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An experimental program to characterize confined explosions of hydrogen/oxygen mixtures in the context of radioactive material transport between CEA nuclear facilities

Abstract : CEA, the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission, carries out a variety of nuclear research programs in many research reactors and nuclear facilities, decommissioning and dismantling operations that require multiple transports of different type of radioactive material such as radioactive waste or experimental fuel rods using a wide range of transportation packages. Packages are designed, constructed and operated to meet safety and regulatory requirements and must be approved by the French Safety Authority. Application for package approval (e.g. type B package) requires a complete and thorough safety demonstration in which flammable gas generation like radiolysis has become a major issue in the last few years.To face these challenges, the CEA unit in charge of transport package construction and transport operations (CEA/STMR, Cadarache Center, France), has developed a many-sided approach based on one hand on a better knowledge of both hydrogen gas generation and oxygen consumption in waste materials, and on the other hand, on design of transport packages or waste containers capable of withstanding dynamic pressure loads due to an inner hydrogen/air mixture explosion.This paper describes the experimental program that CEA/STMR has decided to implement in order to better characterize confined space explosions of hydrogen/oxygen mixtures. It presents how pressure profiles were experimentally measured in various pressure and temperature conditions which are representative of normal and accident transport conditions. It describes how different experimental set-ups were designed and improved progressively so as to obtain reliable and reproducible detonation conditions, investigate the influence of water vapor and characterize pressure profiles (peak pressure, residual pressure, peak duration).This experimental data will be used to qualify computational models and tools that are used to calculate the structural response of waste containers or fuel canisters, and finally demonstrate the safety of transport packages following an inner hydrogen explosion.
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https://hal-cea.archives-ouvertes.fr/cea-02509671
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Submitted on : Tuesday, March 17, 2020 - 10:05:08 AM
Last modification on : Tuesday, May 5, 2020 - 1:10:55 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Thursday, June 18, 2020 - 1:18:03 PM

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  • HAL Id : cea-02509671, version 1

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CEA | DEN

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J.-M. Mure, T. Delon, J.-P. Groo. An experimental program to characterize confined explosions of hydrogen/oxygen mixtures in the context of radioactive material transport between CEA nuclear facilities. WM2015 Conference - Waste Management 2015 Conference, Mar 2015, Phoenix, United States. ⟨cea-02509671⟩

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