Optimization of the first wall for the DEMO water cooled lithium lead blanket

Pietro Alessandro Di Maio, Rosario Giammusso, Amelia Tincani, Julien Aubert, Alexandre Morin, Christian Bachmann, Antonella Li Puma, Giacomo Aiello

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


The maximum heat load capacity of a DEMO First Wall (FW) of reasonable cost may impact the decision of the implementation of limiters in DEMO. An estimate of the engineering limit of the FW heat load capacity is an essential input for this decision. This paper describes the work performed to optimize the FW of the Water Cooled Lithium-Lead (WCLL) blanket concept for DEMO fusion reactor in order to increase its maximum heat load capacity. The optimization is based on the use of water at typical Pressurised Water Reactors conditions as coolant. The present WCLL FW with a waved plasma-faced surface and with circular channels was studied and the heat load limit has been predicted with FEM analysis equal to 1.0 MW m-2 with respect to the Eurofer temperature limit. An optimization study was then carried out for a flat FW design considering thermal and mechanical constraints assuming inlet and outlet temperatures equal to 285 °C/325 °C respectively and based on geometric design parameters such as channel pitch, diameter of pipes and thicknesses. It became clear through the optimization that the advantages of a waved FW are diminished. Given the manufacturing issues of that concept, the waved FW was therefore not pursued further. Even if the optimization study shows that the maximum heat load could in principle be as high as 2.53 MW m-2, it is reduced to 1.57 MW m-2 when additional constraints are introduced in order not to affect corrosion, manufacturability and Tritium Breeding Ratio in normal condition such as a coolant velocity ≤8 m/s, pipe diameter ≥5 mm and a total FW thickness ≤22 mm. However it is important to note that the FW channels currently fulfill additional functions and are therefore not optimized "at all cost" regarding heat load capacity and the paper points out some recommendations against missing assumptions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1206-1210
Number of pages5
JournalFusion Engineering and Design
Publication statusPublished - 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering
  • General Materials Science
  • Mechanical Engineering


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