By: Abrar H. Mohammad and Indresh Rampall

Publisher: ASME Early Career Technical Journal

Year: 2009

Abstract: The Holtec International Storage, Transport, and Repository (HI-STAR 63) package is a type B(U), radioactive package containing commercial Spent Nuclear Fuel (SNF) designed for the transportation of the SNF. The HI-STAR 63 cask is installed with Polyurethane (PU) foam impact limiters primarily because of its capacity for energy absorption under hypothetical drop accidents and thermal insulation under fire accidents. The thermal response of the HI-STAR 63 cask when exposed to a high temperature fire of 1475oF (802oC) for a period of 30 minutes, based on the 10CFR71 Hypothetical Accident Conditions (HAC), has been evaluated. A fire safety test was conducted in a high-temperature furnace at the Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) to ensure the safe transport capability of the HI-STAR 63 package. Numerical simulations of the HI-STAR 63 1/3 scale model subjected to the furnace test fire have been carried out using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) code FLUENT. A three-dimensional CFD model is constructed to model the packaging with the PU foam-filled impact limiters and transient numerical simulations are carried out to predict the temperatures of safety-significant HI-STAR 63 cask components. The CFD results were compared with the fire test results near the seal region of the containment boundary. The CFD results for the scale model bounds the measured test data in respect of temperatures and reliably predicts the time at which the seal temperatures peak. CFD simulations of the 1/3-scale HI-STAR 63 tests therefore provide additional assurance of the capability of the CFD methodology deployed to evaluate the thermal performance of transport packages.

Citation: Mohammad, A. & Rampall, I. “Numerical Simulation of HI-STAR 63 with Polyurethane Foam Impact Limiter During Hypothetical Fire Accident,” ASME Early Career Technical Journal, 2009.