Early Machines, Experiments, and Analysis at Camp NRTS

by Dan Hughes

The URL links below will lead you to Google Scholar search results for the respective phrases / words. Some of the hits have online copies of the complete reports and papers. Sometimes you can get lost in this old literature, in both the content of a given URL and in bouncing around from URL to URL.

SPERT using the Exact Phrase “Special Power Excursion Reactor Test”

EBR using the Exact Phrase “Experimental Breeder Reactor” in the Title

EBR using the Exact Phrase “Experimental Breeder Reactor” 1950 – 1970

BORAX reactors 1950 – 1970

A few of the results of this last search are available at the URL links in the following.

J.A. Thie, Dynamic Behavior of Boiling Reactors, Argonne National Laboratory Report ANL-5849, 1959.

Eight boiling reactors, BORAX I, II, III, IV, EBWR, LITR, VBWR, and SPERT I,have been operated to date, and a considerable amount of information exists in regard to their tendencies toward self-induced power oscillations. Data are presented on the following characteristics of the oscillations: power, pressure, temperature, reactivity amplitudes, and their rate of change: thresholds, and harmonic content. Results from three techniques of measuring the reactor transfer function are presented: the rod oscillation, the reactivity step, and the autocorrelation methods. Quantitative definitions of instability are introduced. Theoretical annlysis of these reactors’ kinetic behavior, based on a simple model where steam void feedbacks dominate, shows an adequate understanding of many of the phenomena, some even quantitntively. It is concluded that it is possible within the framework of existing experimental and theoretical boiling reactor dynamic technology, to design these reactors with reduced instability limitations on the power, and obtain power densities in excess of the current 50 kilowatts/liter of core.

J. R. Dietrich and D. C. Layman, Transient and Steady State Characteristics of a Boiling Reactor. The Borax Experiments, 1953. United States Atomic Energy Commission Report AECD 3840.

J. A. FLECK, JR. The Dynamic Behaviour Of Boiling Water Reactors, Journal of Nuclear Energy, Part A: Reactor Science, Vol. 11, pp. 114-130, 1960.

W. A. Horning and H. C. Corben, Theory of Power Transients in the Spert I Reactor Final Report, United States Atomic Energy Commission Research and Development Report IDO-16446, 1957

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