Fluid-structure interaction analysis of large-break loss of coolant accident

T. Brandt (Corresponding Author), V. Lestinen, T. Toppila, J. Kähkönen, Antti Timperi, Timo Pättikangas, Ismo Karppinen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


In this article, we study a Large-Break Loss of Coolant Accident (LBLOCA) where a guillotine break of one of the main coolant pipes occurs near the reactor pressure vessel (RPV). This initiates a rarefaction wave which propagates inside the RPV. The simulation of bidirectional fluid-structure interaction phenomena has been found important for accurate prediction of the resulting deformation and loads. In this article, fully coupled simulation results are validated against the German HDR (Heißdampfreaktor) experiments. The computational fluid dynamic (CFD) software Fluent and Star-CD are applied to modelling of three-dimensional, viscous, turbulent fluid flow. The MpCCI code is used for bidirectional coupling of the CFD simulation to the structural solver Abaqus. Pressure boundary condition at the pipe break is obtained in a two-phase simulation with the system code APROS. Comparisons are made for break mass flow, wall pressure, displacement and strain. The simulation results follow the experimental data fairly well. In addition, the sensitivity of the results to numerical methods, grid resolution and pressure boundary condition are studied following the Best Practice Guidelines.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2365-2374
Number of pages10
JournalNuclear Engineering and Design
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2010
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed
EventXCFD4NRS, 2nd CFD4NRS Workshop: “Experiments and CFD Code Applications to Nuclear Reactor Safety” - Grenoble, France
Duration: 10 Sep 200812 Sep 2008

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