Two-way Coupling Model Helps to Further Safety Research of Liquid Lead-Lithium Blanket (Physics)

Recently, a research group led by Prof. YU Jie and CHEN Zhibin at the Institute of Nuclear Energy Safety Technology of the Hefei Institute of Physical Science (HFIPS) developed a two-way coupling model for fluid-solid interaction, providing guidance for safety operation and accident mitigation measures of Helium-Cooled Lead Lithium (PbLi) Blanket.

“We investigated pressure wave behavior and its effects through experiment and numerical simulation,” said WANG Zhen, member of the team. “it’s an important progress in the safety research of fusion blankets.”

When coolant channels break in the breeding zone, the high-pressure helium will rapidly inject into the lead lithium flow channel in accident, causing the peak pressure to exceed the design limit and threaten the structure integrity. Therefore, it is of great significance to analyze the condition to avoid the leakage of radioactive materials.

Fig.2. The pressure variation at the four monitoring points (Image by WANG Zhen)

In this research, scientists injected the high-pressure helium gas into liquid lithium lead in order to validate the coupling model. They applied the model to the transient pressure wave propagation analysis and structural stress analysis of the Dual-Functional Lithium Lead (DFLL) blanket.

It’s proved that pressure peaks occurred when oscillations and their values were strongly dependent on the break location. The closer to the inlet/outlet, the higher the peak pressure was.

This work was supported by the National Key R&D Program of China and the National Natural Science Foundation of China.

Featured image: The experimental platform KYLIN-II-S and measuring instruments (Image by WANG Zhen)

Reference: Shichao Zhang, Zhen Wang, Chao Chen, Jiangtao Jia, Zhibin Chen, Pressure wave behavior and its effects on structure under In-box LOCA in a helium-cooled lead lithium blanket of hydrogen fusion reactors, International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, Volume 46, Issue 10, 2021, Pages 7415-7425, ISSN 0360-3199, (

Provided by Chinese Academy of Sciences

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