An understanding of gas bubble formation and migration in nuclear fuel and its impacts on fuel and cladding materials requires knowledge of the isotopic composition of the gases and their generation rates. In this paper, we present results of simulations for the production of the dominant noble gases (helium, xenon, krypton) in nuclear fuels for different reactor core configurations and fuel compositions. The calculations were performed using detailed nuclear burn simulations with Monte Carlo nuclear transport, and included ternary fission to ensure an accurate treatment of helium production. For all reactor designs and fuels considered xenon was found to be the most dominant gas produced. Variation in the composition of fission gases is quantified for: (1) the burn time, (2) the composition of the fuel, and (3) the neutron energy spectrum. These three factors determine the relative fraction of each gas and its transmutation into or from stable gas by subsequent neutron capture.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Nuclear and High Energy Physics
- Nuclear Energy and Engineering
- Materials Science(all)
- Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
- Waste Management and Disposal
- Mechanical Engineering