January 13, 2023
Conference Paper

Computational Fluid Dynamic Modeling of Dry Cask Simulator with Crosswind


The purpose of this study is to create a STAR-CCM+ model of a Belowground Vertical Dry Cask Simulator (BVDCS) at Sandia National Laboratories (SNL) and validate the model with SNL’s experimental results. The BVDCS consists of a single boiling water reactor assembly fitted with electric heaters encompassed by a containment vessel and shell to represent a belowground spent nuclear fuel (SNF) dry storage system. Blowers are located near the inlet and outlet of the BVDCS to simulate crosswind conditions. In addition to the experimental results, the STAR-CCM+ model developed for this study is compared with a previous computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model in a different software program, which is used as a software-to-software benchmark. The experimental results provide a dataset to compare the STAR-CCM+ model results for a variety of different conditions. The main objective is to validate and improve STAR-CCM+ CFD models for spent nuclear fuel storage systems with explicitly modeled external environments and “wind driven” crossflows. These CFD models aide in the study of external particle deposition in spent nuclear fuel storage systems, which is important to predicting the significance of chloride induced stress corrosion cracking (CISCC). In addition to experimental comparison, a sensitivity analysis study is performed using the STAR-CCM+ model. The sensitivity analysis provides a quantitative assessment of the sensitivity of various parameters. This helps provide information on various parameters that are of particular importance to constructing a model representative of real life systems. The STAR-CCM+ model compared well to the experimental results showing similar responses to changes in cross wind flow, and a number of parameters are identified for model improvement.

Published: January 13, 2023


Jensen B.J., S.R. Suffield, and M.E. Higley. 2022. Computational Fluid Dynamic Modeling of Dry Cask Simulator with Crosswind. In Proceedings of the ASME 2022 Pressure Vessels & Piping Conference, July 17-22, 2022, Las Vegas, NV, 5, Paper No: PVP2022-84090, V005T07A026. New York, New York:American Society of Mechanical Engineers. PNNL-SA-169740. doi:10.1115/PVP2022-84090

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