of this project is to determine the local structures (valence state, coordination configuration and medium-range structure) and thermodynamic stability of uranium species in molten chloride and fluoride salts at high temperatures using a combination of experimental and modeling methods. The obtained results will allow for revelation of the structure-stability relations of the studied systems and development of acid-base scales to determine the solubility of uranium in molten halide salts.​

  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29455_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-29455.pdf
23
University of Wisconsin-MadisonResearch and DevelopmentFuels$1,000,000
This project aims to experimentally investigate the thermal-hydraulics performance of SiC compared to the Cr-coated zircaloys and APMT ATF cladding materials under accident scenarios, including both DNB and dryout conditions. The project is divided into five tasks that will advance the understanding of the operation and optimization of heat pipes for advanced nuclear reactors.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29106_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-29106.pdf
23
University of FloridaResearch and DevelopmentFuels$1,000,000
The objective of this project is to spatially map the material composition, structure, and defect distribution of SiCf-SiCm composite tubes from ultrasonic wavefields measured from the materials and the defects within them. Specifically, this project will delve into the unique ultrasonic fingerprints (i.e., dispersion relations and mode shapes) of the SiCf-SiCm composites using physics-informed machine learning to assess the quality of the manufactured tubes based on their spatial-spectral ultrasonic characteristics.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29490_TechnicalAbstract_4-2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-29490.pdf
23
Brigham Young UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuels$1,000,000
This project will use a parallelized thermal conductivity (k) measurement device coupled with multiscale models to accurately predict the thermal conductivity of TRISO fuel composites. This project overcomes the issue plaguing many “localized” microscale measurements, namely the inability to scale local measurements up to engineering scale properties. This will be done by using Bayesian inference techniques and finite element models to predict effective thermal conductivity.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29552_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-29552.pdf
23
University of FloridaResearch and DevelopmentFuels$999,462
This project will investigate the reason for changed constituent redistribution in annular U-Zr fuel without a sodium bond and how it changes the fission gas behavior and thermal conductivity. This will be achieved using a combination of microstructure characterization and thermal conductivity measurements of irradiated U-Zr annular fuel and multiscale modeling and simulation using the MARMOT and BISON fuel performance codes.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29289_Technical%20Abstract%20CFA-23-29289.pdf
23
Oregon State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentFuels$1,000,000
Synthesis of high quality actinide ceramics (AnCers) remains a costly challenge. A low-temperature, high-yield, short-duration reaction that directly synthesizes UN and UC could reduce the cost of these advanced fuels greatly. This proposal aims to demonstrate a method by which the costs of AnCers can be greatly reduced - metallothermic molten salt synthesis. Optimization and thermodynamics data will be obtained.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29427_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-29427.pdf
23
University of PittsburghResearch and DevelopmentInstrumentation and Controls$1,000,000
This project intends to develop robust and stand-off optical sensors to perform real-time molten salt levels, flow, and impurity measurements of molten salts.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29603_Technical%20Abstract%20CFA-23-29603.pdf
23
University of MichiganResearch and DevelopmentInstrumentation and Controls$1,000,000
This project will investigate whether a unique combination of two versatile optical techniques – laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) and two-photon absorption laser-induced fluorescence (TALIF) – could provide a sensitive, robust, and convenient method for in-situ, real-time detection of trace impurities (
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-28900_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-23-28900.pdf
23
University of Wisconsin-MadisonResearch and DevelopmentInstrumentation and Controls$1,000,000
The goal of this research is to provide technical solutions to unique cybersecurity challenges in future microreactor fleet through cyber-informed design (C-ID), real-time anomaly detection, dynamic monitoring, and cost-effective mitigation strategies. The efforts will significantly improve the economics and effectiveness of cybersecurity risk management in future microreactor fleets.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29442_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-23-29442.pdf
23
Georgia Institute of TechnologyResearch and DevelopmentInstrumentation and Controls$1,000,000

​The research will develop a secure-by-design architecture via integrating plant operation and network digital twins for advanced reactors. Automatic attack path and vulnerability analysis will be developed and used to assess and harden critical digital assets (CDA) against cyber risks prior to and during operation to identify vulnerabilities, attack pathways, and threat vectors. A CDA selection method will also be developed by combining vulnerability scores and assets importance.

  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29323_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-23-29323.pdf
23
University of California, Los AngelesResearch and DevelopmentLicensing and Safety$1,000,000
This project aims at developing a solution to HRA dependency assessment in PRA from methodological and practical/computational perspectives within legacy PRA tools and methods. The solutions will include procedures for quantifying dependency when using PRA legacy tools, a method for modeling and quantifying dependency in HRA comprising a BN-causal model suitable for use with legacy PRA methods and tools, and the computational tools for its integration.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29103_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-29103.pdf
23
North Carolina State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentLicensing and Safety$1,000,000
The overarching theme of the proposed research is to develop and demonstrate a real-time elemental and isotopic detector of molten salts for advanced reactors and fuel fabrication and recycling processes. The detector's longevity, limits, and latency will be tested in static uranium chloride salts, in pyroprocessing chloride salt, and on flowing fluoride salt with evolving actinide composition, respectively.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29263_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-23-29263.pdf
23
Brigham Young UniversityResearch and DevelopmentLicensing and Safety$811,755
A thin-layer electrochemical sensor capable of detecting uranium, plutonium and other species of interest in molten salts, at both high and low concentrations, will be developed for application in molten salt reactors and fuel cycle process units. This will provide a valuable tool for performing material control and accountancy measurements.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29648_Technical%20Abstract%2023-29648.pdf
23
Georgia Institute of TechnologyResearch and DevelopmentLicensing and Safety$1,000,000
T​his project aims to develop an expanded methodology for designing a novel cybersecurity-integrated physical protection system (PPS) framework for advanced reactor concepts that serves to reduce the operational costs for the life of a reactor against that of a traditional light water reactor PPS design, promoting efforts to credit safety features of advanced reactors through proposed amendments to current security regulations, while integrating health and economic consequence analyses.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29351%20Technical%20Abstract.pdf
23
University of Maryland, College ParkResearch and DevelopmentLicensing and Safety$1,000,000
The RAFELHyP project will develop a modular risk analysis framework that enables evaluating the safety, reliability, and economic implications of upcoming deployments of electrolyzers to produce hydrogen at nuclear power plants. The framework will be implemented to conduct an integrated safety, reliability, and economic analysis of multiple plant configurations to provide detailed recommendations for plant protective features and layouts.​
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29577_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-29577.pdf
23
University of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignResearch and DevelopmentModeling and Simulation$1,000,000
Novel multi-scale algorithms for thermal-hydraulics (TH) simulations of advanced reactors will be developed. The methods will leverage recent advances in hardware and reduced order modeling approaches to enable TH simulations of vastly accelerated speed, while maintaining accuracy comparable to high-fidelity methods, such as large-eddy simulation. The methods will allow designers to perform parameter sweeps, develop closures, and enable high fidelity simulation of transients.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29466_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract29466.pdf
23
Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyResearch and DevelopmentModeling and Simulation$1,000,000
Monte Carlo methods have long been considered the standard in terms of accuracy and have seen increased use in design of small nuclear systems; however, the uncertainty quantification (UQ) of the desired output is often relegated to later stages of the design process. This project seeks to embed nuclear data UQ in a single Monte Carlo simulation, such that each desired quantity will not only provide the mean value and statistical uncertainty, but also the related nuclear data uncertainty.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29189_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract29189.pdf
23
North Carolina State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentModeling and Simulation$1,000,000
A novel low-order transport operator capable of approximating Monte Carlo (MC) results within a variance range will be developed. This does not require MC reference solutions to calibrate the low-order model, so repeated solutions of the latter in-transient scenarios does not require repeated MC simulations. Truncation of the low-order operator is done dynamically for evolving configurations to ensure accuracy of the low-order solution. This will involve proof of principle on Cartesian meshes, then implementation in Griffin.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29729_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract29729.pdf
23
Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyResearch and DevelopmentModeling and Simulation$1,000,000
This project seeks to demonstrate a robust high-fidelity CFD-based methodology to predict CHF behavior at varying quality conditions, enabling the development of advanced DNBR correlations with reduced uncertainty, and in support of upgraded plant economics. The availability of a virtual CHF methodology will allow greatly extending the database for DNBR correlations development and further support advancement in the design of high-performing nuclear fuel.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29753_Technical%20Abstract-23-29753.pdf
23
University of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignResearch and DevelopmentModeling and Simulation$1,000,000
​​A major challenge to Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) modeling of complex geometries is the need to generate body-fitted meshes, which can occupy 80% of the CFD practitioner's time. Immersed boundary methods will be added in the NekRS CFD code, dramatically simplifying modeling of complex 3-D structures and facilitating a new paradigm for CFD-informed multiscale analysis. This will be demonstrated by informing SAM transient systems-level models with NekRS heat exchanger correlations for advanced reactors.​
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29598_Technical%20Abstract%20RPA-23-29598.pdf
23
Utah State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentModeling and Simulation$1,000,000
​​This project will quantify the uncertainty in prediction of Neural Network-informed Turbulent Closures when they are operating in a model extrapolation state. Once the method is developed for canonical buoyant jets, the protocols will be applied to plenum mixing in HTGRs.​
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29182_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-29182.pdf
23
University of Wisconsin-MadisonResearch and DevelopmentReactor Development and Plant Optimization$999,983
This project aims to gain a fundamental understanding of the impact of moisture and salt chemistry on corrosion of NiCr alloys in molten chloride salts. A novel approach coupling multiscale simulations and experiments will be designed to determine salt acidity, its dependence on salt composition (i.e., the NaCl to MgCl2 ratio), and its effects on the transport of H2O and Cr ions and the corrosion kinetics of NiCr alloys in chloride salt.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29834_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-29834.pdf
23
State University of New York, Stony BrookResearch and DevelopmentReactor Development and Plant Optimization$1,000,000
Microreactors will potentially require the cost of electricity to be 10 MWD/kg at >3 kW/kg core specific power. These goals are best achieved through a well-thermalized spectrum. Neutron economy as a core material selection criterion to advance entrained hydride composite moderators will be used with the primary goal of significantly reducing fuel costs through novel microreactor designs.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29443_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-29443.pdf
23
University of Wisconsin-MadisonResearch and DevelopmentReactor Development and Plant Optimization$1,000,000
An integrated nuclear system will be developed that would utilize electricity and waste heat to operate a desalination and mining process from adjacent seawater. The desalination approach targets zero-liquid discharge with multiple marketable minerals extracted. The ability of nuclear facilities to load follow is increasingly important, so a cold thermal storage system will be incorporated. The desalination and mineral extraction process will be experimentally validated at lab scale.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-28937_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-28937.pdf
23
Utah State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentReactor Development and Plant Optimization$1,000,000
The overarching goal of this project is to develop two reference designs for green ammonia plants. One design uses freshwater as the source for hydrogen, while the other design uses seawater (or brackish water) as the source. In both designs, a small modular reactor (SMR) is used as the primary energy source providing both electricity and steam for the plants.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29622_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-23-29622.pdf
23
Pennsylvania State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentReactor Development and Plant Optimization$1,000,000
The objective of this project is to provide the technical basis to support the application of a right-sized Emergency Planning Zone (EPZ) size to support the deployment of a microreactor at the Penn State University Park campus. This research study will serve as a template to provide flexible siting in support of future microreactor deployments that may be placed closer to demand centers, thereby making them more economically competitive.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29815_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract29815.pdf
23
Arizona State UniversityResearch and DevelopmentReactor Development and Plant Optimization$1,000,000
The objective of this project is to develop analytical tools based on Gaussian process modeling and Bayesian Optimization that facilitate reactor design optimization by modeling the responses from the physics simulator. Existing capabilities will be applied in an AI field and they will be adapted to address the key characteristics of nuclear reactor design problem. This project will automate the simulation-based design procedure, reduce the number of iterations, and minimize the design cycle time.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29356_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-23-29356.pdf
23
Texas A&M UniversityResearch and DevelopmentReactor Development and Plant Optimization$1,000,000
A comprehensive characterization of the performance of the Lightbridge Helical Cruciform advanced fuel design will be performed, which will generate unique sets of experimental data of friction factor, flow and heat transfer behavior under NuScale’s LW-SMR simulated normal and off-normal conditions. The project will accelerate the deployment of advanced fuels for LW-SMR applications by leveraging the use of existing testing infrastructures.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29700_Technical%20Abstract%20CFA-23-29700.pdf
23
University of MichiganResearch and DevelopmentReactor Development and Plant Optimization$1,000,000
This project will engage diverse New Mexican communities to develop an equitable approach for advanced reactor siting. The findings of this project will shed light on how technology developers and the DOE can explore and potentially site advanced reactors with the informed consent and engagement of host communities, regions, and states. The findings of this study will also more generally apply to the potential for equitably exploring both brownfield and greenfield sites for nuclear facilities.​
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29784%20Technical%20Abstract%2023-29784.pdf
23
University of New MexicoResearch and DevelopmentReactor Development and Plant Optimization$998,000
​This project addresses a critical gap in accelerated testing of YH evolution coupling multi-length scale mechanical testing with ion irradiation and advanced characterization to establish a baseline understanding of YH evolution under ion irradiation. Our approach will couple ion irradiation and gamma irradiation with small scale mechanical testing to decipher multi-scale impacts on phase stability to advance understanding of YH in a microreactor moderator application.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29324_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract29324.pdf
23
University of Texas at San AntonioResearch and DevelopmentReactor Development and Plant Optimization$997,247

​This collaborative project creates novel AI/ML models and algorithms integrated with physical knowledge and expertise to explore more efficient ways to calculate irradiation temperatures and fuel specimen burnups for new fuel sample configurations of MiniFuel experiments proposed for irradiation in the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL).​

  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29547_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract29547.pdf
23
Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyResearch and DevelopmentStrategic Needs Blue Sky$500,000
Experiments will be conducted to quantify the effect of mixing vane spacers on cladding-to-coolant heat transfer phenomena, namely single-phase forced convection, nucleate boiling, and CHF. The results of the experimental research will allow elucidating the physical phenomena triggered by the presence of mixing vane spacers. They will also allow assessing the performance of M-CFD tools developed within CASL and in use by the nuclear community.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29416_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstractCFA-23-29416.pdf
23
University of MichiganResearch and DevelopmentStrategic Needs Blue Sky$500,000
This project will develop algorithms for solving the k-eigenvalue form of the neutron transport equation in a nuclear reactor physics context on a quantum computer. The asymptotic scaling of the algorithms will be analyzed. Investigation into implementation will be made by making resource estimates by synthesizing explicit circuits for the algorithms and be studied by emulation on a classical computer.
  
https://neup.inl.gov/FY23%20Abstracts/CFA-23-29708_TechnicalAbstract_2023CFATechnicalAbstract23-29708.pdf
23
Colorado School of MinesResearch and DevelopmentStrategic Needs Blue Sky$500,000
Machine Learning methods will be developed that will dramatically reduce both the computational run-time and manual effort needed to find multigroup energy structures that accurately capture the underlying physics of neutron reactions, while allowing multigroup simulations to run quickly without overwhelming available memory.


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