Utilization of thorium and U-ZrH1.6 fuels in various heterogeneous cores for TRIGA PUSPATI Reactor (RTP)

Abdul Hannan Bin Damahuri, Hassan Mohamed, Abdul Aziz Mohamed, Faridah Idris

Research output: Contribution to journalConference article


The use of thorium as nuclear fuel has been an appealing prospect for many years and will be great significance to nuclear power generation. There is an increasing need for more research on thorium as Malaysian government is currently active in the national Thorium Flagship Project, which was launched in 2014. The thorium project, which is still in phase 1, focuses on the research and development of the thorium extraction from mineral processing ore. Thus, the aim of the study is to investigate other alternative TRIGA PUSPATI Reactor (RTP) core designs that can fully utilize thorium. Currently, the RTP reactor has an average neutron flux of 2.797 x 1012 cm-2/s-1 and an effective multiplication factor, k eff, of 1.001. The RTP core has a circular array core configuration with six circular rings. Each ring consists of 6, 12, 18, 24, 30 or 36 U-ZrH1.6 fuel rods. There are three main type of uranium weight, namely 8.5, 12 and 20 wt.%. For this research, uranium zirconium hydride (U-ZrH1.6) fuel rods in the RTP core were replaced by thorium (ThO2) fuel rods. Seven core configurations with different thorium fuel rods placements were modelled in a 2D structure and simulated using Monte Carlo n-particle (MCNPX) code. Results show that the highest initial criticality obtained is around 1.35101. Additionally there is a significant discrepancy between results from previous study and the work because of the large estimated leakage probability of approximately 21.7% and 2D model simplification.

Original languageEnglish
Article number012034
JournalIOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 12 Feb 2018
EventInternational Nuclear Science, Technology and Engineering Conference 2017, iNuSTEC 2017 - Kajang, Selangor, Malaysia
Duration: 25 Sep 201727 Sep 2017


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Engineering(all)

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