Intermediate Heat Exchanger for Framatome High Temperature Reactor
The Energy Policy Act (EPACT) of 2005 mandated that the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) shall establish a ¿Next Generation Nuclear Plant¿ (NGNP) project. For this project, the DOE elected the Very High Temperature Reactor (VHTR) design as a concept that will demonstrate the production of both electricity and hydrogen production without greenhouse gas emissions. The Framatome reactor design is one candidate concept that meets the criteria of the VHTR. It requires the use of a novel intermediate heat exchanger (IHX) that currently does not exist at the operating conditions specified. In 2007, the DOE supported the development of a high-temperature effective heat exchanger for industrial processes. This heat exchanger not only has the potential to meet the guidelines established for the IHX but also offers the benefit of being constructed from a candidate nuclear material, silicon carbide. This project will evaluate a bench scale version of this heat exchanger at VHTR temperature and pressure conditions, using helium as the primary hot loop. Commercial Applications and other Benefits as described by the awardee: An advanced VHTR design specific to the Framatome concept will be required for efficient electricity and hydrogen production. The IHX is a novel heat exchanger that will contribute to this reactor design. The evaluation of the IHX should expand its usefulness in industrial process heating, fuel cells, and standard power generation technologies.
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