Passive Reactor Cooling System

Primary Inventor: Krishna P. Singh
Contributing Inventor(s): Joseph Rajkumar
Date of Publication: July 13, 2017
Status: Published
Jurisdiction: US
Equipment Type: Fuel Rack
Docket NumberHOL-081
Publication Number: US 2017/0200515 A1
Application Number: 15/419,227
Patent Number(s):

Related U.S. Publication Data:

  • Previously granted as  US 9,589,685 B2, provisional application No. 14/289,525 and published as  US 2014/0321596 A1.
  • Continuation-in-part of application No. PCT/US13/42070, filed on May 21, 2013
  • Provisional application No. 61/827,943, filed on May 28, 2013, provisional application No. 61/649,593, filed on May 21, 2012.

Abstract: A nuclear reactor cooling system with passive cooling capabilities operable during a reactor shutdown event without available electric power. In one embodiment, the system includes a reactor vessel with nuclear fuel core and a steam generator fluidly coupled thereto. Primary coolant circulates in a flow loop between the reactor vessel and steam generator to heat secondary coolant in the steam generator producing steam. The steam flows to a heat exchanger containing an inventory of cooling water in which a submerged tube bundle is immersed. The steam is condensed in the heat exchanger and returned to the steam generator forming a closed flow loop in which the secondary coolant flow is driven by natural gravity via changes in density from the heating and cooling cycles. In other embodiments, the cooling system is configured to extract and cool the primary coolant directly using the submerged tube btmdle heat exchanger.