Thermal optimization of the Helium-Cooled Lithium Lead breeding zone layout design regarding TBR enhancement

Pietro Alessandro Di Maio, Pietro Arena, Jaboulay, Aubert, Alexandre Morin, Boullon, Giacomo Aiello, Rampal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Within the framework of EUROfusion R&D activities, CEA-Saclay has carried out an investigation of the thermal and mechanical performances of alternative designs intended to enhance the Tritium Breeding Ratio (TBR) of the Helium-Cooled Lithium Lead (HCLL) Breeding Blanket (BB) for DEMO. Neutronic calculations performed on the 2014 DEMO HCLL baseline predicted a value of TBR equal to 1.07, lower than the required value of 1.1, necessary to ensure the tritium self-sufficiency of the breeding blanket taking into account uncertainties. In order to reach the TBR target, the strategy of the steel amount reduction inside the HCLL module breeding zone (BZ) has been followed by suppressing some stiffening/cooling plates inside the BZ, leading to this “advanced” concept. Since all the plates inside the BZ are actively cooled by helium, each change in their geometric layout has a strong impact on the thermal response of the module. Moreover, the removal of stiffening plate may impact the resistance of the box in case of in-module loss of coolant accident (LOCA). A thermal and mechanical campaign of analyses has been carried out in order to assess a potentially optimized layout of the module which could comply with the whole set of rules foreseen for the HCLL BB design. To perform this research campaign, a theoretical-numerical approach, based on the Finite Element Method (FEM), has been followed and the qualified Cast3M and NX FEM codes have been adopted. Results obtained are herewith reported and critically discussed, highlighting the open issues and suggesting the pertinent modifications to DEMO HCLL module design
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)827-831
Number of pages5
JournalFusion Engineering and Design
Publication statusPublished - 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

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


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