First safety test at CABRI experimental reactor

09 May 2018

On 16 April 2018, IRSN and the CEA completed a first test simulating an accident situation in the Cabri reactor at Cadarache as part of an experimental programme. This experiment was conducted on a new pressurised water loop and is the first step in the CIP international research programme to improve reactor safety.

The Cabri International Programme (CIP) seeks to improve knowledge of fuel behaviour in pressurised water reactors (PWR) during an accident involving a sudden increase of power in the reactor. The first test under the programme was conducted on 16 April 2018, on the renovated CABRI reactor, equipped with an experimental pressurised water loop. This loop will be used to analyse fuel behaviour in a thermal-hydraulic configuration. The instrumentation installed by IRSN in the CABRI reactor can take vital measurements for interpreting tests. The Hodoscope is used to take real-time measurements of the power along the rod tested, its elongation and any potential fuel relocation.

The purpose of the first test is to ensure that the new loop works properly, study boiling following heat transfer from the fuel rod to the water, and the behaviour of fuel in the event of sudden and mass heat injection.

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